In this video, I’m talking about one of the most effective forms of Tinnitus treatment, Tinnitus Sound Therapy, coming up. (upbeat music) Hi guys. Cliff Olson, Doctor of Audiology and founder of Applied Hearing Solutions in Anthem, Arizona and on this channel, I cover a bunch of hearing related information to help make you a better informed consumer. If you’re into that, make sure you hit that subscribe button and don’t forget to click the bell to receive a notification every time I post a new video. Ringing of the ears, otherwise known as Tinnitus, affects approximately 15 percent of the world population and according to the American Tinnitus Association, approximately 50 million Americans suffer from Tinnitus and 20 million of those have chronic Tinnitus. There are two main types of Tinnitus. The first one is Objective Tinnitus. This is typically caused by the body’s circulatory system. This is the type of Tinnitus that can actually be heard by another individual. Then you have Subjective Tinnitus. This is the type of Tinnitus that most people have and it cannot be heard by anyone else, except for the person who has it.
This type of Tinnitus can have a ringing sound, a buzzing sound, a whooshing sound, a static sound, it can even sound a lot like crickets. Research tells us that most individuals with Tinnitus also have a hearing loss that can most often be successfully treated with hearing aids. We also know that replacing sound back to the brain with hearing aids is one of the most effective forms of Tinnitus treatment because it appears to shut that Tinnitus Generation Mechanism off. There are a variety of different Tinnitus treatments out there but one of the most common ones is using a sound therapy called masking. This is what most hearing aid manufacturers use inside of their hearing aids to help you mask over the sound of your Tinnitus. You’re basically trading one sound, for another sound. Typically, a static noise is used to create this masking effect and oftentimes they will use a white noise or a pink noise. Here’s an example of each. (static) (static) But when you use a static noise, you’re essentially trading one sound for another sound, with the hope that the masking sound is more pleasant to you than your Tinnitus.
But this where Widex, today’s video sponsor, uses a different approach. Instead of exclusively using Tinnitus noise maskers inside of their hearing aids, every hearing aid that they’ve developed since 2012, uses Zen Fractal Tones. Fractal Tones are musical in nature and music has been proven to reduce Tinnitus annoyance. The problem with traditional music though, is that you can habituate to it, or get used to it and then it loses its’ effectiveness. Fractal Tones are not repeatable so you never actually habituate to them and they’re played dichotically, which means you get different sounds in both ears, at the same time. Widex has five different Zen Tones that all have a unique sound profile to them.
You can see by this graph here, that all the Zen Tones are a little different from each other. Each one having a different pitch, tempo and intensity. This also allows you to pick which one works best for you and I’m going to play a sound sample of each one. For the purpose of this video, I’ve increased the volume of the Zen program so you can clearly hear the differences between all of them.
But remember, these Zen Tones are typically played at a quiet level in your hearing aids so they are not distracting. (musical tones) Widex also has what they call Zen Noise which is more like a traditional masker if you already know that that’s the type of sound that works for you. (static) One of the best things about Zen Tones is that you can actually do this sound therapy along with treating your actual hearing loss because you can combine these with your other traditional programs inside of your hearing aids, which means you get all of the benefits from having amplification to treat the hearing loss and on top of that, you also get the benefit of using the Zen Fractal Tones.
However, for maximum Tinnitus relief, it always recommended to combine sound therapy with a structured Tinnitus treatment program like Widex Zen Therapy. Widex Zen Therapy consists of four elements. The first element is counseling. This is where your hearing care provider provides you with Tinnitus education and possibly implements cognitive and behavioral intervention. The second element is amplification in order to ensure that your hearing loss is addressed properly, to reduce the contrast between your auditory environment and the Tinnitus. The third element is Fractal Tones. To receive the benefit of music in order to relax you and provide acoustic stimulation. The fourth element is to incorporate relaxation strategies to help you develop stress coping mechanisms to deal with your Tinnitus. To learn more about the Widex recommended relaxation strategies, check out the Widex Zen Tinnitus App. Research indicates that Widex Zen Therapy shows significant improvement in most users in as little as two months, with additional benefits all the way out to six months. It’s important to understand that while there is no cure for Tinnitus, it does not mean that there are not treatment options available that are effective for reducing your perception of Tinnitus and to help you cope with the stress of your Tinnitus.
You just have to make sure that you have the right tools in your toolbox and a hearing care provider who can help you implement them. That’s it for this video. If you have any questions, leave them in the comment section below. If you like the video, please share it and if you want to see other videos just like this one, go ahead and hit that subscribe button. I’ll see you next time. (upbeat music).
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