Tuning out tinnitus.
Our world is alive with sound. Laughter, unforgettable melodies, waves breaking on the shore – all these sounds enrich our lives and are literally music to our ears. But what happens when one sound suddenly takes control?
If we begin to hear an annoying noise that never seems to go away, it can be distracting, put us on edge, and we may feel like no one understands what we’re going through. But this phenomenon called tinnitus is a common condition and there are ways to find relief and restore peace of mind. Together with our loved ones, we can learn to live with tinnitus by learning how to control it, instead of letting it control us.
The truth about tinnitus.
- The prevalence of tinnitus is often related to the degree of hearing loss.*
- 10 % – 15 % of people suffer from chronic tinnitus, i. e. more than 6 months.*
- About 20 % of patients with tinnitus find the symptoms difficult to bear.*
- Over 90 % of tinnitus sufferers also have a hearing impairment.*
- Tinnitus is a common disorder with many possible triggers.*
- Tinnitus is often related to spontaneous nerve fiber activity.*
The many faces of tinnitus.
Tinnitus sounds different to everyone. It can be high or low, loud or quiet, ever-present or infrequent. And it has many possible triggers such as damage to the ear or jaw problems.
Many people with tinnitus feel that it lowers their quality of life. And in many cases, tinnitus is accompanied by hearing loss. Sometimes tinnitus goes away, and sometimes you have to find ways to live with its effects.
Because each person perceives tinnitus so differently, it’s important to seek professional help to find the course of action that’s best for you.
Step by step: Finding your way out.
On your search for a solution, it’s important to remember that tinnitus is not an illness, but a symptom – similar to pain. The goal is to find relief from this symptom.
The constant noise can set off negative emotional and behavioral reactions that make you focus on tinnitus. For example, if tinnitus makes you feel stressed, you might withdraw from social situations. Or it might keep you awake at night, making you tired or depressed. These things can cause a downward spiral.
Break the cycle.
Start with a hearing test. If you also have hearing loss, simply using hearing aids may help to reduce the annoyance of tinnitus because when you’re busy hearing the world, you’re distracted from tinnitus.
A tinnitus therapy signal can provide relief.
Besides amplifying the sounds around us, some hearing aids also feature a tinnitus noiser function. What is the benefit of this combination?
In very quiet hearing environments, regular hearing aids do not have so many noises to amplify to help distract you from your tinnitus. This is when the tinnitus noiser function might be helpful. By emitting a customized therapy signal, it can distract you from the tinnitus. Our hearing aids are equipped with different therapy signal types: Four nature-inspired ocean wave signals and five pre-programmed static types can offer a customized solution that distracts you from the tinnitus – so you can relax and focus.
Setting up individuality, turning down tinnitus.
Signia hearing aids offer many setting options for the tinnitus noiser function so your Hearing Care Professional can adjust the optimum one for you.
Here are some examples:
- Separate noiser signal generator
- Two programmable modes: Tinnitus therapy signals only or mixed mode
- Four nature-inspired ocean wave therapy signals
- Five pre-programmed static therapy signals: White noise, pink noise, speech noise, brown noise, and high tone noise
- Static therapy signals customizable in up to 20 bands
At peace with tinnitus: Practical tips.
When dealing with tinnitus, a positive attitude is very helpful: Tinnitus is one of many sounds you hear – the key is to learn to make it fit into the soundscape around you.
Useful tips are:
- Relearn how to hear. The more varied sound impressions you hear, the less you focus on tinnitus. So listen consciously to the world around you.
- Recuperative sleep. If you’re active during the day, it’s easier to sleep at night. Many other factors also influence your sleep – so experiment to see which habits positively affect your nightly rest.
- Keep moving. Spending time with loved ones and enjoying activities improves your outlook and decreases tinnitus’ hold on your life.
- Avoid silence. Reducing time in silence makes it harder for tinnitus to take hold – so relax with enjoyable sounds like audio books or soothing music.
- Stay fit. Physical fitness is important – even if your tinnitus seems louder when doing sports, it’s no cause for concern.
- Effective relaxation. Tinnitus can cause tension, so it’s important to learn and regularly use relaxation methods like Feldenkrais, yoga, tai chi, and qi gong.
There are many ways to effectively overcome tinnitus today. For further information, talk to a Hearing Care Professional close to you.