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How To Use CBD Hemp Oil For Tinnitus

Is cannabidiol (CBD) hemp oil for tinnitus a viable remedy? The short answer is that we don't know yet. Scientific data on the topic is sparse and inconclusive, and a lot more research is needed. That doesn't mean CBD is useless against tinnitus, however.

So read on to learn what current research says about cannabinoids for this condition, and also how some people have benefited from using CBD hemp oil for tinnitus.

Is CBD hemp oil for tinnitus a viable remedy?

What Exactly Is Tinnitus?

An article originally published in theActa Medica Mediterranea journal for internists and physicians defines tinnitus as an auditory symptom characterized by an abnormal noise perceived in one or both ears or in the head. This noise is present even in the absence of external sound, and it can be very debilitating. Its causes are largely unknown, but at least one hypothesis is the reason the use of cannabinoids is considered. [1]

It is also necessary to point out here that tinnitus and its causes seem to be highly individualized. This could mean that literally, each case is different, and in experimenting with CBD, tinnitus may just become a thing of the past for some people.

Research Supporting the Efficacy of CBD Hemp Oil for Tinnitus

In a review conducted in 2014 at the University of Otago Medical School, New Zealand, the authors established a link between CBD, tinnitus, and epilepsy. In their own words:

"One hypothesis suggests that tinnitus is a form of sensory epilepsy, arising partly from neuronal hyperactivity in auditory regions of the brain, such as the cochlear nucleus and inferior colliculus. Although there is currently no effective drug treatment for tinnitus, anti-epileptic drugs are used in some cases as a potential treatment option. There is increasing evidence to suggest that cannabinoid drugs, i.e. cannabinoid receptor agonists, can also have anti-epileptic effects, at least in some cases and in some parts of the brain." [2]

RELATED: Proven Again: CBD Reduces Seizures in Rare Epilepsy

To paraphrase in layman's English:

  • The regions in the brain involved in a specific form of epilepsy are also involved in tinnitus.
  • Therefore, some anti-epileptic drugs do work for tinnitus.
  • CBD is a confirmed anti-epileptic treatment—ergo, it may help with tinnitus in some cases.

The regions in the brain involved in a specific form of epilepsy are also involved in tinnitus.

This theory is supported by the fact that the mentioned part of the brain involved in tinnitus and some forms of epilepsy (the cochlear nucleus close to the brain stem) contains functional CB1 receptors. CB1 receptors are associated with both CBD and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC—another cannabinoid) activity.

Yet the authors conclude that the practical effects of cannabinoids for the treatment of tinnitus are still unclear. As said, most of these are hypotheses and are based on conjecture rather than hard science.

In fact, other research shows that CBD, together with THC, may even worsen tinnitus in some cases.

Research Refuting the Efficacy of CBD Hemp Oil for Tinnitus

The studies pointing in the opposite direction are preliminary, meaning they were not tested on human subjects.

In a 2015 animal study, also conducted in New Zealand, one group of rats was subjected to acoustic trauma that induced tinnitus. After treatment with equal doses of CBD and THC, it was shown that the cannabinoid treatment actuallypromoted the development of tinnitus in the rats with pre-existing hearing damage. [3]

The previously mentioned review from the University of Otago Medical School also speculated that cannabinoid involvement in the CB1 receptors located in the dorsal cochlear nucleus has the potential to exacerbate tinnitus, instead of relieving it. They conclude that  "it is very unclear whether cannabinoid drugs that activate the CB1 receptor would make tinnitus worse or better." [2]

However, CBD as such doesn't show a high affinity with CB1 receptors. It is involved in CB1 signaling only (as opposed to activation via direct binding), and this may be the reason some people feel remarkable relief after using CBD hemp oil for tinnitus.

Some people feel remarkable relief after using CBD hemp oil for tinnitus.

Anecdotal Evidence—CBD Hemp Oil for Tinnitus is Successful

One poster on the Tinnitustalk.com forum related that he found any cannabis product with high THC content to exacerbate his high-pitch tinnitus. This included smoking high-THC weed.

However, this all changed by chance, when he took CBD hemp oil drops originally meant for his mom's insomnia.

"I took 2 drops of 4% CBD oil and within 5 minutes, SILENCE! My high pitch noise was gone! ...for the first time since 2012, complete silence. You can imagine my surprise and joy! I really didn't expect that to happen."

What's more—the results remained. According to him, he could still hear a low-pitch noise, but over time, this reduced to less than when the tinnitus started as a result of an injury. [4]

Yet another user, Glenn, found remarkable results after taking CBD oil. Glenn suffers from Meniere's disease, which is an auditory illness that can eventually lead to a complete hearing loss. One of its symptoms is tinnitus.

Glenn feels that cannabidiol doesn't directly affect the Meniere's disease or the tinnitus, but indirectly..." it’s a Godsend because it reduces my anxiety and stress more than anything else I’ve ever tried by far. And when my stress and anxiety levels go down, my tinnitus is so much quieter and my Meniere’s symptoms improve." [5] 

This is encouraging, and anecdotes like these should ideally prompt more clinical research into CBD hemp oil for tinnitus.

RELATED: CBD Oil Effects Declared Safe by World Health Organization

Cannabidiol has been declared safe for use and has many other benefits besides ameliorating anxiety symptoms, and possibly tinnitus. It has been shown to exert positive effects on the following and more:

  • Insomnia
  • Depression
  • PTSD
  • Chronic pain
  • Seizures and epilepsy
  • Inflammatory diseases
  • Substance abuse
  • Anorexia
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Muscle spasms

RELATED: The Therapeutic Benefits of Cannabidiol

There is ample reason, therefore, to at least experiment with CBD hemp oil for tinnitus. That said, never replace prescription medicine for any disease or illness without the consent of your doctor.



  1. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/309661582_Role_of_cannabinoids_in_the_treatment_of_tinnitus
  2. http://www.jscholaronline.org/articles/JPDM/Cannabis-Cannabinoids-and-Tinnitus.pdf
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4364172/
  4. https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/already-6-hours-tinnitus-free-with-cbd-oil.11281/
  5. https://www.mindovermenieres.com/cbd-tinnitus-menieres-disease/

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