Caffeine may reduce women’s tinnitus risk

Women who consume higher amounts of caffeine may have a lower risk of developing tinnitus — a steady ringing in the ear — than women who consume less, according to a new study by a Harvard School of Health (HSPH) researcher and colleagues. Most of the 65,000 women in the 18-year study got their caffeine from coffee; those who consumed the amount of caffeine found in about one-and-a-half cups of coffee each day were 15% more likely to develop tinnitus than women who drank about 4-6 daily cups of coffee.

The study was published in the August issue of the American Journal of Medicine.

While it is unclear why more caffeine may reduce tinnitus risk, study senior author Gary Curhan, professor in the Department of Epidemiology at HSPH and a physician-researcher at Brigham and Women’s Hospital said, “We know that caffeine stimulates the central nervous system, and previous research has demonstrated that caffeine has a direct effect on the inner ear.” He was quoted in an August 8, 2014 article in U.S. News and World Report.

Read study abstract: A Prospective Study of Caffeine Intake and Risk of Incident Tinnitus

Read U.S. News and World Report article: Coffee May Keep Your Ears From Ringing