Healthy sleep is the key to human spiritual and physical health. On average, a person spends about a third of his life dreaming. The body rests and restores its strength during this time. This affects how the body will function during the day. In addition, the hormone melatonin is produced at night, which regulates many processes in our body.
It is difficult to overestimate the importance of healthy sleep. Unfortunately, many negative reasons interfere with proper sleep. This leads to insomnia and the gradual development of health problems. One of these reasons is the noise in the ears. Many people do not know how serious this is until they are faced with the problem personally. Let’s figure it out together, how tinnitus affects sleep quality, and is it possible to help a person in this situation.
How are the noise in the ears and sleep disturbances connected?
According to statistics, about 15% of adult Americans suffer from tinnitus. Patients describe it as a ringing, buzzing, squeak, hiss, or buzz in the ear or head. Someone hears sounds with a certain frequency, and someone hears them constantly. Moreover, it is impossible to establish a relationship between the appearance of tinnitus and the presence of some external stimuli. Moreover, it is impossible to predict the exact time when a symptom appears. With age, the frequency and severity of unpleasant symptoms increase.
The noise in the ears often occurs with a headache and dizziness. A feeling of pressure may appear in the ears or temples. A person with tinnitus becomes irritable, easily loses his temper, and often experiences stress. Apathy and depressive moods are gradually developing. Treatment for tinnitus directly depends on the cause of the problem.
Risk factors of tinnitus
The mechanism of the development of tinnitus depends on many factors. It is associated with impaired functioning of the auditory system and the background activity of individual parts of the brain at any level of this system: from the outer ear to the cerebral cortex. A healthy person does not perceive sounds that do not carry the information load. And the patient with tinnitus focuses on different sound sensations.
The noise can range from a low roar to a high pitched ringing, which occurs in one or both ears. Sometimes the noise is very loud. It interferes with concentration or leads to psychological disorders.
For each reason, the sound is expressed in its way. Despite different reasons, they lead to the fact that a person has serious difficulties in everyday life and has problems with sleep.
What do the studies say?
According to study among the population, about 50% of persons suffering from tinnitus have problems with sleep. Most people need a certain state of the surrounding environment, or rather “silence” for sleep. If the sound of the air conditioner, music, or surrounding noise can take the background, then the sounds in your ears and head cannot.
Tinnitus and Sleep Issues are closely interconnected. The stronger the symptoms of tinnitus manifest, the more difficult it is for a person to sleep. The more problems with sleep, the more stress, loss of strength, and depressive moods. The more stress, the stronger the symptoms of tinnitus can appear.
Scientists have long noted the connection between sleep problems and chronic tinnitus. The results of their studies indicate the specifics of our brain.
During sleep, the body switches several times between the five stages of the brainwork. At the same time, the brain largely blocks external stimuli. That is why we can easily fall asleep to a working TV or pleasant music, rain noise, ocean sounds, etc. During ¾ of the total sleep, the brain produces various types of wave activity, which slowly spread back and forward through the brain. The first activity suppresses the signals that cause noise in the ears. However, this activity is gradually decreasing. When the wave is less intense, the noise in the ears can intensify, awakening a person.
Why is it important?
Understanding the processes inside the brain during sleep is key to a tinnitus cure. Scientists suggest that sleep can help adjust the activity of the brain associated with the noise in the ears. The results of new studies can help develop more effective methods of treating tinnitus, blocking the problem at the level of brain activity. Therefore, work in this direction continues and promises a positive result.
How to sleep better?
Tinnitus and sleep disturbances are interconnected. Therefore, to improve the quality of sleep, it is necessary to solve the problem of sounds in the head. The course of treatment will directly depend on the established cause of the tinnitus. Therefore, if you experience symptoms of the disorder, be sure to contact a doctor. Only after careful diagnosis, the specialist will prescribe the most effective treatment that will reduce the negative effect.
Deeper sleep for people with tinnitus is possible. Dr. Stella Fulman prepared the following tips for tinnitus and better sleep. Follow them to reduce the likelihood of insomnia to a minimum:
Live following your biological rhythms. Sleep at night
Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time, regardless of the day of the week
Prepare correctly for sleep. It helps the rapid “disconnection” of the brain. Do not read books and do not watch TV. Such activities require concentration. They do not allow the brain to relax and relieve fatigue. It is better to turn on quiet music or pleasant sounds, for example, birds, the noise of the forest, etc. Make a light stretch. Moreover, meditation favorably affects the body and consciousness before bedtime
Many people are soothing certain smells. For example, the smell of lavender is considered the most common soothing “sleepy” smell. Others prefer the smells of vanilla, cinnamon, or other pleasant aromas. Candles and other flavoring items will help to fill your bedroom with aromas
Use white noise. Does Tinnitus hardly annoy you? Cut it with the help of devices producing white noise. Many items can produce white noise, including special white noise generators and even an application for a smartphone
Do not take a cold shower before bedtime; perform the procedure in the morning. In the evening it is best to take a warm bath or shower
Give up bad habits, including coffee
These simple tips will be an excellent addition to the treatment of tinnitus. Perform them and enjoy a good sleep!
About Dr Stella Fulman
Dr. Stella Fulman, AU.D., CCC-A received her Bachelors and Masters degrees in Audiology from Brooklyn College in 2004 and her Doctorate of Audiology from Salus University in 2008. [ Learn More ]