Do you find yourself dealing with constant ringing in your ears? Do you feel unrested even after a full night’s sleep? If you’re dealing with tinnitus and sleep apnea, you might be wondering if these two conditions are related.
If your tinnitus makes it difficult for you to get a good night’s sleep, you might want to look into CPAP therapy. Most commonly used to treat sleep apnea, this treatment can resolve both tinnitus and sleep apnea problems simultaneously. ApneaMed is here to walk you through the connection between tinnitus and sleep apnea and help improve your sleep.
What Is Tinnitus?
Tinnitus is often related to hearing loss and causes an individual to hear a constant ringing in their ears. The noise is more noticeable in environments with low background sounds. While ringing is the most common sound heard by someone with tinnitus, they might also experience buzzing, whistling, or other similar sounds. Depending on the severity of their tinnitus, they might always hear the ringing, or it might come and go.
What Is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
Sleep apnea is a condition that causes you to stop breathing throughout the night. This cessation in breathing is quick and often accompanied by gasping for air, coughing, or snoring. Sleep apnea is caused by the soft tissues of the throat collapsing, blocking the airway, and forcing you to stop breathing. Because you may stop breathing multiple times throughout the night, you may feel extremely unrested in the morning even with no recollection of the cessations happening.
The Connection Between Tinnitus and Sleep Apnea
Now that you understand what tinnitus and sleep apnea are, you might be wondering what the connection is between these two conditions. A recent study looking at sleep disturbances associated with tinnitus found that 69% of patients experienced poor sleep quality. The researchers concluded that for the tinnitus patients to sleep better throughout the night, they needed to reduce the tinnitus’s intensity.
But that isn’t the only link between sleep apnea and tinnitus. It’s believed that obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) could be a cause of tinnitus. Those with OSA often snore very loudly. Frequent snoring at high frequencies can cause noise-related hearing loss, which can result in tinnitus.
These two conditions can impact a person’s quality of sleep, making it hard for them to go about their daily life. The constant exhaustion negatively impacts all aspects of their life — from relationships to career.
How to Treat Tinnitus and Sleep Apnea?
If sleep apnea and tinnitus make it difficult for you to get a sound night’s sleep, CPAP therapy can help. Commonly used to treat sleep apnea, CPAP therapy can also minimize tinnitus because of your body’s improved blood oxygen levels. As these levels improve, there is a reduction of pressure on your ears, which simultaneously alleviates tinnitus symptoms.
Testing and Treatment for Obstructive Sleep Apnea
If you suspect you have tinnitus and obstructive sleep apnea, you’ll need to undergo a sleep assessment to confirm the diagnosis.
With ApneaMed’s home sleep study, you can self-administer the sleep apnea test from the comfort of your home. While you sleep, a device will monitor and record your blood oxygen levels, blood oxygen saturation, breathing, and heart rates.
Following your test, one of ApneaMed’s board-certified sleep physicians will review the results and determine which treatment you’re best suited for, such as CPAP therapy.
If you have any questions about ApneaMed’s at-home sleep apnea test or our sleep apnea treatment equipment, contact our team to