Topic 13: Natural ways to treat tinnitus
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There’s no magic bullet when it comes to treating tinnitus, but there are techniques you can employ to help manage and reduce symptoms.
Tinnitus occurs when the brain is trying to compensate for a lack of sound and often presents itself as a persistent ringing or buzzing in the ear.
Symptoms vary, with some people only hearing a mild ringing when it’s quiet and those with more severe cases reporting a constant jackhammer-like noise.
As there is medical treatment for tinnitus, audiologists recommend natural methods to help drown out the sounds of tinnitus and train the brain to ignore symptoms.
It sounds simple, but exercise can be an effective way to help treat and manage tinnitus. Many people find their tinnitus symptoms most bothersome when they’re lying in bed at night and this is exacerbated if you’ve been in a sedentary state for most of the day.
Exercising for at least 30 minutes a day can help tire the body and mind and make it easier to fall asleep at night. Australian Hearing audiologist Catherine Hart says people who exercise tend to be less stressed about their tinnitus and enjoy a better night’s sleep.
Get your hands dirty
Grab the watering can and head out into the garden! The soothing sounds of running water help mask tinnitus by flooding the brain with low-level sound, which is one of the most effective way to treat the condition. The simple act of watering the garden helps relax the mind and offers respite to any persistent ringing or buzzing in the ears.
Wind down at night
Australian Hearing recommends establishing a nighttime routine to help you relax at the end of the day and ease yourself into sleep. Simple steps such as going to sleep at the same time every night and avoiding screen time an hour before bed allow the mind begin to relax. Additionally, listening to low-level sounds or music while lying in bed helps cut through the silence that triggers tinnitus.
If you choose to listen to music while in bed, Hart recommends something slow and without lyrics. If that’s not your cup of tea, the hum of a fan or air-conditioner are also effective.
Tinnitus can be triggered by a build up of earwax, which blocks the auditory system from reaching a signal. This causes the brain to strain for sound and results in that all-too-familiar ringing or buzzing in the ears.
Your GP can remove the excess wax for you or you can self-irrigate your ears by following these simple steps.
Do you have tinnitus? How do you manage the condition?