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Questions Asked by the Tinnitus Community - Answers Provided by Arches President, Barry Keate

Note: Ask Barry is pleased to be able to answer your questions based upon the information we have available. Our answers to inquiries are not substitutes for a physician’s advice nor are they reviewed by a physician. We encourage you to share any suggestions you have received from Ask Barry with your doctor.
Taking Taurine for Tinnitus

Hi Barry,

Does Taurine work for Tinnitus?

James B.

Dear James,

I looked into Taurine as a result of your question. I had not looked at this supplement previously and found that yes, it can be helpful for people with tinnitus, as well as for other conditions such as diabetes, obesity, atherosclerosis and epilepsy, among others.

Taurine is an amino acid the body produces from protein. It is found in meat, fish and dairy products. It is present in abundance in most humans but certain diets, including vegetarian and vegan, may leave a person with a diminished amount.Certain disease states can cause a deficiency of Taurine and aging people are often not able to produce an optimal amount, making supplementation vital.

Taurine plays a vital role in hearing and studies have found in some cases Taurine can reverse the biochemical process behind hearing loss. Much of the damage to hearing occurs not in the mechanical parts of the ear but in the nerve cells that convert sound waves into electrical energy that is sent to the auditory cochlea. These hair cells depend on the flow of calcium ions into and out of the cell. Taurine helps restore and control normal calcium ion flow in auditory nerve cells.

Taurine improves the hearing in animals exposed to ototoxic medications like the antibiotic gentamicin, which is notoriously toxic to hearing. Taurine may also be helpful in quieting tinnitus. Animal studies using a human equivalent dosage of 700 mg to 3.2 grams for several weeks demonstrate near-complete resolution of tinnitus. A small pilot study on humans showed encouraging results with 12% of people responding to Taurine.

Look for a more complete article on Taurine and tinnitus in a future issue of Quiet Times.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Tinnitus Got Worse after COVID

Hi Barry

I contracted COVID on 1/23/21. Symptoms are gone, but my tinnitus has become a real problem. Is there any hope (even anecdotal) that a COVID induced flare-up will subside over time?

I realize there is not much I can do otherwise except stick it out. I’m about 75% thru the Starter Kit of your tinnitus formula. If there are suggestions you have to address the impact on tinnitus from COVID, I’d be interested in your thoughts.

Lee M.

Dear Lee,

The most recent study I am aware of was published March 2021, in the International Journal of Audiology, estimated that almost 15 percent of those with COVID-19 said they had tinnitus, often early in the course of the virus.

Thankfully many people with long COVID do eventually recover and most of them return to normal or near normal. I hope this is the case with your COVID-related tinnitus.

There is new research that shows that melatonin, also reduces the incidence of COVID-19 infection and may be therapeutic for those who already have the disease.

Melatonin has been shown to reduce tinnitus, especially in those with severe tinnitus and difficulty sleeping. There is new research that shows that Melatonin reduces the incidence of COVID-19 infection and may be therapeutic for those who already have the disease.

At the worst, you should sleep better. Start with maybe 5 mg an hour before bed. You can work up to 20 mg if needed, which is what I take every evening.

Hopefully, this will be helpful.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Nutrients for “explosion” in her ear?

Good Morning Barry (I am in Australia).

I just wanted to firstly say how much I enjoy your very informative responses and articles.

I contracted tinnitus last November when awaking one morning with something similar to an explosion in my ear. It was terrifying to say the least. The buzz has lessened slightly but is much worse in the mornings and evenings.

I would like your opinion on some nutrients for the ear I have been offered. They are: colloidal minerals in liquid form; antioxidants – vitamins A,C and E; Ginkgo biloba; grape seed extract; pine bark extract; and circuminoids.

I would be very pleased if you could give your opinion as to whether these would be suitable for tinnitus and provide all the benefits to ease or eradicate the very debilitating noise.

Thank you so much,
Kind regards,
Celestine H.

Dear Celestine,

I’m sorry this has happened to you. Our article on “Sudden Brief Tinnitus” may be of some help.

I don’t personally know about colloidal minerals but the noted MD for natural treatments, Dr. Andrew Weil, wrote “To me these supplements exemplify obnoxious multilevel marketing in the name of natural medicine …and I have not seen convincing evidence of any therapeutic benefit from taking colloidal minerals.”

First, I think you should go in for a general checkup. There are many things that can cause tinnitus and some are medical conditions. Hearing loss is the largest contributor to tinnitus but others, such as diabetes and hypothyroidism, also cause it and treatments for these conditions, (if you have them), can help calm tinnitus, sometimes to a great degree.

Antioxidants generally are great to take for tinnitus. When hearing cells are damaged, they produce large amounts of free radicals. Other than Ginkgo, the ones you mention may not directly reduce tinnitus but Vitamins A, C, and E are all good antioxidants. Grape seed extract, pine bark extract and anti-inflammatory curcuminoids like tumeric are also helpful.

You should add zinc picolinate to your menu. The highest concentration of zinc in the body is found in the cochlea and zinc has demonstrated the ability to reduce tinnitus. Zinc picolinate has the highest bioavailability of all zinc compounds.

Ginkgo biloba is very helpful for tinnitus. It helps in three ways; increased circulation, antioxidant activity, and glutamate antagonism. Glutamate is an excitatory neurotransmitter that is responsible for overexciting the auditory pathway and causing tinnitus. Bilobalide is one of the active ingredients of Ginkgo biloba and helps neutralize glutamate.

Arches Tinnitus Formula contains Ginkgo Max 26/7, our proprietary ginkgo. It has the highest concentration of flavone glycosides, terpene lactones and bilobalide found in any product in the world and is very helpful for reducing tinnitus, especially in those who have hearing loss as the primary cause.

Arches Tinnitus Formula also uses zinc picolinate, and reduced odor garlic as it’s other two main ingredients. You must use it for three months to get the full effect so we recommend the Tinnitus Starter Kit, which contains the recommended three-month supply of the Tinnitus Formula.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Are there allergens in Ginkgo?

Hi Barry,

I just read that Ginkgo has alkylphenols in it, and the article said that people who are highly allergic to poison ivy should avoid taking Ginkgo. Is this true?

Jane L.

Dear Jane,

This is partially true. Ginkgo biloba does contain alkyphenols, the primary one being ginkgolic acid, which is an allergen and “can” produce allergic reactions like poison ivy. However, most reputable manufacturers remove this during the extraction process. The German Commission E standard for ginkgo extracts requires there be less than 5 ppm (parts per million) ginkgolic acid. Some less than reputable manufacturers don’t remove it.

Arches Tinnitus Formula uses our proprietary ginkgo extract Ginkgo Max 26/7, which contains less than 1 ppm ginkgolic acid. This means it is non-detectable. For greater detail you can view our entire Certificate of Analysis.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Tinnitus Formula worked before, but will it work again?


Your products are great. I started using them in 2015 after an episode of Tinnitus and hearing loss. After much research, I found your product. Your personal story is what convinced me to go with your product originally. It worked!

Unfortunately, it worked so well that I stopped using them after much success.

Recently my tinnitus increased like crazy and with more hearing loss. An ENT doctor said my audiogram was the same as in 2015. But I felt it was worse. The doctor shot my ear full of steroids and they gave me steroids orally and my hearing loss has improved 25%.

The tinnitus is out of control and my hearing loss in the severe to profound high frequency level. I am 64. Do you feel your Tinnitus Combo Pack will get me back in line to a degree?

Also, what are your thoughts on the FX 322 therapeutic drug by Frequency Therapeutics? It seems to have promise in helping to a degree with hearing disorders. I will never stop taking your products again. Trust me on that… What is an ear worth? Lol…

Thank you,
George F.

Dear George,

Thank you. I’m very happy our products worked for you so well. They should do the same thing again and relieve the sound and aggravation that goes along with tinnitus… Just give it time to work again.

I looked into FX-322 from Frequency Therapeutics. They propose that their formula will regenerate damaged auditory nerve cells in the ear and improve hearing. It is applied by intratympanic injection. This means it is injected through the eardrum and sits on the cochlea, in the middle ear. In order to keep it from draining out through the Eustachian tube, it must be in a gel form that will stick where it’s placed.

The product is now in Phase 2 trials and, if everything goes right, will enter Phase 3 trials later this year. It will then take another year for the trial, then more time to meet the regulatory hurdles and become available to doctors.

This is pretty exciting and shows there is hope. However, it’s not a slam-dunk. About 90% of drugs, for any condition, do not show improvement in Phase 3 trials and are abandoned. Whether it is effective or not, it shows major progress toward finally treating hearing loss. I’ll await further results and thank you for sending this to me.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Energy Supplements and Tinnitus

Hi Barry,

I am a happy Tinnitus Formula customer. I started taking a Nitric oxide booster/energy supplement (L-Arginine + L-Citruline Malate + beet root powder). I believe I am getting additional energy from taking it. I have a suspicion it is making my tinnitus worse. If you are familiar with that type of product, could it be increasing my tinnitus?

As always thank you for supporting the tinnitus community.

Jim K.

Dear Jim,

I’m happy Arches Tinnitus Formula has been helpful for you with your tinnitus.

The supplements you mention are all good for improving endurance during exercise and should not increase tinnitus. We are all different though and the true test is what your body is telling you. Try stopping them for two weeks then starting again. If your tinnitus goes down, then back up when you restart, you’ll know at least one of the ingredients is causing the increase. You can then isolate the ingredient that is causing the increase.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Melatonin bad for Tinnitus?

Hello Barry,

Is melatonin bad for tinnitus?

Toni M.

Dear Toni,

Melatonin is not bad for tinnitus; in fact it has a positive effect on people with tinnitus who also have a hard time getting to sleep.

Melatonin is a human hormone that is responsible, among other things, for promoting a good night’s sleep. Clinical studies have shown nearly 50% of tinnitus patients with insomnia improved after taking melatonin.

It is also a powerful antioxidant and reduces cochlear damage produced by ototoxic medications. It protects against hearing loss from aminoglycoside antibiotics and chemotherapy drugs that normally cause hearing loss and tinnitus.

Melatonin production is reduced in older people, who may need more. It is also inhibited by light, especially blue light that predominates electronic screens. Blue light is most prevalent in TV screens, laptops, tablets and phones. Sleep experts advise people to turn these devices off at least an hour before bedtime so it doesn’t degrade melatonin produced in the body.

Please read our article  on the benefits of melatonin for people with tinnitus.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Antioxidants for Tinnitus


Was just wondering if antioxidants help reduce tinnitus if a person is already taking Ginkgo? I’ve tried Arches but never took it with an antioxidant.

S.C. from Iowa

Dear SC,

Antioxidants can be helpful in reducing tinnitus. One of the ingredients in our Tinnitus Formula is zinc picolinate, an important antioxidant, shown in clinical studies to be effective in reducing tinnitus. Antioxidants in general will definitely be helpful in preventing further damage to your hearing and increased tinnitus. Furthermore, antioxidants prevent many diseases, including some forms of cancer. They are one of the secrets of longevity.

You cannot take too many antioxidants. Of particular importance to those with tinnitus are Zinc, Vitamins C and E, N-Acetyl-Cysteine (NAC) and Acetyl-L-Carnitine. Please read our article, Antioxidants, Tinnitus and Your Health found in our Tinnitus Library.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

A “Ringing” Sinus Headache

Hi Barry,

My problems are sinus headaches and ringing ears. I’ve been to numerous ENT doctors and still have no relief. I taken every med including steroids with no progress. During the day its tolerable but at night its worse. Especially when laying down. My head feels like its full of fluid and the ringing is unbearable. It wakes me up its so bad.

Rainy and muggy days are worst. Also I snore like there is no tomorrow. I do not have apnea. I had two operations to stop snoring; one for deviated septum and the other was laser surgery. Both failed. I am at my wits end. Do you have any clue as to what I can do?

Paul C.

Dear Paul,

It seems as though part of the problem you’re having may be due to inflammation. This is a complex situation involving many of the processes in the body. Inflammation is the cause of many human diseases and is a subject researchers spend lifetimes working on. This is probably why your doctors tried steroids, which are known to reduce some forms of inflammation. Inflammation is definitely a cause of headache and sinus problems.

Inflammation causes pain as well as a host of degenerative diseases and can have a significant effect on tinnitus.. One very basic principle is that a primary cause is too much saturated fat and not enough unsaturated essential fatty acids, which the body cannot produce. Essential fatty acids are the Omega-3 acids found in fish oil and EPA/DHA. EPA is eicosapentaenoic acid and DHA is docosahexaenoic acid. If there are not enough of these compounds in the diet, saturated fats replace the Essential Fatty Acids in the cells. Supplementing with the right fatty acids suppresses inflammatory prostaglandins, a group of lipids made at sites of tissue damage, and promotes anti-inflammatory prostaglandin E-2.

I also recommend a diet high in fish. Also supplement with fish oil or an EPA/DHA compound. Avoid saturated fats, salt and high glycemic foods such as simple sugars and refined carbohydrates. Please read our article, Omega-3s, Inflammation and Tinnitus: A Fish Story, for more detailed information.

Be very careful about your salt intake. Salt will aggravate tinnitus as well as inflammation.

Also you should use Arches Tinnitus Formulas. While they will not directly address the issue of inflammation, they will help in reducing the tinnitus. Arches Tinnitus Formula® will also increase circulation within the ears and help to reduce the fullness.

I hope this is helpful.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

GABA for tinnitus?

Hi Barry,

I recently heard that GABA supplements can be helpful for tinnitus. Is this true?


Dear Richard,

I believe GABA supplements can help tinnitus. GABA receptors in the brain are inhibitory receptors; they slow down electrical activity. It is well known that people with tinnitus have an elevated level of electrical activity in the auditory cortex. Activating GABA receptors slows this activity. We published an article about research in this area a couple of years ago. The researchers used the prescription medication Neurontin, which is known generically as gabapentin. Gabapentin activates the GABA receptors in much the same way as GABA supplements. It has been used in the past as an anti-seizure medication for people suffering from epilepsy and similar disorders.

Anecdotally, I have heard from several people who have combined GABA supplements with Arches Tinnitus Formula. They tell me the GABA supplements enhance the ability of Arches Tinnitus Formula to reduce tinnitus and calm the mind.

It should be noted that GABA acts much like a prescription tranquilizer, without the addictive properties. If you take enough, it will make you drowsy and slow reaction time. I took 1500 mg twice daily for a couple of weeks. After several days I found myself dozing off at my desk in the middle of the day. People taking GABA should be very careful when driving or operating machinery. GABA is not something that can be used indefinitely; over time, the effect is reduced. However, it can be helpful in the early stages of treatment with Arches Tinnitus Formula.

GABA supplements are available in better health food stores and are fairly inexpensive.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Head Injury and Tinnitus

Dear Barry,

I am looking for information on head-injury related tinnitus. Is there any way to help this ailment? Can any herbs, supplements, or treatments aid in the healing of this particular tinnitus?

Thanking you,

Dear Ashley,

Head trauma is a common cause of tinnitus. There are several mechanisms of action causing the damage. The trauma can damage the auditory cortex in the brain, it can damage the auditory nerve leading from the cochlea or it can damage the fine bones in the middle ear that conduct sound to the cochlea.

The primary therapy for trauma induced tinnitus is the same as for noise induced tinnitus. I recommend Arches Tinnitus Formula, and NAC (N-Acetyl Cysteine), while it can still be found on the  market. Acetyl-L-Carnitine and Alpha Lipoic Acid are also helpful. These supplements can prevent further damage from occurring and will help to heal some of the existing damage.

For short term relief, many people have used GABA supplements. GABA is an inhibitory neurotransmitter that will slow down electrical activity in the brain and reduce tinnitus. It acts somewhat like a mild tranquilizer, so you must be careful when driving or operating machinery. I recommend 500-750 mg twice daily. After one week you can adjust dosage up or down depending on results. GABA can be found online and in health food stores.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

How long until tinnitus relief?… Will Omega-3 help?

Hi Barry,

I have been suffering with tinnitus in my left ear for approximately five months now. I have started watching my salt and sugar intake and am also beginning my third of four bottles of your Tinnitus Formula. I have yet to show much improvement, but I do have some good days. I do have plans to start taking Omega-3 because my left ear seems to be irritated quite a bit.

Do you think there will come a point in time when I will be able to block the tinnitus out of my mind, or is this something that will be there when I go to bed and when I wake up, as it is now? I have an awful time at night because I can’t sleep due to the noise. Any recommendations will be greatly appreciated.

Thank you!
Joyce R.

Dear Joyce,

Thanks for your question. Since you are currently starting the third bottle of Arches Tinnitus Formula, typically it is a little early to see results. ENT doctors tell their patients to use it for at least 100 days (4 bottles) before determining how effective it will be. You have been using it for approximately 50-60 days. Given you have early onset tinnitus, you should notice a difference in the next month. Clinical trials show that early onset tinnitus, within one year of beginning, often have a better outcome than long-standing tinnitus. I hope you get significant relief in the next month or so.

Omega-3 is always a good idea. The typical American diet is way out of balance with the majority of Omega fatty acids consumed being Omega-6. Omega-3 should help reduce any inflammation you may have and hopefully will help the irritation in your ear. You need to take a significant amount and many researchers suggest a minimum of 3 grams per day of combined Omega 3 up to 10 grams per day. Be careful not to take this much if you are using Cod Liver Oil as the Omega 3 source. This has a high amount of Vitamin A on which you can overdose.

Everything you do that improves health will also help reduce tinnitus. Diet is very important, and we have an important article on how diet affects tinnitus. And I totally empathize with your difficulty getting to sleep, but there are certain things you can do that will help. Please read our article on Tinnitus-Induced Insomnia.

“Blocking the tinnitus” is not a term I feel comfortable with. It implies that recovery is a matter of will power, which it’s not, although meditation and mindfulness can be helpful. The ideal situation is where the tinnitus subsides enough that it doesn’t bother you any more. I go to bed and wake up with tinnitus every day but I rarely pay attention to it because it is now greatly reduced. Hopefully you will have the same experience.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Taking too much zinc for Tinnitus?

Hi Barry,

I just ordered my second set of 4 bottles of Arches Tinnitus Formula. Here is my question: Taking 4 capsules per day of your formula provides 30 mg of zinc. I also take 2 calcium capsules per day that contain 10 mg each of zinc so I am now receiving 50 mg per day. The RDA recommended dosage per day is 15 mg. Am I being over ‘zinc-ed’?

Robert H.

Dear Robert,

No, you are not getting too much zinc, but there is a caveat.

The RDA “minimums are the amount necessary to stay healthy. 50 mg of zinc per day is a therapeutic dose for the relief of tinnitus. We initially were going to have 50 mg in the daily dosage of Arches Tinnitus Formula but decided to reduce the amount precisely because of people like you who get zinc from other supplements. 50 mg zinc is not too much. So the caveat is that at this amount you should add small amounts of copper and manganese, as zinc competes with these minerals for absorption.

According to the National Institutes of Health adults may take 40mg daily without extra supplementation. Above this level, zinc should be taken with small amounts of copper and manganese. The general rule is to take 1-2 mg copper and 2-3 mg manganese for every 10 mg of zinc above a 40 mg daily dosage. Therefore, someone taking 50 mg zinc daily should also take 1-2 mg copper and 2-3 mg manganese. Many zinc supplements now add these two minerals.

Basic elemental zinc does not absorb well. Arches Tinnitus Formula uses the most easily absorbed form of zinc,  zinc picolinate.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

How much melatonin for sleep is safe?

Dear Barry,

I have been taking 10 mg of melatonin for several years. However, it has stopped working about five weeks ago due to insomnia from work stress. I’ve done some online research and found that melatonin should only be taken occasionally and that long term use can make your body stop making its own melatonin and they site other warnings.

I just wanted your feedback on the 10 mg dosage, which is considered the maximum and if you can give any advice on how else to treat insomnia since my primary care doctor was only able to prescribe sleeping pills, which I don’t believe in due to the dangers and dependency.

I much appreciate your feedback.
Julio M.

Dear Julio,

You can read lots of scary stories on the internet. Safety Call International, an adverse event and pharmaceutical toxicology lab, has investigated melatonin thoroughly. They produced a positive report on melatonin giving it a thumbs up, stating that up to 20 mg can be taken safely.

There was some erroneous conjecture that taking a melatonin would slow down the body’s production of it. But that assumption has been debunked. What really makes the body stop making melatonin is blue light, like that emitted from TVs and laptops. Laptops especially but also TVs should not be used in the bedroom before sleep. Melatonin is produced in the body when it is dark and blue light makes the body think it’s still daytime.

Melatonin can only do so much and work stress should be handled somehow. Exercise is a great way to reduce stress. I recommend a good exercise routine after work but before dinner. Yoga is a great way to reduce stress and increase GABA levels, which calm the brain.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

How do I protect my tinnitus from harsh medications?

Hi Barry,

I have a sinus infection that hasn’t responded to my usual round of Augmentin, and my physician wants me to start doxycycline or clindamycin, of which both are known to worsen tinnitus.

I’m currently taking NAC 1200 mg twice a day, along with Arches Tinnitus Formula (2 capsules twice a day), but still have a fear of losing more hearing and/or worsening of tinnitus. In fact, my tinnitus level has increased just worrying about this.

Do you think that the NAC and ATF will protect me adequately? Is there anything else that you would add?

The antibiotic regimen will be for 10 days. If my tinnitus does increase while taking the antibiotic, is there a reasonable chance that it would go back down after finishing the antibiotic? This is a major dilemma, as you know for many of us living with this awful malady.

I highly value your wisdom and advice, and appreciate you very much! I always look forward to your answers!

David F.

Hi David,

Thanks for your question. It is very important and prompted me to investigate further.

You are on the right track. NAC and Arches Tinnitus Formula will help protect your hearing from deterioration and worsening tinnitus. It may be all you need but to make sure let’s add some extra protection to it.

Antioxidants are the answer to protecting hearing from ototoxic agents. The more antioxidants the better. I have reviewed a paper from the International Journal of Otolaryngology relevant to antioxidants that protect against ototoxicity. I will give a shortened version and what I recommend.

You should add to your regimen Vitamin C (2,000 mg), L-Methionine (at least 1,000 mg), Alpha Lipoic Acid (1200 – 1500 mg) and Ubiquinol (200 – 300 mg). All of these are found in local health food stores or online and are quite inexpensive except the Ubiquinol. Ubiquinol is the active form of CoEnzyme Q10 (CoQ10) and is a much more absorbable form than regular CoQ10 which uses ubiquinone. I read a clinical trial where investigators stopped cochlear damage in laboratory animals exposed to ototoxic medications using CoQ10. It is a little more expensive than the rest but really worth it.

I would start on this regimen immediately and continue for at least a week or two after the last of the antibiotic is taken. This should really protect your hearing. If your tinnitus does seem worse, it will subside after a while. I have had a couple of run-ins with ototoxic meds and antioxidants have always returned my tinnitus to normal.

I hope all goes well and you clear up the infection.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Bioflavonoids for tinnitus relief?

Hi Barry,

Do bioflavonoids or the product Lipo-flavonoid, help to alleviate tinnitus?

Thank you,
Dave J.

Dear David,

They really don’t. Lipo-Flavonoid is a product developed quite a while ago and its main component is citrus bioflavonoids. These act as antihistamines and were originally designed to treat vertigo caused by Meniere’s disease. It was never meant to treat tinnitus and the only clinical study conducted on Lipo-Flavonoid for tinnitus showed it to be ineffective. However, Lipo-Flavonoid has been marketed to help tinnitus and many doctors started recommending it.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Did Dietary Supplement Worsen my Tinnitus?

Hi Barry,

I have habituated to my tinnitus reasonably well over the past 17 years. In the last two months however, I have experienced a considerable spike in the volume. The only thing that I have been doing differently is that I’m taking a natural supplement that has been very effective in keeping my blood sugar at acceptable levels.

The supplement contains: Calcium,183 mg per tablet; Chromium, 133 mcg per tablet; Berberine (as berberine HCI) 333 mg; Alpha lipoic acid 200 mg; Gymnema sylvestre (leaf) 133 mg. Following directions I am taking three tablets a day. I have done some research, and have found no indication of ototoxicity in any of these ingredients. Do you think it’s safe to continue using this product and at this strength?

Many thanks!
Doug C.

Dear Doug,

Like you, I could not find any direct evidence that the ingredients in your supplement can cause tinnitus. However, Berberine is an isoquinoline alkaloid and is related to quinine. Quinine is known to cause or worsen tinnitus.

The real test for whether this supplement is causing the upswing in your tinnitus is to stop using it for a couple of weeks then start again. If your tinnitus goes down when you discontinue usage then increases when you start again, the supplement is definitely the cause.

We are all sensitive to different things and what holds true for one person may not for another. In my case, I cannot take a single low dose of Ibuprofen without sending my tinnitus through the roof for several hours. Other people don’t react to it this way.

Whatever caused the increase, Arches Tinnitus Formula can help to combat it. The Ginkgo biloba extract found in Arches Tinnitus Formula, Ginkgo Max 26/7, is neuroprotective and aids in preventing ototoxicity.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Lipoflavonoid for Tinnitus?

Hi Barry,

I’m a fairly new customer – three months. I have noticed TV commercials about Lipoflavonoid reducing tinnitus.

Mark P.

Dear Mark,

Despite being advertised on TV, Lipoflavonoid was never designed for tinnitus. It was developed to treat vertigo associated with Meniere’s disease, in which it did show some promise. The only clinical study conducted on Lipoflavonoid and tinnitus showed it to be ineffective. You can look it up online. You will see that the only ingredients are small amounts of B vitamins and lemon bioflavonoid. Arches Tinnitus Stress Formula contains a higher amount of these ingredients than Lipflavonoid does, and those ingredients (in high enough dosages) are helpful to reduce tinnitus-related stress.

Please read the report from on Lipofavonoid. The last sentence of their report reads: “Neither Lipo-flavonoid Plus, nor its main ingredient, have been evaluated in reliable clinical studies for tinnitus or other ear-related conditions.”

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

NAC for tinnitus?

Dear Barry,

I found an article in the Academic Google talking about treating tinnitus and hearing loss using NAC … Could you give your opinion on the subject?

David S.

Dear David,

The dietary supplement, N-acetyl cysteine (NAC) is a powerful anti-oxidant and is an excellent supplement to take for people with tinnitus. Tinnitus researcher Richard Kopke has done a lot of work with this on returning soldiers suffering hearing loss and tinnitus. He found that, if administered within 2-3 days after noise exposure, NAC can prevent a lot of the damage that occurs and reduce the amount of hearing loss. The key to this is it must be administered shortly after exposure.

I don’t believe NAC will do a lot of good for people who have had long-term tinnitus. However, it is a great compound and one I take every day. It will prevent future damage from blast and noise exposure and also from ototoxic drugs. It’s interesting to note that NAC is the treatment of choice in hospitals for treating Tylenol overdose. Tylenol is toxic to the liver and overdose can be deadly. NAC, due to its antioxidant activities, helps prevent the damage.

I recommend taking 1,000 mg twice daily for general protection. It is very inexpensive, found in most health food stores and has no side effects.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Tinnitus and Cholesterol Meds

Dear Barry,

I have been taking statins for my cholesterol. Do you think this is related to tinnitus? I only take this and nothing else. I have suffered with tinnitus for eight months but have been taking this medication for many years. I have tried everything including natural herbs nothing helps.

Pat L.

Dear Pat,

It is quite possible statin drugs have contributed to your tinnitus. Statins destroy Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) which is necessary for the production of energy for all cellular and biological functions in the human body. It has been found that low CoQ10 levels lead to many neurodegenerative diseases, such as tinnitus. It is possible that after years of statin usage your CoQ10 levels have been reduced to the point where tinnitus has set in.

The connection between statin drugs and CoQ10 deficiency is so convincing that in 1989 Merck, the pharmaceutical manufacturer, applied for and received a patent for a combination of statins and CoQ10. Since then, Merck has neither produced this combination nor allowed others to manufacture it. Most doctors are not aware of the connection.

Please read our article on Statin Drugs and Tinnitus: The CoQ10 Connection.

Wishing you quiet times,

Barry Keate

NAC for Tinnitus?

Hi Barry,

I’ve recently had an encounter with tinnitus, and all I do recall is taking ibuprofen and aspirin on night, and I woke up with this loud ring in my ear. I’ve tried everything, and I do have a chemistry background, so I came across the effects of (NAC), regarding tinnitus. What I found impressive is that (NAC) has a negative charge, which makes a good host for the body in order to absorb toxins. I begin taking my first dosage of (NAC) today about 500mg.

So far, I can’t tell much, but it does appear the ringing in my right ear is beginning to change. I would like to know more about the symptoms of tinnitus, and what other remedies are available to help fight against the effects that it brings.

Thank you!
Byron W.

Dear Byron,

NAC (N-Acetyl Cysteine) is very healthy to take for many reasons. It is a powerful anti-oxidant and it helps protect ears from ototoxic medications, of which ibuprofen is one. You cannot take too much as there are no side effects from using it. I have been taking NAC for years and usually recommend 1,000 mg taken in the morning and again in the evening. It works best at prevention of damage to hearing rather than in response to damage but it can still be helpful.

Arches Tinnitus Formula has been scientifically proven to reduce tinnitus for the great majority of those who use it. It is especially helpful for those with hearing loss-induced tinnitus. This can occur from exposure to noise and loud sound over time and also those who have lost hearing due to ototoxic medications.

It can take up to three months to get the full benefit so we recommend Arches Starter Kit, a full three-month supply of four bottles.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

How much Ginkgo will reduce Tinnitus?

Hi Barry,

How much Gingko biloba do I need to take to reduce tinnitus?

Jackie C.

Dear Jackie,

Thank you for your question. I can give you a number for the proper dosage, and will, but you must know quality of the product is at least as important as dosage. Ginkgo biloba is a fairly expensive material, cannot be synthesized, and is frequently adulterated by unscrupulous manufacturers. Adulteration with low quality substitutes is quite common in the industry. Even many products that are not adulterated still do not contain the level of quality ingredients listed on the label.

Consumer Labs has conducted tests for most of the products found in the American marketplace and states that fully 77% of these do not contain the minimal amounts of ginkgo components expected in products that will have beneficial effects. Arches Tinnitus Formula has developed our own high grade Ginkgo biloba that exceeds these standards. We have done this to provide a product that is the most effective for reducing tinnitus in the great majority of people who use it. You cannot purchase a higher quality Ginkgo biloba anywhere in the world. Please see our article on Ginkgo Max 26/7, the trademarked ginkgo we use in Arches Tinnitus Formula.

Provided you take a high quality ginkgo product, the correct dosage is 240 mg taken twice daily for a minimum period of three months. This equates to 2 capsules Arches Tinnitus Formula in the morning and another two capsules in the evening. It takes up to three months for any dietary supplement to fully affect conditions for which they were developed. We recommend Arches Tinnitus Starter Kit, a full three-month supply of four bottles. You can purchase these one at a time but the Starter Kit is significantly discounted from the single bottle price. You will also ensure you don’t run out during the critical three month period.

I hope this is helpful and you can significantly reduce your tinnitus.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Lipo-Flavonoid for Tinnitus?

Hi Barry,

My Neurologist recommended Lipo-Flavonoid when I went to see her about the music I hear with my tinnitus… does that help?

Thank you,
Helen T.

Dear Helen,

I’m sorry but Lipo-Flavonoid will not be helpful. It was originally developed to help with dizziness caused by Meniere’s disease. It consists of low doses of B vitamins and some bioflavonoids that act like an antihistamine, which is why it helps dizziness. Sometime more recently the company decided to market it for tinnitus but clinical studies show it’s not helpful for that. They continue to market it strongly but I have never heard from anyone that it has helped.

I believe what you have in addition to your tinnitus is called Musical Ear Syndrome. This is not dangerous. It usually occurs in people with reduced hearing who do not have a rich sound environment. It is the brain filling up the silence by making its own sound. Many people find it enjoyable. There are a number of ways it can be reduced if it’s bothering you. Please read our article on Musical Ear Syndrome and Tinnitus.

Arches Tinnitus Formula may be helpful for your tinnitus. It has been shown in clinical trials to be effective for most people and is particularly effective for those who have tinnitus due to hearing loss. We have about a 75% to 80% success rate with those patients. It takes time and must be used for three months (four bottles) before you can determine how effective it will be for you. We recommend Arches Starter Kit, a full three-month supply.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Is GABA helpful for Tinnitus?

Hi Barry,

Is the dietary supplement Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) okay to take in capsule form to take for my tinnitus and if so what milligram is acceptable to take? I am on the diabetic diet for months now but still have a lot of brain activity that my neurologist says comes from my multiple sclerosis (MS).

Thank you,
Joan F.

Dear Joan,

Yes, GABA is safe to take for tinnitus and may be helpful. Start at 500 mg twice daily and work up until you begin to feel drowsy, than back off a little. GABA works to calm the mind and opposes glutamate. GABA is a calming neurotransmitter while glutamate is an excitatory neurotransmitter. An overabundance of glutamate is one of the primary causes of tinnitus and other neurological conditions.

There is some discussion about how well GABA crosses the blood-brain barrier. Many people say the molecule is too large and its not very effective. I know a certain percentage does get into the brain because it slows me down. L-Theanine is a precursor to GABA and easily crosses the blood-brain barrier. Because of this you need less, perhaps 300mg two or three times daily. If that’s not effective, increase the dosage some.

I cannot recommend one over the other. You need more GABA but it is also less expensive than L-Theanine. You may want to experiment.

Arches Tinnitus Formula® has been proven helpful for people with tinnitus. The primary ingredient is Ginkgo biloba and one of its constituents is Bilobalide, which is a powerful glutamate antagonist. We have developed a special, and highly concentrated, Ginkgo biloba extract trademarked Ginkgo Max 26/7®. This extract contains a much higher dosage of all the ginkgo constituents, but especially Bilobalide. You can see an article on the Science Behind the Product which explains exactly how it works.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

Can GABA calm tinnitus?

Hi Barry,

I’ve read that oral GABA can help calm tinnitus but that it doesn’t pass the blood brain barrier. Is it worth using?

Thanks, Irene K.

Dear Irene,

GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) is a brain neurotransmitter that inhibits electrical activity and can help some reduce tinnitus and other conditions, such as anxiety, depression and epileptic seizure. While GABA can pass the blood-brain barrier it is not very efficient in doing so. Consequently, a high amount must be taken to get the benefits from it.

L-Theanine is an extract of green tea that is a precursor to GABA. This crosses the blood-brain barrier easily. Once in the brain it converts to GABA and provides a state of alert calmness that helps reduce stress.

The best L-Theanine is a patented product called Suntheanine®. This is used by many manufacturers who market L-Theanine.

You can achieve the benefits using either product but must take much more GABA than L-Theanine to get there. Typical dosage for GABA is 600-750 mg two or three times daily. Typical dosage for L-Theanine is 200 mg taken two or three times daily. So you must use about 3 times the amount of GABA to achieve the same amount of stress reduction.

L-Theanine is quite a bit more expensive than GABA, which offsets the lower dosage. I leave it up to you to decide which is more effective for you. For more information the subject you can read our article Tinnitus Anxiety & The Chemistry of Calm

Wishing you quiet times,

Barry Keate

Bioflavonoids for Tinnitus?

Hello Barry,

I have read that bioflavonoids can help with tinnitus. If so, how many mg’s per day?

Thank you,
Pat H.

Dear Pat,

Bioflavonoids are excellent supplements for good health. They are found in fruits and nuts and help maintain a healthy heart, reduce inflammation and fight allergies. However, they don’t do anything directly to reduce tinnitus.

Citrus bioflavonoids were used in the 1960’s in the product Lipo-Flavonoid. They were designed to reduce vertigo due to Meniere’s disease. In this regard they act as antihistamines, which are helpful in reducing vertigo and dizziness. Afterward, many ear doctors started recommending them for tinnitus because, at the time, they didn’t have anything else that was helpful. The company also changed its marketing approach to sell the product for tinnitus. Studies have since shown that Lipo-Flavonoid is helpful for vertigo but doesn’t do anything for most people with tinnitus. Ear doctors familiar with these studies stopped recommending them for tinnitus but some still do. You can read our article or a more detailed examination of Lipo-Flavonoid.

Arches Tinnitus Formula with Ginkgo Max 26/7 contains our proprietary extract of Ginkgo biloba, which is a more potent extract than other brands. It also has zinc picolinate and deodorized garlic. Both Ginkgo biloba and zinc have been proven in scientific studies to be helpful in reducing tinnitus noise levels for most people who use them. Arches Tinnitus Formula is most helpful for the great majority of people who have tinnitus due to noise exposure, reduced hearing and from toxic medications.

It takes up to three months to get the full benefit of Arches Tinnitus Formula so we recommend Arches Starter Kit, a full three-month supply of four bottles. You can buy them individually but the price of the starter kit is significantly reduced from retail pricing, you save more in shipping costs, and you don’t have to worry about running out during the critical three-month period.

Wishing you quiet times,

Barry Keate

Ginkgo or Lipoflavonoid?

Hi Barry,

Can lipoflavonoids or gingko biloba reduce the symptoms for people who suffer from tinnitus?

Nina S.

Dear Nina,

Lipoflavonoid won’t help much. It was developed to fight dizziness in those who have Meniere’s disease or other conditions that affect balance. It was never designed to reduce tinnitus and several clinical studies show it is ineffective for that.

Ginkgo biloba can be very helpful in reducing tinnitus. However, you have to ensure you get a high quality ginkgo. Consumer Labs has done independent study of most over-the-counter brands of ginkgo and found 77% lack one or more essential components that are required to provide clinically effective results.

Arches Tinnitus Formula contains our proprietary and trademarked ginkgo extract, Ginkgo Max 26/7. This extract is specifically designed for those with tinnitus. It is the most highly concentrated and effective ginkgo extract found anywhere. Here is an article detailing the differences between Ginkgo Max 26/7® and regular ginkgo.

Arches Tinnitus Formula with Ginkgo Max 26/7 has the best potential for reducing your tinnitus. It must be taken for three months to get the full benefit. We recommend Arches Tinnitus Starter Kit, which is a three-month supply.

Wishing you quiet times,
Barry Keate

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