The actual issue with chronic tinnitus isn’t simply that you have a ringing in your ears. The real issue is that the ringing won’t stop.
The continuous noise, possibly somewhat moderate in volume, may begin as little more than an annoyance. But after a day or a week or a month, that ringing or buzzing can become aggravating, frustrating, even debilitating.
That’s why it’s essential that if you are living with tinnitus you adhere to some tips to make life easier. It can make a big difference if you have a plan when you’re lying in bed unable to fall asleep because of the buzzing or ringing in your ear.
How you can worsen your tinnitus
It’s important to remember that tinnitus is commonly not static. There are increases and decreases in the manifestation of symptoms. There are times when your tinnitus is minimal and practically lost in the background. At other times the noises will be screeching in your ears so loudly it’s impossible to disregard.
This can be a very uncertain and scary situation. Maybe you even get panic attacks while driving to work because you’re worried about your tinnitus flaring up while you’re in a meeting. That panic attack, in and of itself, can cause the very situation you’re worried about.
Tips for coping with tinnitus
The more you understand about tinnitus, the better you can prepare for and manage the effects. And management is the key since tinnitus has no known cure. With the proper treatment, there’s no reason that chronic tinnitus has to negatively impact your quality of life.
Tinnitus retraining therapy is one approach
Many treatment options for tinnitus include some form of tinnitus retraining therapy (or TRT). The analogy that gets used most often is the sound of rain on your rooftops: it’s very loud and noticeable when it first starts but by the time the storm is ending you stop focusing on it and recedes into the background. It’s the same basic strategy with TRT, teaching your brain to move that ringing into the background of your attention where it’s easier to dismiss.
Perfecting this method can take a bit of practice.
Distract your brain
One of the reasons that tinnitus can be so infuriating is because your brain is constantly looking for the source of that noise, attempting to signal you to its presence. So giving your brain more (and varied) stimulation to focus on can be helpful. Try these:
- Bring a book to the park and listen to the birds while reading.
- Enjoy a book while soaking in a bubble bath.
- Do some drawing or painting while playing music.
You get the idea: engaging your brain can help you manage your tinnitus.
Alternately, many people have found that meditation helps because it focuses your attention on something else, your breath, a mantra, and so on. Another advantage of meditation, at least for some people, is that it can decrease blood pressure which is a known cause of tinnitus symptoms.
Manage tinnitus with a hearing aid
Numerous hearing aid companies have manufactured hearing aids that help minimize the ringing in your ear. Hearing aids are a great option because you put them in and can forget about it the entire day, you won’t need to carry around a white noise generator or constantly use an app. The ringing will be managed by the hearing aid and you can relax and enjoy your life.
Make a plan (And stick to it)
The impact of some tinnitus episodes can be lessened, and your stress response can be controlled if you have a good plan for any surges in your symptoms. Pack a bag of useful items to take with you. Anything that can help you be prepared for a tinnitus spike, even creating a list of helpful exercises will be good because it will keep you from panicking!
Management is key
There’s no cure for tinnitus which is usually chronic. But that doesn’t mean that individuals cannot regulate and treat their tinnitus. These daily tips (and more like them) can help make certain you are living with tinnitus, and not suffering from tinnitus.