Tinnitus is often most debilitating at night when the quiet peace of the evening is replaced by the buzzing, hissing, or ringing between your ears. Here are a few things you can do to get a better night's sleep, and in doing so, make your next day brighter. If you have any other ideas please share them.
1. Prepare for bed consistently night to night: When you brain recognizes the series of events leading up to bedtime it's more likely to kick in its night-time shut down sequence itself.
2. Pick up your pen and paper: Instead of thinking of all that you have to do the next day while tossing and turning in bed, spend a good ten to fifteen minutes writing everything down that comes to mind. When you've cleared your mind of the next days "to do" list, your brain will be more likely to relax.
3. Keep it cool and dark: People sleep more soundly when they're cool, and melatonin (created by your body to get to sleep) is more readily produced in the dark.
4. Relax your body: Progressive relaxation helps the body to unwind and reduces tossing and turning. Tense up your toes and hold for five to ten seconds. Then relax and move on to your legs. Move up until you've tensed up your face. Then tense up your entire body and relax. It really feels good.
5. Engaging your ears, or not: Some enjoy background noise such as a CD filled with nature sounds, others prefer music. Two tricks here. First, if you listen to music make sure there aren't any words. They may engage your brain and bring you back to life just as you were falling off. Second, if you like the quiet, don't be afraid of hearing your tinnitus. If you give it the power to keep you awake, it will take it. Instead, you can hear it without reacting to it. Imagine that it's the hum of an old generator on a secluded tropical beach, the waves are lapping in the background as the breeze drifts past your face...zzzZZZZ What's worked best for you?