Why Does Alcohol Seem to Reduce the Severity of My Tinnitus? Coincidence or Not?

Discussion in 'Support' started by micketb, Jul 26, 2022.

    1. micketb

      micketb Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Hearing Loss
      Hi all,

      I've have had tinnitus from around 2015 but generally it didn't bother me during day to day life, only at night. However, around August 2021 it became significantly worse in my left side. On another note, I've drank quiet heavily during my 30's (41 now), a few attempts at sobriety but nothing more than a few months at a time.

      Now this kinda brings me to October 2021. I'd started drinking on a evening quite regularly again and I had found that when I was drinking on an evening, I would totally forget about my tinnitus. Another period of sobriety followed in January 2022 to April 2022. During this time I made an appt to see an ENT specialist as my tinnitus was heavily impacting on my mental health and ability to live/work etc. Pretty much from my first appt with the doctor (beginning of May 2022) I had next to no issue with my tinnitus, at the same time drinking slowly crept into my life again. From May 2022 until present, I have been drinking heavily and tinnitus is no longer a problem. Until 2 days ago, I decided I needed to really try put in a good period of sobriety and within 1 day my tinnitus is just as bad as it ever was. This weirdly (or possibly not) coincided with a final appt with a hearing specialist. I had said that my tinnitus isn't really bothering me currently so we decided that CBT therapy wasn't suitable at the moment.

      Am I going mad and seeing correlation/causation that isn't there? My thoughts are:
      1. Alcohol distracts me enough to forget tinnitus?
      2. Alcohol has some other effect on my body that is actually reducing the severity? (I read that it's blood thinning effect could possibly improve blood flow to the ear and reducing severity of tinnitus.)
      3. Psychologically, because I was going through a process of getting checks on my hearing and hoping for a solution, I'd allowed myself to put it aside but now that process is over, the tinnitus it back?
      4. Complete coincidence?
      I should say during January-April 2022 I was very active (10 hours a week for an event), eating well, no alcohol, no smoking, lots of weight lost, very low stress (except being annoyed by tinnitus) and no improvement in my tinnitus.

      Apologies for the huge post. Any insights or suggestions much appreciated. Thanks.
       
    2. dan
      Chatty

      dan Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Toronto, Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise
      I once read a story about a guy who could only reduce his tinnitus by drinking whiskey daily.

      He figured it was better living as an alcoholic than suffering with tinnitus.

      I'm guessing for a very few lucky folks, alcohol hits the right receptors to silence tinnitus.
       
    3. Social Maven

      Social Maven Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Jan. 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ototoxic Drug
      I'm the opposite. I had 4 oz. of wine because my doctor suggested it might relax me. I had a spike in my already high-pitched tinnitus for 3 days. I wish I could have some alcohol once in a while to relax. I know one thing, each time I have taken a drug, my tinnitus got worse. So I live a life in pain and fear b/c I'll never take another medication again Spent thousands on all types of therapies. Doesn't work. The fear of ototoxic drugs is real. That's the worst part of having tinnitus.
       
    4. AnthonyMcDonald
      Confused

      AnthonyMcDonald Member

      Location:
      Russia
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2021
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      "Alcohol is believed to mimic GABA's effect in the brain, binding to GABA receptors and inhibiting neuronal signaling. Alcohol also inhibits the major excitatory neurotransmitter, glutamate, particularly at the N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) glutamate receptor."
       
    5. GuitarMan

      GuitarMan Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Mild hearing loss due to high volume sounds
      Hmm... so maybe drinking more might help my tinnitus? That's an experiment I'd be happy to try! So far I haven't noticed any adverse effects from a glass or two of wine every night. Maybe a few more glasses are in order!
       
    6. peejay501
      Frustrated

      peejay501 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Work related
      Drinking alcohol lessens my tinnitus. Very rarely will my tinnitus will lessen on its own, very rarely. However, a few cocktails seem to lessen it considerably... for a short period anyway. I'm not advocating 'converting' to alcoholism, but when all else fails, you go with what works, occasionally...
       
      • Agree Agree x 2
    7. kingsfan
      Mellow

      kingsfan Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Southern California
      Tinnitus Since:
      9-17-20 / 10-20-20 / 3-31-21 / 5-23-21
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      turning everything up to 11
      The problem with drinking alcohol regularly, is it depletes the brain's ability to synthesize GABA and may potentially increase your tinnitus over time.
       
    8. GuitarMan

      GuitarMan Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Mild hearing loss due to high volume sounds
      Is there any research that shows a direct link between alcohol and an increase in tinnitus severity?
       
    9. Strawberryblonde

      Strawberryblonde Member

      Location:
      UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      1st (12/2015) 2nd habituation (5/2022)
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ??? See below.
      Alcohol, especially wine, makes me relaxed enough to tune my tinnitus out, or at least not care about it so much. Anything that helps really.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    10. Ola

      Ola Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2022
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud Concert: acoustic trauma
      I usually don’t drink alcohol, but when I do have one, it definitely spikes my tinnitus for a few minutes.
       
    11. Stuart-T

      Stuart-T Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2022
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear wax or COVID-19 infection
      The chief medical officer of the UK stated that any level of alcohol consumption carries an increased risk of a range of cancers. Personally I try my best to avoid alcohol - the fact you start to feel woozy in the head after a drink tells me all I need to know about its impact. However - I may be tempted to try this out - maybe a glass of wine or small bottle of beer to see if there is a reduction. I will report back.
       
Loading...

Share This Page