Cannabinoids and Tinnitus – What’s the Connection?

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

Over the past several decades the public perception of cannabinoids and marijuana has transformed a lot. Many states have legalized the use of marijuana, THC, or cannabinoid products for medicinal purposes. The concept that some states (fewer) even allow the recreational usage of pot would have been unimaginable 10 years ago.

Cannabinoids are any substances produced by the cannabis plant (basically, the marijuana plant). And we’re still discovering new things about cannabis despite the fact that it’s recently been legalized in a number of states. We frequently view these particular compounds as having universal healing qualities. There have been contradictory studies about cannabinoids and tinnitus but research indicates there might also be negative effects such as a direct link between cannabinoid use and the development of tinnitus symptoms.

Many forms of cannabinoids

There are many forms of cannabinoids that can be utilized today. It isn’t only pot or weed or whatever name you want to put on it. Other forms can include topical spreads, edibles, pills, inhalable vapors, and others.

The forms of cannabinoids available will differ state by state, and many of those forms are still technically illegal under federal law if the THC content is over 0.3%. So it’s essential to be careful with the use of cannabinoids.

The long-term complications and side effects of cannabinoid use are not well known and that’s the problem. Some new studies into how cannabinoids affect your hearing are perfect examples.

Studies About cannabinoids and hearing

A myriad of conditions are believed to be effectively managed by cannabinoids. Seizures, nausea, vertigo, and more seem to be helped with cannabinoids, according to anecdotally available evidence. So the researchers wondered if cannabinoids could help treat tinnitus, too.

But what they found was that tinnitus symptoms can actually be triggered by the use of cannabinoids. Ringing in the ears was reported, according to the study, by 20% of the participants who used cannabinoids. And tinnitus was never formerly experienced by those participants. What’s more, marijuana users were 20-times more likely to describe experiencing tinnitus symptoms within 24 hours of consumption.

And for people who already cope with ringing in the ears, using marijuana would actually exacerbate the symptoms. Put simply, there’s some pretty persuasive evidence that cannabinoids and tinnitus don’t really work well together.

The research is unclear as to how the cannabinoids were used but it should be mentioned that smoking has also been linked to tinnitus symptoms.

Causes of tinnitus are unclear

Just because this connection has been found doesn’t necessarily mean the underlying causes are all that well understood. It’s fairly clear that cannabinoids have an impact on the middle ear. But what’s producing that impact is far less evident.

There’s bound to be more research. Cannabinoids today are available in so many varieties and forms that understanding the fundamental link between these substances and tinnitus might help people make better choices.

Don’t fall for miracle cures

There has undeniably been no scarcity of marketing hype surrounding cannabinoids recently. To some extent, that’s because of changing perceptions associated with cannabinoids themselves (and, to some extent, is also a reflection of a desire to turn away from opioids). But this new research makes clear that cannabinoids can and do create some negative effects, particularly if you’re concerned about your hearing.

You’ll never be capable of avoiding all of the cannabinoid aficionados and evangelists in the world–the advertising for cannabinoids has been particularly intense lately.

But a strong link between cannabinoids and tinnitus is definitely implied by this research. So regardless of how many ads for CBD oil you see, you should avoid cannabinoids if you’re worried about tinnitus. The connection between cannabinoids and tinnitus symptoms is uncertain at best, so it’s worth exercising a little caution.


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