Is the ringing in your ears stopping you from sleeping? It’s not necessary. Here are a few guidelines for quieting that aggravating, constant noise so you can sleep better.
Your sleep habits can be drastically impacted by moderate to severe tinnitus. In the middle of the day, you’re distracted by noise and activity so your tinnitus may seem less noticeable. But at night, when there’s less noise, tinnitus can seem louder and more stressful.
The good news is, if you would like to fall asleep easier, there are some things you can do.
Below are 5 tips to falling asleep in spite of your tinnitus.
1. Don’t Resist The Noise
While this may appear difficult to impossible, focusing on the noise really makes it worse. If you start to become frustrated, your blood pressure increases and this causes tinnitus symptoms to get worse. You will feel worse the more you dwell on it and your frustration will get worse. Focusing on something else and utilizing the strategies below can help make the noise seem softer.
2. Follow a Nighttime Schedule
Developing good sleep habits like winding down at least a half hour before bed, dimming the lights and going to bed at the same time every night helps condition your body to feel sleepy at the right time. This will make it less difficult to fall asleep when you’re ready.
Stress has also been linked to tinnitus. Developing habits to lessen your stress level before bed can also be helpful, such as:
- Listening to mellow music or relaxing sounds
- Doing yoga and stretching
- Concentrating on thoughts that make you happy and calm
- Staying away from drinking alcohol
- At least a few hours before bed, steer clear of eating
- Doing deep breathing or a short meditation
- Turn down the heat in your bedroom
- Reading a book in a quiet room
- Dimming the lights at least one hour before you go to bed
Teaching your body to transition into sleep by getting into a predictable regimen before bed helps you transition away from the stresses of the day.
3. Watch What You Eat
Artificial sweeteners and alcohol are known triggers for tinnitus. If you find, after tracking your diet and symptoms, that certain foods trigger or worsen your tinnitus, make it a practice to stay away from them. You may feel that you still have to have your morning coffee, but avoid caffeine in the afternoon or at nights.
4. The Common Causes of Tinnitus Should be Avoided
Ringing or other noises in your ears can be caused by many things. Dealing with the cause of tinnitus can help it get better or even prevent it altogether. You can do a few things to help:
- Assess your lifestyle to identify whether you’re subjected to loud noises (and how to limit exposure)
- To find out if one of your medications is causing tinnitus symptoms check with your doctor
- If you have anxiety or depression, get it treated
- Get help for underlying conditions such as high blood pressure
- Protect your ears
- Go for your yearly exam
- Use headphones at a lower volume instead of earbuds
You might be able to better deal with it if you can identify what’s causing the ringing.
5. Make an Appointment to See a Hearing Specialist
A professional hearing test can help you determine what’s causing your tinnitus and indicate possible solutions. There are several ways hearing professionals can help you take care of your tinnitus including:
- Fitting you for hearing aids made to cancel out the noise
- Enrolling in therapy to train your brain to not hear the tinnitus
- Help you manage thought patterns revealed to make tinnitus worse by recommending cognitive behavior therapy
To speed up recovery and sleep better at night, seek professional help. Schedule an appointment with your hearing care professional to find out if you can get some help with your tinnitus.