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

Over the past several decades the public opinion about cannabinoids and marijuana has changed significantly. Many states have legalized the use of marijuana, THC, or cannabinoid products for medicinal purposes. The idea that some states (fewer) even allow the recreational use of pot would have been unimaginable 10 years ago.

Any substances derived from the cannabis plant (the marijuana plant, essentially) are known as cannabinoids. And we’re still learning new things about cannabis in spite of the fact that it’s recently been legalized in several states. We often think of these specific compounds as having universal healing qualities. But research suggests a strong connection between the use of cannabinoids and tinnitus symptoms but there are also contradictory studies.

Cannabinoids come in various forms

There are many forms of cannabinoids that can be used presently. Whatever name you want to give it, pot or weed is not the only form. These days, THC and cannabinoids are available in the form of a pill, as topical spreads, as inhaled mists, and others.

Any of these forms that contain a THC level above 0.3% are technically still federally illegal and the available forms will differ by state. That’s why many individuals tend to be quite careful about cannabinoids.

The long-term complications and side effects of cannabinoid use are not well understood and that’s the issue. Some new research into how cannabinoids impact your hearing are perfect examples.

Studies linking hearing to cannabinoids

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

But what they found 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 people who had never experienced tinnitus before. What’s more, marijuana users were 20-times more likely to report experiencing tinnitus symptoms within 24 hours of consumption.

Further research indicated that marijuana use may exacerbate ear-ringing symptoms in people who already suffer from tinnitus. So, it would seem, from this persuasive evidence, that the link between tinnitus and cannabinoids is not a beneficial one.

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

Unclear causes of tinnitus

Just because this link has been found doesn’t automatically mean the underlying causes are all that well understood. That cannabinoids can have an influence on the middle ear and on tinnitus is rather obvious. But what’s causing that impact is far less clear.

There’s bound to be more research. Cannabinoids today are available in so many varieties and types that understanding the root link between these substances and tinnitus could help people make smarter choices.

Beware the miracle cure

Recently, there has been plenty of marketing hype surrounding cannabinoids. That’s partly because attitudes associated with cannabinoids are quickly changing (and, to some extent, is also a reflection of a desire to move away from opioids). But this new research clearly demonstrates that cannabinoids can and do create some negative effects, particularly if you’re concerned about your hearing.

You’ll never be able to avoid all of the cannabinoid enthusiasts and evangelists in the world–the advertising for cannabinoids has been especially aggressive lately.

But this research undeniably indicates a powerful link between tinnitus and cannabinoids. So regardless of how many ads for CBD oil you see, you should avoid cannabinoids if you’re worried about tinnitus. It’s not exactly clear what the link between tinnitus and cannabinoids so exercise some caution.

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