The real issue with chronic tinnitus is not only that you have a ringing in your ears. It’s the continual non-stop ringing, that’s the real issue.
At first, this might be a mild noise that’s not much more than a little irritating. But the ringing can become frustrating and even incapacitating if it continues for days or months or more.
That’s why it’s critical that if you are living 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 help you a lot.
How You Can Exacerbate Your Tinnitus
It’s important to keep in mind that tinnitus is often not static. Symptoms manifest themselves in spikes and valleys. There are times when your tinnitus is minimal and virtually lost in the background. At other times the noises will be screeching in your ears so loudly it’s impossible to dismiss.
That can leave you in a very scary place of uncertainty. Perhaps you even experience panic attacks while driving to work because you’re worried about your tinnitus flaring up during a meeting. And the very panic attack caused by this worry can itself cause the tinnitus.
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 doesn’t have a known cure. With the correct treatment, there’s no reason that chronic tinnitus needs to negatively affect your quality of life.
Tinnitus Retraining Therapy is One Option
Several treatment options for tinnitus include some form of tinnitus retraining therapy (or TRT). The sound of rain on a roof is a common analogy: it’s very loud and noticeable when it first starts but by the end of the storm you stop focusing on it and recedes into the background. TRT uses the same principle to train your brain to move the tinnitus symptoms into the background of your thoughts so you will have an easier time tuning it out.
Perfecting this technique can take a bit of practice.
Distract Your Brain
Your brain is constantly looking for the source of the sound and that’s one of the reasons why tinnitus can be so aggravating. So giving your brain more (and varied) stimuli to focus on can be helpful. You could:
- Play music while painting a picture.
- Enjoy a book while taking a bubble bath.
- Enjoy some time outside listening to the sounds of nature.
You get the idea: engaging your brain can help you control your tinnitus.
Meditation, as an alternate approach, helps you concentrate 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 decrease blood pressure which is a known cause of tinnitus symptoms.
Manage Tinnitus With a Hearing Aid
Hearing aids that help reduce tinnitus symptoms are already being developed by a number of hearing aid companies. This option is really convenient because they are small and out of your way compared to other approaches. You can relax and let a discreet hearing aid take care of the ringing for you.
Have a Plan (And Stick to it)
Making a plan for unexpected surges can help you handle your stress-out reaction, and that can help you reduce certain tinnitus episodes (or at least keep from worsening them). Pack a bag of practical items to take with you. Anything that can help you be ready for a tinnitus surge, even making a list of useful exercises will be beneficial because it will keep you from panicking!
Management is Key
There’s no cure for tinnitus which is often chronic. But that doesn’t mean that individuals can’t regulate and treat their tinnitus. Make certain you are dealing with your tinnitus not suffering from it by utilizing these tips and any others that you find helpful.