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Help with tinnitus

What is tinnitus?

Tinnitus is the perception of sounds or noise within the ears when there is no external sound source. These sounds are often described as ringing, humming or buzzing noises and they can be intermittent or continuous.

Tinnitus is a condition that affects 10 – 15% of the adult population, and the majority of people with tinnitus also have some degree of hearing loss. Tinnitus can be triggered by a variety of causes, but is commonly linked to exposure to loud sounds, which damage the delicate sensory cells of the inner ear.

The condition has also been associated with ear infections, excessive earwax, high blood pressure and sensory nerve disorders. Studies also show that stress causes an increase in tinnitus disturbance. A medical consultation is always recommended to rule out any significant medical condition.

Managing tinnitus

Because tinnitus is the sensation of hearing sound that is inaudible to others, and often accompanies hearing impairment, treating hearing loss with hearing aids will make it easier to hear soft environmental sounds. This can counteract the overcompensation and make tinnitus less annoying.

Sound from the environment, music or noise generators can help to minimise the contrast between the buzzing or ringing of tinnitus and the surrounding environment.

Many hearing instruments are available at Devon Hearingcare that have special programs providing a masker for tinnitus, and we supply Widex hearing aids with the patented Zen program. The Zen tones are inspired by the relaxing effect of certain types of music. Zen plays random, chime-like tones that can be used for relaxation and for making tinnitus less noticeable.

If you need any help or advice about tinnitus, your first step is to arrange a tinnitus consultation where we will fully test your hearing and talk you through the options suitable for you.


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