Mornings can be a truly hard time for any full-grown adult. It’s the start of yet another long and hard day that requires a lot of energy and will power to get through. Many of us like to get started with a certain morning ritual, and for most that involves slinging down a freshly brewed cup of coffee.
Whether you brew it yourself, use instant coffee, or grab a cup at your local coffee shop on the way to work, I think we would all agree that coffee comes second only to life itself; some people aren’t even fully functioning humans until coffee jump-starts their systems.
However, there are some problems that coffee can cause, and this article will discuss its impact on tinnitus. To be fair, we are here to talk about the impact that caffeine in general has on tinnitus symptoms. This can include soda, tea, coffee, and other sorts of drinks. If you have tinnitus, you could probably use a jump start in the morning more than anyone else.
After all, living with a constant ringing, pulsating, beeping, whirring, or whooshing sound in your ears will make it hard for anybody to start their day. You might think that your morning cup of coffee or that refreshing ice cold Coca-Cola isn’t anything to worry about, until your ears start ringing even worse than before. Let’s take a closer look at caffeine’s impact on tinnitus right now.
Caffeine and Blood Pressure
One of the things which caffeine does to the human body is to increase blood pressure. Having high blood pressure is obviously no good as is, but if you have tinnitus, high blood pressure can make things worse. Caffeine causes a slight temporary hypertension and it causes your heart to start pumping overtime. At any rate, high blood pressure has been shown to make tinnitus symptoms worse.
Caffeine and high blood pressure might not be the initial cause of your tinnitus, but they can make things a lot worse for you. The pressure on your arteries and veins caused by the high blood pressure can put pressure on your auditory nerves. This, combined with an irregular blood flow, which caffeine often causes after consumption, can make those symptoms worse. Therefore, in the morning, you might want to start drinking decaf coffee, and when it comes to soda, looks for options that are free of caffeine.
Caffeine and Bad Circulation
What is interesting is that caffeine, while causing high blood pressure, also has the effect of reducing circulation. Many people who suffer from migraines will drink strong coffee because it serves to constrict the blood vessels in the brain. However, when it comes to your ears, auditory nerves, and your tinnitus symptoms, this can actually make things worse.
The physical constriction of the blood vessels that are linked with your ears, as well as the lack of blood and oxygen flowing to the important auditory nerves, has the effect of making tinnitus symptoms worse. Of course, poor circulation is not good no matter which way you put it, so quitting coffee or caffeinated beverages might just be the best option you have.
Caffeine and Anxiety
Something else that has been widely debated is whether or not anxiety can cause tinnitus symptoms to appear, or at least to make existing ones worse. There is a lot of evidence to show that there is a definite link between the two. However, mental disorders and afflictions are impossible to quantify, therefore making it difficult to find the exact link.
Coffee and caffeine in general are shown to cause anxiety and other such things. People who have stress and anxiety know the feeling when their heart starts beating and they start sweating – it’s an anxiety attack. If you consume a lot of caffeine, your body also gets hot, starts sweating, and your heart starts pumping. Drinking a strong coffee is almost like a simulated anxiety attack.
No matter what the case, if you are already feeling anxious, all of that caffeine is not going to help in the least. Now, throw into the mix the fact that anxiety can worsen tinnitus, plus the fact that high blood pressure does the same, and caffeine becomes one of the worst things you can consume when it comes to your tinnitus.
Caffeine Withdrawal and Tinnitus
What is also interesting is that it has been noted that caffeine withdrawal can also cause the acute worsening of tinnitus symptoms. It is kind of weird to think that a lack of caffeine can cause the symptoms to worsen, but this is only so for people who were also used to consuming a lot of it. Many people do not think of their morning cup of coffee or constant soda drinking as a caffeine addiction, but that is exactly what it is. We are not going to get into the exact science of it here, but the fact of the matter is that it is an addiction.
If you have been drinking coffee in the morning for a prolonged period of time and quit suddenly, chances are you will go into withdrawal and your symptoms will get worse. The trick is to abstain from giving in to your caffeine addiction. While it might seem like it makes things better, the relief from the withdrawal is only temporary. However, if you quit caffeine completely, the positive effect it will have in terms of your tinnitus symptoms will be much better.
The bottom line here is that caffeine is not good for your tinnitus symptoms, no matter which way you put it. You will want to seriously consider giving up that morning coffee or tea, or at least consider replacing it with a decaffeinated alternative. The same goes for soda (soda also contains a lot of sodium and sugar, both of which are also not good for tinnitus control).