With chronic tinnitus, it isn’t the ringing in your ears that’s the real problem. The real issue is that the ringing doesn’t stop.
At first, this might be a mild noise that’s not much more than a bit irritating. 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 crucial that if you are coping with tinnitus you follow some tips to make life easier. When you’re lying in bed, having difficulty falling asleep because you keep hearing ringing from your right ear, having a plan is going to do you a world of good.
Your Tinnitus Can be Exacerbated
Chronic tinnitus, after all, is frequently not a static problem. Symptoms manifest themselves in spikes and valleys. Sometimes, your tinnitus may be an afterthought, lost in the background of daily life. 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 concerned about your tinnitus flaring up while you’re in a meeting. And the very panic attack caused by this worry can itself cause the tinnitus.
Tips For Coping With Tinnitus
You will be in a better position to plan for and manage tinnitus the more you understand about it. And management is crucial since tinnitus has no known cure. There’s no reason that your quality of life has to suffer if you put in place the proper treatment.
Tinnitus Retraining Therapy is One Option
Many treatments for tinnitus include some kind of tinnitus retraining therapy (or TRT). The analogy that gets floated around most often is the sound of rain on your roof: very obvious at the start of a storm, but you stop focusing on it after a while and that rain-on-rooftops sound goes 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 disregard.
Mastering this method can take some practice.
Distract Your Brain
One reason tinnitus can be so frustrating is because your brain is continuously looking for the source of that noise, attempting to signal you to its presence. So giving your brain a variety of different sounds to focus on can be very helpful. You could:
- Enjoy a book while soaking in a bubble bath.
- Do some drawing or painting while listening to music.
- Bring a book to the park and listen to the birds while reading.
You get the point: engaging your brain can help you control your tinnitus.
Meditation, as an alternate path, helps you focus your attention on a mantra, or your breathing which helps take your attention away from your tinnitus. Another advantage of meditation, at least for some people, is that it can lower blood pressure which is a known cause of tinnitus symptoms.
Manage Tinnitus With a Hearing Aid
Many hearing aid companies have manufactured hearing aids that help decrease the ringing in your ear. Hearing aids are an ideal 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. You can relax and let a discreet hearing aid deal with the ringing for you.
Have a Plan (And Follow-Through)
The impact of some tinnitus episodes can be decreased, and your stress reaction can be managed if you have a practical plan for any surges in your symptoms. Consider having a “go bag” containing stuff you may need. Anything that can help you be ready for a tinnitus spike, even generating a list of helpful exercises will be good because it will keep you from having a panic attack!
The Key is Management
There’s no cure for tinnitus which is usually chronic. But control and treatment of tinnitus is a very real possibility. Make certain you are managing your tinnitus not suffering from it by utilizing these tips and any others that you find helpful.