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

Over the last several decades the public perception of cannabinoids and marijuana has transformed significantly. Many states have legalized the use of marijuana, THC, or cannabinoid products for medicinal reasons. Substantially fewer states have legalized pot for recreational purposes, but even that would have been unimaginable even just ten or fifteen years ago.

Any compounds produced by the cannabis plant (the marijuana plant, essentially) are known as cannabinoids. Despite their recent legalization (in some states), we’re still learning new things about cannabinoids. It’s a common idea that cannabinoid compounds have widespread healing qualities. There have been contradictory studies about cannabinoids and tinnitus but research suggests there might also be negative effects like a strong link between cannabinoid use and the development of tinnitus symptoms.

Various forms of cannabinoids

Today, cannabinoids can be used in many forms. It’s not only pot or weed or whatever name you want to put on it. Other forms can include topical spreads, edibles, inhaled vapors, pills, and more.

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 above 0.3%. So it’s important to be careful with the use of cannabinoids.

The issue is that we don’t yet know much about some of the long-term side effects or complications of cannabinoid use. A great example is some new research into how your hearing is impacted by cannabinoid use.

Research linking hearing to cannabinoids

Whatever you want to call it, cannabinoids have long been connected with improving a wide range of medical disorders. According to anecdotal evidence vertigo, nausea, and seizures are just a few of the conditions that cannabinoids can benefit. So the researchers wondered if cannabinoids could help manage tinnitus, too.

But what they discovered was that tinnitus symptoms can actually be activated by the use of cannabinoids. According to the research, more than 20% of study participants who used cannabinoid products documented hearing a ringing in their ears. And that’s in individuals who had never experienced tinnitus before. Furthermore, marijuana users were 20-times more likely to describe experiencing tinnitus symptoms within 24 hours of consumption.

Further investigation indicated that marijuana use may exacerbate ear-ringing symptoms in those who already suffer from tinnitus. So, it would appear, from this persuasive evidence, that the link between cannabinoids and tinnitus isn’t a beneficial one.

It should be noted that smoking has also been linked with tinnitus and the research was unclear on how participants were using cannabinoids.

Causes of tinnitus are unclear

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

Research, undoubtedly, will continue. Cannabinoids today are available in so many selections and forms that understanding the fundamental connection between these substances and tinnitus might help people make better choices.

Beware the miracle cure

There has undeniably been no lack of marketing publicity surrounding cannabinoids in recent years. To some extent, that’s due to changing attitudes associated with cannabinoids themselves (this also shows a growing wish to get away from opioid use). But this new research makes clear that cannabinoids can and do produce some negative effects, particularly if you’re concerned about your hearing.

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

But this research undeniably indicates a powerful link between tinnitus and cannabinoids. So no matter how many ads for CBD oil you see, you should avoid cannabinoids if you’re worried about tinnitus. It’s not completely clear what the connection between tinnitus and cannabinoids so exercise some caution.

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References

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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