The real problem with chronic tinnitus is not just that you have a ringing in your ears. It’s the continual non-stop ringing, that’s the real problem.
The continuous noise, possibly somewhat modest in volume, might start as little more than an annoyance. But after a day or a week or a month, that buzzing or ringing can become aggravating, frustrating, even incapacitating.
That’s why it’s essential to have some tips to fall back on, tips that make living with tinnitus less difficult. It can make a big difference if you have a plan when you’re lying in bed struggling to fall asleep because of the ringing or buzzing in your ear.
How You Can Exacerbate Your Tinnitus
Chronic tinnitus, in fact, is commonly not a static problem. 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 sounds will be screeching in your ears so loudly it’s impossible to disregard.
This can be a very uncertain and frightening situation. Maybe you even experience 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 trigger the tinnitus.
Tips For Coping With Tinnitus
The more you understand about tinnitus, the better you can plan for and manage the effects. And, because there’s no known cure for tinnitus, management of symptoms is vital. There’s no reason that your quality of life has to suffer if you establish the proper treatment.
Think About Tinnitus Retraining Therapy
Many treatments for tinnitus incorporate some kind of tinnitus retraining therapy (or TRT). The analogy that gets floated around frequently is the sound of rain on your rooftops: very obvious at the beginning of a storm, but you stop focusing on it after a while and that rain-on-rooftops sound fades into the background. TRT uses the same principle to teach 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
One of the reasons that tinnitus can be so frustrating is because your brain is constantly looking for the source of that sound, trying to signal you to its presence. So supplying your brain with a range of different sounds to focus on can be very helpful. You could:
- Do some drawing or painting while playing music.
- Take a book to the park and listen to the birds while reading.
- Take a bubble bath and read a book.
You get the point: engaging your brain can help you manage your tinnitus.
Meditation, as an alternate approach, helps you concentrate your attention on a mantra, or your breathing which helps take your focus away from your tinnitus. Another advantage of meditation, at least for some, is that it can decrease blood pressure which is a known cause of tinnitus symptoms.
Manage Tinnitus With a Hearing Aid
Several hearing aid companies have manufactured hearing aids that help reduce the ringing in your ear. Hearing aids are an ideal solution because you put them in and can forget about them the whole day, you won’t need to carry around a white noise machine or constantly use an app. The ringing will be handled by the hearing aid and you can relax and enjoy your life.
Have a Plan (And Stick to it)
Making a plan for unforeseen surges can help you control your stress-out reaction, and that can help you decrease certain tinnitus episodes (or at least keep from worsening them). Pack a bag of practical items to bring with you. Anything that will help you be more ready and keep you from having a panic attack, like making a list of helpful exercises, will go a long way toward management.
The Key is Management
Chronic tinnitus is a condition that has no known cure. But that doesn’t mean that individuals can’t manage and treat their tinnitus. Make certain you are managing your tinnitus not suffering from it by utilizing these tips and any others that you find helpful.