Even stress can contribute to the ringing in your ears. “Technically, emotional stress is not a cause,” says Kinden. “But it’s like an amplifier on your stereo. If something’s not going right, at the end of the day you’ll notice your tinnitus is louder.” Caffeine has a similar effect. Luckily, your hearing specialist can help you with strategies to reduce your symptoms. “The counselling portion is huge when it comes to tinnitus,” Kinden says.