Does wintergreen make Tinnitus worse?

Posted by willows @willows, Jun 15 8:50pm

I love wintergreen flavour. However I have been told that oil of wintergreen is something to be avoided if you have tinnitus as it makes tinnitus worse.
Now days a lot of flavoured gum and candy contains artificial flavours. I was wondering if anyone knows whether the wintergreen flavour comes from actual oil of wintergreen or an artificial replacement and if so whether it would also be toxic.

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Hello @willows

As I've dealt with tinnitus for a number of years I was intrigued by your post. I've never heard about the connection between wintergreen oil and tinnitus. I did some research and did find this article on WebMD. Here is the link, https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-783/wintergreen.
Please read the article. It does state that, "Wintergreen oil is POSSIBLY UNSAFE to take by mouth. Taking wintergreen oil can cause ringing in the ears, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, stomach pain, and confusion. "

I would encourage you to read information from The American Tinnitus Association. Here is a link to their website, https://www.ata.org/understanding-facts.

Also, Mayo Clinic has some reliable information about tinnitus, here is a link to that information, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/tinnitus/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20350162.

Willows, have you personally experienced worsening tinnitus when you have had wintergreen flavored food items or wintergreen oil? How often do you consume these products?

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Thank you hopeful. I will read all the links. Much appreciated.

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@hopeful33250

Hello @willows

As I've dealt with tinnitus for a number of years I was intrigued by your post. I've never heard about the connection between wintergreen oil and tinnitus. I did some research and did find this article on WebMD. Here is the link, https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-783/wintergreen.
Please read the article. It does state that, "Wintergreen oil is POSSIBLY UNSAFE to take by mouth. Taking wintergreen oil can cause ringing in the ears, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, stomach pain, and confusion. "

I would encourage you to read information from The American Tinnitus Association. Here is a link to their website, https://www.ata.org/understanding-facts.

Also, Mayo Clinic has some reliable information about tinnitus, here is a link to that information, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/tinnitus/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20350162.

Willows, have you personally experienced worsening tinnitus when you have had wintergreen flavored food items or wintergreen oil? How often do you consume these products?

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In answer to your question, I don’t consume wintergreen. I try to stay away from toothpaste, mouth wash, candies, breath mints or gum that is flavoured with wintergreen. Also Ben Gay ointment, a rub for muscle aches.

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@willows

In answer to your question, I don’t consume wintergreen. I try to stay away from toothpaste, mouth wash, candies, breath mints or gum that is flavoured with wintergreen. Also Ben Gay ointment, a rub for muscle aches.

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@willows,

Have you found anything that helps your tinnitus or anything that worsens it?

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@hopeful33250

@willows,

Have you found anything that helps your tinnitus or anything that worsens it?

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Hard to say if anything worsens it because tinnitus is prone to variations not only in the sounds heard (hissing, roaring, screeching, rumbling, voices in the distance, uninvited music, thumping) but also in the intensity of the sounds and the combination of different sounds at the same time. They happen spontaneously and what you think might aggravate your tinnitus one day does not the next day. So who knows. I do not find any difference whether I take caffeine, salt, or a small amount of alcohol like a glass of wine. Most high blood pressure can affect tinnitus, particularly loop diuretics. But in most cases if they are listed at all as aggravating tinnitus it is usually considered a « rare » side effect, with the exception of loop diuretics. As to the other part of your question does anything help, I find pregabalin with amitriptyline may help for a few hours. Apart from that I come up with a blank. Just to let you know that I have never tried so called miracle cures. The most helpful thing for me is to listen to nature sounds through my ear buds at a comfortable volume.

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Tinnitus can be truly maddening. I developed it a decade ago, concurrent with some hearing loss of the "upper register" high-pitched sounds. I sail a lot in the Caribbean and think that the loud diesel engines used to recharge batteries and to power generator and air condition the cabin at night, were the cause since, ironically, I also have acute hearing sensitivity. I've learned to ignore the tinnitus by and large but would be first in line for a cure if one is ever found.

The crazy thing about it is that one can be deaf and still have it. Severing the audio nerve won't stop it either, according to my ENT. I think of tinnitus as similar to phantom pain wherein the brain is trying to hear what the ears cannot, similar to the brain sensing pain in a missing limb. The latter can be "cured" with mirror therapy so I keep hoping an analogous brain-retraining is developed for tinnitus.

What helped me come to terms with is to consider that it is, in an odd sense, proof that my brain is trying to do its job and that tinnitus isn't hurting me at least.

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@callalloo

Tinnitus can be truly maddening. I developed it a decade ago, concurrent with some hearing loss of the "upper register" high-pitched sounds. I sail a lot in the Caribbean and think that the loud diesel engines used to recharge batteries and to power generator and air condition the cabin at night, were the cause since, ironically, I also have acute hearing sensitivity. I've learned to ignore the tinnitus by and large but would be first in line for a cure if one is ever found.

The crazy thing about it is that one can be deaf and still have it. Severing the audio nerve won't stop it either, according to my ENT. I think of tinnitus as similar to phantom pain wherein the brain is trying to hear what the ears cannot, similar to the brain sensing pain in a missing limb. The latter can be "cured" with mirror therapy so I keep hoping an analogous brain-retraining is developed for tinnitus.

What helped me come to terms with is to consider that it is, in an odd sense, proof that my brain is trying to do its job and that tinnitus isn't hurting me at least.

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Acute hearing sensitivity called recruitment or hyperacusis often accompanies tinnitus. I have that as well. I also have hearing loss which tends to make tinnitus louder since the less noise you hear, the more tinnitus you hear. One thing that helps me with noise flying for instance is to use the Bose noise cancellation headphones. I am very particular about comfort and I can wear these and sleep comfortably on my back. I add nature sounds and plug them to my Walkman on the night table. The only thing was getting used to sleeping on my back and that took a week or so. I put a pillow under my knees as recommended by my physiotherapist. The noise cancellation headphones, if you used them, would protect your ears from noises on the boat.

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@willows

Acute hearing sensitivity called recruitment or hyperacusis often accompanies tinnitus. I have that as well. I also have hearing loss which tends to make tinnitus louder since the less noise you hear, the more tinnitus you hear. One thing that helps me with noise flying for instance is to use the Bose noise cancellation headphones. I am very particular about comfort and I can wear these and sleep comfortably on my back. I add nature sounds and plug them to my Walkman on the night table. The only thing was getting used to sleeping on my back and that took a week or so. I put a pillow under my knees as recommended by my physiotherapist. The noise cancellation headphones, if you used them, would protect your ears from noises on the boat.

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I'll try them, thanks. I've often wondered about them as going to a gym, and even wearing the best silicon earplugs, is way too loud for my ears. And half the people who work in gyms are hearing challenged (from working in gyms?) so the music sounds normal to them. I do sleep with soft white noise, but did that long before tinnitus. I was always protective about my hearing so the irony of losing the very high-pitched sounds that always hurt my ears is…well, an irony. I've wondered if there's a cause and effect in there though.

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