Go Ad-Free
logoThe People's Perspective on Medicine

Tinnitus Disturbs Sleep

Q. My wife has a problem with noise in her right ear. The noise is so constant that it affects her ability to sleep. It started several years ago when she was treated for the flu. The doctor prescribed a strong antibiotic and the noise started the same night and has not gone away.

When we spoke with doctors they said this is part of the aging process and nothing can be done. An audiologist suggested putting the radio on between stations to generate “white noise.” It sure would be great if any of your readers told you of a cure.

A. Many things can cause tinnitus (ringing or buzzing in the ears). Exposure to loud noise can damage the tiny hair cells inside the ear and trigger tinnitus. Various medical conditions like high blood pressure and infection can also cause it. Dozens of medications, including aspirin and certain antibiotics can also lead to this problem.

There is no magic bullet to cure ringing in the ears. Some folks benefit from white noise, while others find it annoying. There are “retraining” programs that help some people cope with tinnitus.

Although the FDA has not approved any medications to treat tinnitus, a small study suggested that misoprostol (Cytotec), a drug used to protect the digestive tract from ulcers, reduced symptoms (Otolaryngology—Head & Neck Surgery, May 2004).

Rate this article
0- 0 ratings
About the Author
Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist who has dedicated his career to making drug information understandable to consumers. His best-selling book, The People’s Pharmacy, was published in 1976 and led to a syndicated newspaper column, syndicated public radio show and web site. In 2006, Long Island University awarded him an honorary doctorate as “one of the country's leading drug experts for the consumer.”.
Tired of the ads on our website?

Now you can browse our website completely ad-free for just $5 / month. Stay up to date on breaking health news and support our work without the distraction of advertisements.

Browse our website ad-free
Join over 150,000 Subscribers at The People's Pharmacy

We're empowering you to make wise decisions about your own health, by providing you with essential health information about both medical and alternative treatment options.