10 Things That May Make Tinnitus Worse

Tinnitus is an irritating, painful condition that involves ringing in the ears. It can make it difficult to do basic things like have a conversation or sleep.

If you want to know what makes tinnitus worse, then read on:

  • Avoid loud noises: Experts agree that among the things that make tinnitus worse, loud noises are at the top of the list. This includes watching TV with the volume turned up, listening to loud music and operating loud machinery. All of these can cause short-term ringing in the ears or permanent hearing loss. Find ways to protect your ears, and avoid loud noises whenever possible.
  • Lessen stress: It’s easier said than done, but reducing stress can have a positive effect on hearing. If you have a stressful job or home life, you may want to look into ways to reduce this burden through meditation or therapy.
  • Medication: There are some prescription and over-the-counter medications that cause tinnitus as a side effect. Do research on any drugs you’re currently taking, and see if tinnitus is listed as a side effect. It’s possible your doctor will be able to switch you to a different treatment to avoid this side effect.
  • Jaw issues: Problems with the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) can lead to ear pain and tinnitus. This is often correlated with pain while talking or chewing. See your dentist or oral surgeon to diagnose and treat this issue.
  • Illness: If you experienced a long, lingering cold that just wouldn’t go away, it’s possible that your tinnitus is related to an infection. If the ringing in your ears doesn’t dissipate a week after you became sick, it’s time to see your doctor to investigate whether you have a sinus or ear infection.
  • Diet: Some people experience issues with tinnitus depending on what they eat—or don’t eat. An iron deficiency has been known to be linked with tinnitus. Some cases are also related to consumption of artificial sweeteners and caffeine.
  • Blood pressure: One common cause of tinnitus is high blood pressure. This affects the supply of blood to the inner ear. Over time, high blood pressure can be associated with permanent hearing loss.
  • Alcohol use: While you might think that glass of wine with dinner is harmless or even good for you, the reality is it could be making your tinnitus worse. That’s because alcohol consumption is tied to blood pressure.
  • Air pressure: If you’ve noticed that your tinnitus worsens when it rains, then it could be that your tinnitus is tied to weather conditions. This is because your inner ear is sensitive to changes in barometric pressure.
  • Mental health: Depression and anxiety are often correlated with tinnitus. That said, the relationship between the two is complex because increased tinnitus may cause a deterioration in mental health.

If you’re suffering from tinnitus, know that you’re not alone. The expert team at Vancouver Hearing Aid Center is here to help. With more than 50 years of experience, we can help restore your hearing. Stop by our location today or give us a call to find out more.