The Connection Between Tinnitus and Cannabinoids

Researcher examining leaves of cannabinoids that have been linked to tinnitus.

Public opinion surrounding marijuana and cannabinoids has changed significantly over the past several decades. Cannabinoids, marijuana, and THC products are now legal for medical usage in many states. Far fewer states have legalized marijuana for recreational purposes, but even that would have been unimaginable even just ten or fifteen years ago.

Any compounds derived from the cannabis plant (the marijuana plant, essentially) are known as cannabinoids. Despite their recent legalization (in some states), we’re still discovering new things about cannabinoids. It’s a common belief that cannabinoid compounds have widespread healing attributes. But research suggests a strong connection between the use of cannabinoids and tinnitus symptoms but there are also conflicting studies.

Cannabinoids come in many forms

At present, cannabinoids can be consumed in lots of varieties. Whatever name you want to give it, pot or weed isn’t the only form. These days, THC and cannabinoids are available in the form of a pill, as topical spreads, as inhaled mists, and others.

The forms of cannabinoids available will differ state by state, and most of those forms are still actually federally illegal if the amount of THC is over 0.3%. That’s why many individuals tend to be rather cautious about cannabinoids.

The issue is that we don’t yet know very much about some of the long-term side effects or complications of cannabinoid use. Some new studies into how cannabinoids affect your hearing are prime examples.

Studies linking hearing to cannabinoids

Whatever you want to call it, cannabinoids have long been associated with improving a wide variety of medical disorders. Seizures, vertigo, nausea, and more seem to be improved with cannabinoids, according to anecdotally available evidence. So the researchers wondered if cannabinoids could help treat tinnitus, too.

Turns out, cannabinoids may actually cause tinnitus. Ringing in the ears was documented, according to the study, by 20% of the participants who used cannabinoids. And tinnitus was never previously experienced by those participants. Furthermore, marijuana users were 20-times more likely to report experiencing tinnitus symptoms within 24 hours of consumption.

And for individuals who already cope with ringing in the ears, using marijuana could actually exacerbate the symptoms. So, it would appear, from this persuasive research, that the relationship between cannabinoids and tinnitus is not a beneficial one.

The research isn’t clear as to how the cannabinoids were used but it should be mentioned that smoking has also been linked to tinnitus symptoms.

Unclear causes of tinnitus

Just because this connection has been found doesn’t necessarily mean the root causes are all that well known. That cannabinoids can have an influence on the middle ear and on tinnitus is fairly obvious. But what’s causing that impact is a lot less evident.

Research, undoubtedly, will continue. Individuals will be in a better position to make better choices if we can make progress in comprehending the link between the many forms of cannabinoids and tinnitus.

Don’t fall for miracle cures

There has definitely been no scarcity of marketing hype surrounding cannabinoids recently. That’s partly because perceptions associated with cannabinoids are swiftly changing (this also shows a growing wish to get away from opioid use). But this new research makes clear that cannabinoids can and do create some negative effects, particularly if you’re concerned about your hearing.

Lately, there’s been aggressive advertising about cannabinoids and you’ll never escape all of the cannabinoid devotees.

But this research certainly suggests a strong link between tinnitus and cannabinoids. So if you have tinnitus–or if you’re concerned about tinnitus–it might be worth avoiding cannabinoids if you can, no matter how many adverts for CBD oil you may come across. It’s not exactly clear what the link between tinnitus and cannabinoids so use some caution.

References

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/lio2.479
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5855477/
https://www.medpagetoday.com/meetingcoverage/aaohnsf/82180

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.

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