Depression and Tinnitus: a Conversation

Tinnitus and Depression

Depression and Tinnitus Discussion Plus Possible Options

If you have been feeling helpless or depressed due to the persistent ringing in your ears, you are not alone. In fact, many previous patients reported a similar experience. It takes a lot of courage to live with depression and tinnitus, regardless of how you have had to deal with it. The situation could get even worse if the doctor says there is nothing they can do for you.  

However, this is not exactly true. In reality, they are simply saying they do not possess the pill or surgery expertise to help cure your tinnitus immediately. It is understandable if you panic at such a moment. But take a moment to breathe because several medical personnel were never fully informed about the connection between the emotional brain and auditory brain. While there is no known pill or surgery for an immediate cure at the moment, there are several ways to help ease your tinnitus. Find out in this article.

What can you do about Tinnitus?

Whether you have been told there is a solution or not, you are about to find out possible efforts to make life more comfortable for yourself. First off, be informed that depression may spring up from tinnitus. Also, the condition may worsen the symptoms of depression and anxiety. Learning to accept that tinnitus may never really go away could be difficult. 

However, there is a considerable gap between “my tinnitus will leave” and “my tinnitus is giving me depression, and I can’t live with it.” It’s important to navigate the gap smartly as it will play a crucial role in your life quality in relation to tinnitus. In most cases, tinnitus patients recount that they are sad and depressed. Some even complain that they cannot live with the symptoms anymore as it gets worse. 

Be Honest

In the course of recounting their experience, they often evolve to the stage of acceptance and finally becoming honest with themselves. Eventually, they ask what can be done at that moment or in the next few days or weeks to impact their lives positively. Once you reach this stage, it’s a big turning around as it will influence your tinnitus-induced stress and possible depression. 

At this junction, you are essentially taking charge of what is possible and what’s not. From here, you’ll start finding the strength and knowledge to navigate your life with tinnitus. Overall, it will start improving your life quality as you become more committed to your path. Everyone has a process of negative thinking, which is quite powerful. By understanding how your mind patterns this negative thought, it’s a huge step towards regaining your control over tinnitus. 

Tinnitus and the Brain: What you should know

Our hearing system receives signals that create tinnitus. This happens in the auditory brain, which is connected to parts of our emotional brain, otherwise known as the limbic system. When the ringing in ears sends a signal to the limbic system, the emotional brain reacts with a heightened response as it doesn’t know what the information is about. This stems from the fear of something beyond ourselves that comes into our environment. 

In truth, the ringing sound is not really dangerous. It is simply a response from the physical body that is created to get your attention. The powerful aspect is when the emotional brain sends a signal back to your auditory system. Essentially, the limbic system is asking the auditory brain to amplify the sound, believing they need to pay extra attention to it. Now, the signal is sent back to the emotional brain in an amplified form; then, the limbic system becomes more stressed as it cannot make any meaning out of it. 

This experience is called a feedback loop, in which one signal influences the other. Consequently, the signal gets louder and makes the host become more anxious and uncomfortable. It’s advisable to consider how the feedback loop influences your tinnitus or other aspects of your life, which is connected to stress, depression, or anxiety. Advisably, consider seeing a talk therapist, tinnitus specialist, or wellness coach to secure direct guidance on how the emotional brain relates with your auditory system. These experts can also tell you possible solutions.

Tinnitus and Bad Mood

The relationship between depression and tinnitus

From sadness to depression, you may experience many difficult moments with tinnitus. In these situations, you wish that the pulsatile tinnitus could just leave you alone. On the contrary, the tinnitus will continue choosing to stay. Take a moment to breathe and think of what you can control in the situation. Is it possible to improve the situation with direct action?

Consider asking yourself, “what positive action step can I take?” “What would be the best result from this change?” and on the contrary, “what would be the worst result?” Most times than not, making a change to improve a situation does pave the way for positive progress, including when it doesn’t happen immediately. In the worst-case scenario, the change doesn’t make any changes to your current situation.

Across the journey, you’ll learn several life lessons and a lot about yourself. Without any doubt, a combination of motivation to learn about tinnitus and the right guidance will help you understand the balance between your auditory system and emotional brain. Now, if you take a direct action daily that aligns with your value, there is a high chance that your tinnitus will improve considerably. 

Final note

It’s highly recommended that you consider speaking with a therapist, psychiatrist, or psychologist if you have been experiencing sadness or depression in the previous months. This could be clinical depression. However, with a therapy session, you can significantly improve the situation. Don’t forget to take one step at a time as you walk through the tinnitus journey.

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