Are you being kept awake by ringing in your ears? You don’t need to just live with it. Here are some guidelines for quieting that annoying, persistent noise so you can get some sleep.
Your sleep habits can be drastically impacted by moderate to severe tinnitus. In the middle of the day, you’re distracted by noise and activity so your tinnitus might seem less noticeable. But during the night, when it’s quiet, tinnitus can get louder and more stressful.
The good news is, if you would like to fall asleep easier, there are some techniques you can use.
Below are 5 techniques to falling asleep in spite of your tinnitus.
1. Don’t Resist The Noise
Though this might sound difficult, if you pay attention to it, it gets worse. This is partly because for most people higher blood pressure can make tinnitus symptoms worse. You will feel worse the more you think about it and your aggravation will get worse. Paying attention to something else and utilizing the strategies below can help make the noise seem quieter.
2. Establish a Nighttime Schedule
Establishing good sleep habits like winding down at least 30 minutes before bed, dimming the lights and going to bed at the same time every night helps condition your body to be sleepy at the right time. When you’re ready to fall asleep it will be less difficult.
Stress has also been connected to tinnitus. It’s also helpful to build habits to de-stress before bed.
- Concentrating on thoughts that make you happy and relaxed
- Turn down the heat in your bedroom
- Avoiding alcohol
- Doing a quick meditation or a deep breathing exercise
- Sitting in a quiet room and reading a book
- At least a few hours before you go to bed, steer clear of eating
- Stretching or doing yoga
- At least an hour before going to bed, dim the lights
- Listening to gentle sounds or relaxing music
Training your body to transition into sleep by getting into a predictable regimen before bed helps you shift away from the stresses of the day.
3. Watch What You Eat
There are known triggers to tinnitus like alcohol and artificial sweeteners. If you discover, after tracking your diet and symptoms, that specific foods trigger or worsen your tinnitus, make it a practice to steer clear of them. You might feel that you still have to have your morning coffee, but avoid caffeine in the afternoon or at nights.
4. Avoid Common Causes of Tinnitus
Ringing or other noises in your ears can be caused by many things. Addressing the cause can help prevent tinnitus or make it better. You can do a few things to help:
- Evaluate your lifestyle to determine whether you’re exposed to loud noises (and how to limit exposure)
- Don’t use earbuds…use headphones instead and keep the sound level low
- Review your medications with your doctor to see if one may be causing tinnitus symptoms
- Get treatment for depression or anxiety
- Get help for underlying conditions like high blood pressure
- Schedule an appointment for your annual exam
- Safeguard your ears
You may be able to better deal with it if you can determine what’s causing the ringing.
5. Make an Appointment to See a Hearing Specialist
A professional hearing exam can help you determine what’s causing your tinnitus and suggest possible solutions. Professionals can help you take care of your tinnitus in many ways such as:
- Suggesting cognitive behavioral treatment to deal with thought patterns shown to make tinnitus worse
- Fitting you for hearing aids designed to cancel out the noise
- Help you train your brain not to hear tinnitus by enrolling you in therapy
Expert help can speed up healing and help you sleep better at night. To find out if you can get some help with your tinnitus, schedule your appointment with a hearing care expert.