Tinnitus sucks. I’ve had ringing in my ears before but never like this. I’ve been looking for ways to alleviate it but only some things help. The problem is some of it is counterintuitive and some of it is catch-22. Yesterday I went for a long walk and it disappeared. When I got home it came back worse. I did a Google to ask why. The first thing I saw was anxiety can make it worse because it causes your body to release adrenaline and cortisol. That makes sense because it seems to have gotten worse around the time my anxiety was out of control. The catch here is worrying about the tinnitus causes anxiety. One of the ways to combat anxiety is with exercise. Another catch. Exercise releases adrenaline which makes the tinnitus worse until it wears off. I have been proving that to myself by taking long bike rides trying to help my anxiety. That helped both the anxiety and stopped the ringing until I got home and it came back worse than ever.
Another thing that helps is being outside because it helps calm you down and the sounds around you mask the symptoms. That is great but the catch there doesn’t really make sense. Going from a noisy environment into a quiet one makes it sound louder. That is what I figured out on my own. Another tip for anxiety is meditation which I do but lying down in a quiet space also makes it louder. This causes more anxiety! Help me! Two things I read I had already found out on my own. Listening to low volume ambient music or sounds helps a little. That is the reason I ordered noise cancelling earbuds. I hope they work! Also, distracting myself by concentrating on something else, like writing this now is good. But there is only so long I can sit here at the computer unless people want to read 10 of my blog posts a day. I didn’t think so.
I mostly found I have been driving myself crazy with the things that were helping me also making it worse. Ouch! Yesterday I went for a 3 hour bicycle ride and didn’t hear anything in my ears at all. But like they said, it’s a trade off. It is worth it to me because I get the exercise and less anxiety but I don’t know what I will do when winter comes. So much for staying in the moment! I did start to wonder why it went away when my daughter took me out driving around Sunday. Sometimes after it subsides a bit I am able to do a meditation which also helps. That is good because I can do it while staying inside. The biggest problem I am having is the anxiety the tinnitus is causing makes it worse. The more I think about it.. Ugh.
The website I found had a lot of good information but at the bottom they were trying to sell me aids. One was a white noise machine to put in the room with me. Another was an earpiece that emits white noise. That is what I am hoping for with the ear buds. Except with soft music. They were also trying to sell downloads of nature sounds and ambient music. I can get that for free on YouTube.
I am hoping it is anxiety related but that also makes me worry if it is permanent. What if? What if? What if? Oh man…