Can Essential Oils Cure Hearing Loss or Tinnitus?

Can Essential Oils Cure Hearing Loss or Tinnitus?

In Hearing Loss by Dr. Robert Hooper Au.D.

In short, the answer is no. When it comes to hearing loss, hearing aids are the best form of treatment.

Western medicine continues to advance and find solutions for ailments that we never imagined we would find. Indeed, there are some instances where alternative medicine can help reduce symptoms of certain conditions, particularly for those who hope to avoid using pharmaceuticals or surgery, which often have negative side effects. 

Alternative medicines are medical therapies that are not regarded by Western medicine such as herbalism, homeopathy, acupuncture and aromatherapy. Many of these practices, despite not being recognized as valid, have been used for centuries to cure ailments. Aromatherapy first originated in 1937 by French chemist Rene-Maurice Gattefosse as the practice of healing with the use of essential oils. It is claimed that aromatherapy can cure many ailments including hearing loss. 

Regardless of what anecdotal evidence exists, as a professional hearing health service, we can only endorse the benefits of treating hearing aids with hearing loss.

What are essential oils?

Essential oils are derived from plants through processes such as distillation using steam or mechanical methods, such as cold pressing. Any synthetic method of creating scent is not considered an essential oil. The essence of the smell is combined with carrier oil in order to be applied on the body or with an essential oil diffuser, which slowly carries the scent using tiny micro-droplets of water vapor.

Essential oils inhaled through the nose or diluted and applied to the skin. When you smell the scent of essential oils they supposedly simulate your limbic system, which is the portion of your brain responsible for stimulating emotions, smells and long term memory.  This is why smell will often bring back a distant memory like it was yesterday. 

The limbic system also plays an important part in organizing unconscious functions such as breath, heart rate and blood pressure. Because of this cognitive connection proponents of essential oils believe that different scents can actually help control and reduce symptoms throughout the body. 

Stress and anxiety

It is projected that 43% of people who suffer from chronic stress use alternative therapies to help control their symptoms. Specifically, studies on the success of aromatherapy for controlling stress and anxiety are generally positive though researchers struggle to find conclusive results. Essential oils most used to reduce stress include lavender, rose, ylang ylang, bergamot and chamomile.

Sleep and insomnia

When you can reduce the level of stress in your life it makes it easier to get a good night’s rest and be alert during your day. Specific studies around lavender as an essential oil has been proven to improve the quality of sleep after childbirth, and even with patients dealing with heart disease. 

Headaches and migraines

There are many practices using essential oils to relieve headaches and migraines including the Turkish tradition of using a mixture of chamomile with sesame oil to relieve head pain. Other essential oils including peppermint oil, and lavender have been found to successfully relieve the symptoms of migraines and headaches. 

Treating Hearing Loss with Hearing Aids

While many proponents of essential oils make claims about these healing properties, Western medicine has yet to confirm the validity of any of these remedies. 

Similar claims around the treatment of vertigo, tinnitus and ear infections using essential oils has also not been confirmed by the FDA or Western medicine in general.

If you are struggling with hearing loss, the best solution is to get a hearing test and be fitted for hearing aids to meet your specific hearing needs. Contact us today to explore your options and find the best treatment for your hearing issues!