Latest posts by Dr. Maria Wynens, Au.D. (see all)
- Staying Independent As You Age Involves Treating Your Hearing Loss - December 2, 2019
- Acknowledging the Realities of Hearing Loss - November 20, 2019
- A Healthy Diet May Support Better Hearing - November 20, 2019
Do you struggle to get a good night’s sleep? Does tinnitus keep you up at night? We know the struggle of trying to sleep through tinnitus, so here are our best tips to help you fall asleep as soon as your head hits the pillow.
What is Tinnitus?
Tinnitus, that annoying ringing or buzzing sound you hear in your ears, is a lot more common than you might think. Tinnitus has been described as a whistling, roaring, clicking, or buzzing sound that can only be heard in the absence of all other sound. Some people experience temporary tinnitus, after a particularly loud concert or sports event, and for others tinnitus can be a permanent problem. Nearly 30 million Americans report struggling with tinnitus. Some people experience tinnitus throughout the day, and others only notice it at night, when everything around them is especially quiet. If tinnitus is keeping you awake during the night, it could be driving you crazy.
What Causes Tinnitus
No one knows exactly what causes tinnitus, but we know that several things increase your chances of developing this buzzing in your ears. Risk factors for tinnitus include exposure to loud noises, a head injury, an ear or sinus infection, TMJ disorders, a buildup of earwax, cardiovascular disease, thyroid disorders, and finally hearing loss. If you have experienced any of these things, your chances of developing tinnitus are higher, and you might find yourself struggling to get to sleep at night.
Tips for Sleeping with Tinnitus
Tinnitus can keep you awake at night, lead to poor quality sleep, and leave you feeling exhausted in the morning. The worse you sleep the worse your tinnitus will become, so it’s important to break this cycle, and start sleeping better. Follow these tips to finally get the good night’s sleep that you deserve.
- Avoid the Quiet: You know that tinnitus gets worse when everything around you is very quiet, so avoid sleeping in a room that’s extremely quiet. You can turn on your fan or use a white noise machine to help you sleep at night.
- Meditation: Try some mindfulness or meditation before bed. This has been shown to have an amazing affect when it comes to reducing stress, and minimizing your experience of tinnitus. You’ll be able to focus on your breathing, and drift off to sleep without thinking about the ringing in your ears.
- Relax: Just like meditation, anything you can do to help you relax will reduce your experience of tinnitus. The buzzing in your ears grows louder and more prominent the more you focus on it, so practice relaxation techniques and let the tinnitus fade into the back of your mind. Relaxation techniques can include deep breathing exercises, guided imagery, aromatherapy, and even cognitive behavioral therapy.
Other tips to minimize your experience of tinnitus is to limit the amount of time you use earplugs. They will protect your hearing, but as they reduce the sounds around you, making your tinnitus seem worse. Consider investing in digital hearing protection that will only block harmful sounds, but allow you to hear soft sounds normally.
If you experience any ear pain or discomfort, don’t ignore it. The presence of pain could indicate another source of your tinnitus, such as illness or injury, and needs to be looked at right away.
Atlanta Hearing Doctor
If you have tinnitus, Atlanta Hearing Doctor has a solution. First, visit us for a comprehensive hearing test. Hearing loss and tinnitus often go hand in hand, so it’s important to determine your unique hearing profile. Then, we’ll walk you through your tinnitus treatment options.
Many of our advanced hearing aids have built-in tinnitus therapy programs that use sound therapy to mask tinnitus. Sound therapy programs allow you to decide what you’d like to listen to, and you can choose between preprogramed sounds such as water sounds or nature sounds, white noise, pink noise, or even your own music. The program will be calibrated to match your exact tinnitus, and the sounds will fade your tinnitus into the background. Rather than lying awake trying to forget about that buzzing or ringing in your ears, Atlanta Hearing Doctor will allow you to get on with your day and your night peacefully. Visit us today to explore your options!