Per the American Tinnitus Associations (ATA) website: “Put simply, tinnitus is the perception of sound in the ears or head where no external source is present. Some call it “ringing in the ears” or “head noise”.
Tinnitus has come to the forefront of newspapers and magazines as of late, prompting patients to come in and ask “What can I do to get rid of my tinnitus?” Many treatment options are available, and we touch on several. Today, we will focus on Alternative Solutions.
Per the ATA, Alternative Treatments include:
Minerals such as magnesium or zinc, B vitamins or LipoFlavinoids are sometimes prescribed for relieving tinnitus. [Procedures such as acupuncture, cranio-sacral therapy, magnets, hyperbaric oxygen, or hypnosis are also occasionally tried, and will be discussed at a later date]. Your doctor might give you clearance to try them for tinnitus given that they generally carry little risk to health. We do NOT advocate/champion any of these; this is purely for informational purposes.
Being around loud noises may cause your body to lose magnesium. Living in cities exposes you to loud noises every day. A study published in the “Occupational Medicine” journal in February 2001 showed that exposing people to damaging loud noises daily caused their bodies to excrete magnesium. Taking magnesium supplements may decrease noise-induced ear damage, which is a cause of tinnitus.
The antioxidant activity of zinc may help protect cells from damage caused by free radicals, compounds that can damage cells and proteins by altering their chemical structure. One double-blind, placebo-controlled study published in 2003 in “Otology and Neurotology” found that patients with tinnitus have low blood zinc levels, and zinc supplementation at a dosage of 50 mg daily significantly improved symptoms associated with tinnitus.
LipoFlavinoids are a safe dietary ear health supplement containing the B complex group of vitamins in a base of lipotropic agents, such as choline, inositol and pantothenic acid, plus vitamin C and citric bioflavonoids. It helps to improve circulation in the inner ear. Lipoflavinoids enhance overall inner ear health making it less susceptible to tinnitus and reducing the intensity of unwanted ear ringing. It is recommended that individuals complete a full 60 day trial. Not everyone will obtain relief. Typically noticeable improvements are noted within 60 days, though it can take three to six months for some to find the full benefit.
As we know, many vitamins and minerals are essential to our health, but the above have been found to be especially beneficial to ear health. Please note, everyone will not receive the same benefits from these supplements. Cost versus benefit must also be considered and we have found some of our patients discontinued using these supplements due to the high cost. We advise you to be aware of your intake and consult your physician as necessary if you have any questions.