The COVID-19 vaccine is both saving lives and playing an essential role in ending the pandemic and getting us back to our normal lives. However, the known and potential side effects are causing some to pause before getting it. It’s important to know what side effects are expected and which are rare. For example, fatigue and body aches are common; tinnitus is not.
We explore the uncommon link between the COVID-19 vaccine and tinnitus below.
The COVID-19 Vaccine & Tinnitus
While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not list tinnitus as a side effect of the vaccine, the U.S. Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) database reports that around 0.95% of patients, or 1,486 people, have reported tinnitus after receiving one of the FDA-approved COVID vaccines.
Interestingly, the British Tinnitus Association has listed tinnitus as a very rare side effect of the vaccine. This is due to the fact that in the U.K., fewer than one in 14,7000 people have reported tinnitus after receiving the vaccine.
So while tinnitus may be considered a rare side effect of the COVID-19 vaccine, there is not enough data to know for sure.
Social Distancing & Tinnitus
Many people who already suffered from tinnitus experienced even worse symptoms during the pandemic. This is likely due to the fact that spending time in quiet environments without distractions, like solo walks around California Crossing Park, makes tinnitus more noticeable.
One study published in November of 2020 examined the impact of the pandemic on people who suffer from tinnitus. They used data from over 3,000 participants from 48 different countries that was gathered by an online survey.
The researchers found that 40% of patients who had tinnitus reported it had become more bothersome during the pandemic. Researchers hypothesize this was likely due to stress and pandemic-related lifestyle changes like social distancing.
Options for Treating Your Tinnitus
While there is no cure for tinnitus, there are treatment options. These include:
- Acoustic therapy.
- Tinnitus retraining therapy.
- Hearing aids.
If you’d like to learn more about the rare link between the COVID-19 vaccine and tinnitus or to seek help for your tinnitus symptoms, call the experts at Total Hearing Care of Dallas today.