How to Sleep in Spite of The Ringing in Your Ears
The Hearing Clinic - Scarborough, ON

Woman who is having trouble sleeping because she has tinnitus.

Are you being kept awake by ringing in your ears? You don’t need to just live with it. Here are a few tricks for quieting that annoying, constant sound so you can get some sleep.

Moderate to severe tinnitus can really throw a monkey wrench in your sleeping habits. During the daytime, tinnitus can be less obvious because you’re distracted by noise and activity. But during the night, when there’s less noise, tinnitus can seem louder and more disturbing.

The good news is, if you want to have an easier time falling asleep, there are some things you can do.

Five tips for falling asleep when you have tinnitus are shown below.

1. Don’t Fight The Noise

While this may appear overwhelming, focusing on the noise actually makes it worse. This is to some extent because for many people a rise in blood pressure can make tinnitus symptoms worse. So the more frustrated you become thinking about it, the worse you are probably going to feel. You can make the sound fade away a little by thinking about something else and utilizing the following techniques.

2. Establish a Nighttime Schedule

Formulating healthy sleep habits such as 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 correct time. When you’re ready to fall asleep it will be easier.

Tinnitus has also been associated with stress. It also helps to develop habits to de-stress before bed.

  • Making your bedroom a little cooler
  • Bathing
  • Listening to soft music or gentle sounds
  • At least a few hours before you go to bed, avoid eating
  • Concentrating on thoughts that make you relaxed and happy
  • At least one hour before going to bed, dim the lights
  • Staying away from drinking alcohol
  • Doing deep breathing or a short meditation
  • Sitting in a quiet room and reading a book
  • Stretching or doing yoga

Training your body to transition into sleep by getting into a predictable routine before bed helps you shift away from the stresses of the day.

3. Pay Attention to What You Eat

There are known triggers to tinnitus like alcohol and artificial sweeteners. Stay away from certain foods if you discover, 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 at night.

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. Here are several things you can do to help:

  • Use headphones at a lower volume instead of earbuds
  • Go for your yearly exam
  • Protect your ears
  • If you have anxiety or depression, get it treated
  • To find out if one of your medications is causing tinnitus symptoms consult your doctor
  • In order to identify whether your subjected to loud noises, and how to reduce that exposure, you need to assess your lifestyle
  • Get help for inherent conditions such as high blood pressure

You may be able to better manage it if you can identify what’s causing the ringing.

5. Get Examined by a Hearing Care Specialist

A professional hearing test can help you determine what’s causing your tinnitus and indicate possible treatments. There are several ways hearing professionals can help you manage your tinnitus including:

  • Fitting you for hearing aids made to cancel out the noise
  • Enrolling in treatment to train your brain not to hear the tinnitus
  • Suggesting cognitive behavioral treatment to deal with thought patterns shown to make tinnitus worse

To speed up healing and sleep better at night, seek professional help. To find out if you can get some help with your tinnitus, schedule your appointment with a hearing care expert.

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