That constant low-level ringing in your ears.
It’s easy to think it couldn’t possibly be all that bad – if you don’t have it.
But if you do have it, you know it can be that bad.
And since it’s often related to aging – it’s most common in people over 40 - just because you don’t have it now doesn’t mean you won’t have it later.
Which is why we’re looking at remedies for tinnitus you might not know about.
The Types of Tinnitus
Almost everyone will experience a ringing, humming, or roaring sound in their ears at some point. But that’s not tinnitus.
That sound is temporary, lasting a few seconds to a few minutes and then going away to leave you in silence once again.
Full-fledged tinnitus is constant. If you’re awake, you can hear it. It may be a ringing – but it may be any number of other sounds as well.
Some people report roaring, hissing, or a tinkling sound. If it doesn’t go away, and no one else can hear it, it’s all tinnitus.
The two main types of tinnitus are pulsatile tinnitus and nonpulsatile tinnitus.
Pulsatile tinnitus means the sound pulses – generally keeping time with your own heartbeat. The pulse happens when the muscles around your ear move, when there are changes in your ear canal, or if you’re experiencing blood flow issues in your head or neck.
Nonpulsatile tinnitus is a steadier sound, without a rhythm. It’s usually related to the nerves in your ears, and may be in either or both ears.
Luckily, the remedies for tinnitus tend to be helpful regardless of which type you have.
What Causes Tinnitus
As previously mentioned, tinnitus is most often caused by age-related hearing loss, but it can occur after any type of hearing loss.
However, before you start to worry about permanent hearing loss, know that tinnitus can be a symptom of just about any other ear issue or concern you may have.
Tinnitus can be caused by something as innocuous as a build-up of ear wax to an injury to exercising incorrectly, as well as hearing loss.
It can also be caused by certain medications. So before you deal with home remedies, make sure your ears are clean, you haven’t taken a blow to the head or neck, and you aren’t straining when you work out!
And always talk to your doctor if tinnitus appears shortly after you start a new medication or supplement.
Remedies for Tinnitus
Unfortunately, if you have permanent tinnitus and it’s not just a symptom of something easily handled, there’s no cure for it.
But there are remedies that can make having it more bearable.
1. Let yourself be distracted. A quiet room can make tinnitus sound louder and seem more annoying. Instead of trying to ignore it, one of the more common remedies for tinnitus is to have a cover noise. Listen to music. Have a fan on. Invest in a white noise machine. None of the alternate sounds will completely mask the tinnitus, but they can make it less obvious.
2. Keep track of your tinnitus. Many people discover triggers that make their tinnitus worse. Keep a journal so you learn what kicks your tinnitus up. Once you’ve learned what irritates it, you can focus your remedies by working to avoid those specific triggers. Common triggers are alcohol, nicotine, and loud noises.
3. Stay calm. While a constant noise in your ear may make this one difficult, managing stress is recognized as one of the remedies of tinnitus. So work on relaxing. If it’s just by taking deep breaths or if it’s as organized as a yoga class, reducing stress may help mitigate the impact of tinnitus.
4. Check your zinc. Some people who are dealing with tinnitus also have low zinc levels. Next time your doctor runs blood work have him check your zinc levels. A zinc supplement may turn out to be a helpful remedy for tinnitus!
5. Steer clear of NSAIDS. Oh, those drugstore pain killers that are so easy to pick up and work so well – and have so many side effects! Aspirin and other NSAIDS can make tinnitus worse. Look for alternate ways to deal with your pain, so you aren’t swapping pain for tinnitus.
No, you can’t cure tinnitus – but you don’t have to be a slave to the sound either. Not anymore, and not with these five remedies for tinnitus.