This week is Tinnitus Awareness Week, an annual event to help raise the public’s awareness of this common hearing condition.
Tinnitus causes the sufferer to hear ringing, hissing, whistling, humming or even buzzing in one or both ears. These sounds are internal and do not come from outside sources. The sounds vary in volume and may be intermittent or continuous.
In some cases the cause can be linked to problems with the ear such as hearing loss, genetic damage to the inner ear and age-related deafness. Exposure to loud music can also lead to tinnitus. For some however, the cause is unknown.
The severity of symptoms will vary from person to person. For some the noises will be bearable and only occasionally experienced. For others, the noises are constant and can impact on their psychological health causing stress, depression and anxiety.
If you think you may have tinnitus, seeking help from your GP is recommended. Depending on your circumstances, there are various treatment methods you can try.
Hypnosis for tinnitus
A complementary therapy often used alongside other treatments for tinnitus is hypnotherapy. A hypnotherapist can work with the subconscious part of the mind, to retrain the brain to be less disturbed by the noises. This works by suggesting to the subconscious that the noises are no more than background noise and should be processed in this way. If you are suffering from anxiety or stress in relation to your tinnitus, hypnotherapy can help with this too.
Lowering stress levels and learning to live with tinnitus can greatly improve quality of life for those with the condition.