Are you being kept up by ringing in your ears? You don’t have to just live with it. If you want to get a better nights sleep, think about these guidelines to tone down this irritating persistent sound.
Moderate to severe tinnitus can definitely throw a monkey wrench in your sleep cycle. During the day, you’re preoccupied with noise and activity so your tinnitus may seem less noticeable. But during the night, when there’s less noise, tinnitus can get louder and more stressful.
The good news is, if you want to have an easier time falling asleep, there are some things you can do.
Below are 5 tips to falling asleep in spite of your tinnitus.
1. Don’t Fight The Noise
Even though this may sound difficult, if you pay attention to it, it gets worse. This is in part because for many people a rise in blood pressure can worsen tinnitus symptoms. So the more frustrated you become dwelling on it, the worse you are probably going to feel. Focusing on something else and using the strategies below can help make the noise seem quieter.
2. Establish a Nighttime Routine
Condition your body to get sleepy at the right time by creating healthy sleep habits such as dimming the lights, winding down at least a 30 minutes before you go to bed, and going to bed at the same time each night. When you’re ready to fall asleep it will be easier.
Tinnitus has also been associated with stress. Developing habits to lower your stress level before bed can also help, such as:
- Stretching or doing yoga
- At least a few hours before you go to bed, avoid eating
- Staying away from drinking alcohol
- Turn down the temperature in your bedroom
- Dimming the lights at least one hour before you go to bed
- Concentrating on thoughts that make you relaxed and happy
- Reading a book in a quiet room
- Doing a quick meditation or a deep breathing exercise
- Listening to quiet sounds or relaxing music
Getting into a predictable schedule before bed helps you shift from the stresses of the day into night and teaches your body to transition into sleep.
3. Watch What You Eat
There are known triggers to tinnitus such as alcohol and artificial sweeteners. Steer clear of certain foods if you find, after monitoring your diet and symptoms, that they trigger or worsen your tinnitus. Caffeine is also a trigger so at least avoid having any in the afternoon and evening.
4. Avoid Common Causes of Tinnitus
Ringing or other noises in your ears can be caused by many things. Addressing the cause can help avoid tinnitus or make it better. Here are a few things you can do to help:
- Safeguard your ears
- Don’t use earbuds…use headphones instead and keep the sound level low
- If you have inherent conditions such as high blood pressure, get help for it
- Go over your medications with your doctor to see if one may be causing tinnitus symptoms
- Go for your yearly checkup
- If you have anxiety or depression, get it treated
- Assess your lifestyle to determine whether you’re subjected to loud noises (and how to limit exposure)
You may be able to better deal with it if you can discover what’s causing the ringing.
5. Get Examined by a Hearing Care Specialist
A professional hearing test can help you find potential solutions as well as identify what might be causing your tinnitus. There are several ways hearing professionals can help you manage your tinnitus including:
- Fitting you for hearing aids designed to cancel out the noise
- Help you train your brain not to hear tinnitus by signing you up for therapy
- Suggesting cognitive behavioral therapy to deal with thought patterns shown to make tinnitus worse
Expert help can speed up healing and help you sleep better at night. To see if you can get some help with your tinnitus, schedule your appointment with a hearing care expert.