Hearing Services of Nashville

Woman who is having trouble sleeping because she has tinnitus.

Are you being kept awake by ringing in your ears? You don’t have to just live with it. If you would like to sleep better, consider these tricks to tone down this annoying unrelenting noise.

Moderate to severe tinnitus can really cause a problem with your sleeping habits. In the middle of the day, you’re preoccupied with noise and activity so your tinnitus might seem less noticeable. But tinnitus can seem louder and more stressful at night when it’s not as loud.

Fortunately, there are several strategies you can use to get to sleep more easily.

Below are 5 tips to falling asleep in spite of your tinnitus.

1. Stop Resisting The Noise

Although this may sound difficult, if you pay attention to it, it becomes worse. If you start to get frustrated, your blood pressure increases and this causes tinnitus symptoms to get worse. So the more aggravated you get dwelling on it, the worse you are probably going to feel. You can make the sound fade away a little by thinking about something else and utilizing the following techniques.

2. Establish a Nighttime Schedule

Condition your body to feel sleepy at the right time by developing good sleep habits such as dimming the lights, winding down at least a half an hour before you go to bed, and going to bed at the same time every night. This will make it easier to fall asleep when you’re ready.

Stress has also been linked to tinnitus. Establishing habits to lower your stress level before bed can also be helpful, like:

  • Sitting in a quiet room and reading a book
  • Doing deep breathing or a quick meditation
  • Making your bedroom slightly cooler
  • Focusing on thoughts that make you happy and calm
  • Going into a bath
  • Avoiding drinking alcohol
  • At least an hour before going to bed, dim the lights
  • Listening to soft music or gentle sounds
  • At least a few hours before you go to bed, steer clear of eating
  • Stretching or doing yoga

Getting into a predictable routine before going to bed helps you shift away from the stresses of the day into night and teaches your body to transition into sleep.

3. Watch What You Eat

There are known triggers to tinnitus like alcohol and artificial sweeteners. Steer clear of certain foods if you find, after monitoring your diet and symptoms, that they trigger or worsen your tinnitus. Caffeine is also a trigger so at least avoid drinking it in the afternoon and evening.

4. The Common Causes of Tinnitus Should be Avoided

Ringing or other noises in your ears can be caused by many things. Dealing with the cause of tinnitus can help it improve or even stop it altogether. You can do several things to help:

  • Use ear protection
  • Assess your lifestyle to determine whether you’re subjected to loud noises (and how to limit exposure)
  • Go over your medications with your doctor to see if one may be causing tinnitus symptoms
  • Get treatment for anxiety or depression
  • Get help for underlying conditions such as high blood pressure
  • Go for your annual examination
  • Don’t use earbuds…use headphones instead and keep the sound level low

If you can identify what’s causing the ringing in your ears, you might be able to manage it better.

5. Make an Appointment to See a Hearing Specialist

A professional hearing test can help you discover what’s causing your tinnitus and suggest possible solutions. There are many ways hearing professionals can help you control your tinnitus including:

  • Help you train your brain to not hear tinnitus by signing you up for therapy
  • Help you handle thought patterns shown to make tinnitus worse by recommending cognitive behavior therapy
  • Fitting you for hearing aids created to cancel out the noise

Expert help can hasten healing and help you sleep better at night. Schedule an appointment with your hearing care professional to find out if you can get some help with your tinnitus.

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