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31.01.2014

Will hearing aids reduce tinnitus, causes of tinnitus and vertigo - Review

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The British Tinnitus Association (BTA) is a world leader, with a trained team of friendly and experienced advisers for anyone who experiences tinnitus or those simply seeking guidance or information about the condition. Tinnitus is very much an individual condition; each person will describe different sounds heard and perceive it in a dissimilar manner.
Another inadvertent health condition associated with the misconception that tinnitus cannot be treated is hearing loss. Hearing impairment, like tinnitus, can also cause psychological and social difficulties because it interferes with a person’s ability to communicate effectively.
At present, there is no medication available to cure tinnitus, although a lot of research is currently in process. If you are experiencing troublesome tinnitus and would like an evaluation, the first step is to visit your GP.
There is evidence to suggest hearing aids can mask tinnitus sounds to help improve communication and reduce stress and anxiety levels, which normally exacerbate tinnitus.
Studies have shown robust evidence promoting hearing aid fitting as an effective treatment option of tinnitus control. One of the main reasons why open-fit hearing aids have been successful in tinnitus patients is because they do not significantly occlude the ear canal, which can aggravate tinnitus symptoms and, therefore, do not interfere with external sound transmission. Surveys conducted by several companies over the years have revealed that nearly 70 to 85 percent of hearing-impaired people report their tinnitus problem, while 10 to 15 percent of the population as a whole suffers from the condition. When it comes to relief from the painful tinnitus condition of persistent ear ringing, hearing aids actually prove to be a viable tool.
Hearing aids can be customized to hearing aids for tinnitus to soothe the irritating sounds that you keep hearing to offer you personalized sound therapy to help you get your focus off your tinnitus condition.
Hearing aids can provide intense relief from your condition in ways you never thought possible. Hearing aids therapy for tinnitus has been known to diver attention from the annoying sounds of tinnitus, making it easier to listen to other sounds instead of concentrating on those annoying ear ringing sounds you constantly face. The sound you hear from the hearing aids helps draw your attention away from the tinnitus itself.
Keep in mind that they do not eliminate tinnitus, but will help reduce the disturbing sounds you hear because of your tinnitus.
The most common reason for tinnitus faced by over 90% of the people is due to noise-induced hearing loss. People who are exposed for a long period of time to loud sounds greater than 90 dB can face damage of sensitive cells in their ears, which can ultimately lead to hearing loss. If you are a professional working in any of these fields and have not yet suffered majorly from hearing loss, make sure you take proper precautions in the form of ear muffs or ear plugs when in the vicinity of excessively loud noise. Studies have shown that the use of hearing aids can help to reduce tinnitus by correcting any type of hearing loss. If you are suffering from tinnitus as a result of hearing loss, it is advisable that you use hearing aids constantly when awake – so that you don’t face the problem of prolonged ringing in your ears from the moment you wake up. Modern hearing aids are in fact quite stylish and have an aesthetical value like never before – so a wearer does not have to feel self-conscious about adding hearing aids to their wardrobe repertoire. Open-fit Hearing Aids: Open fit hearing aids use a tiny speaker or a tube placed in the ear canal to help amplify sound unlike the traditional earmolds which are bulky. Combination Type Hearing Aids: Combination hearing aids are less common, but are being explored as possible devices to negate tinnitus. These devices basically amplify sound as well as generate a tiny sound pulse in an attempt to clear the periodic sound caused by tinnitus. Visit your local physician or an ENT specialist (preferred) to have an initial examination of your hearing problems. A physician will help rule out other medical reasons that may be the cause of your tinnitus such as ear wax, tumors, cardiovascular or blood pressure problems etc.
Most audiologists are licenses hearing aid dispensers who will provide you with the correct type of hearing aid as per your condition. However, always check with your local authorities if the audiologist is licensed to dispense hearing aids for tinnitus. There are several online websites that will help you to find a licensed audiologist, who will help you solve your hearing problems. Remember that counseling with experienced hearing healthcare professionals and audiologists trained for tinnitus management will help you regain your quality of life.
For children or youngsters under the age of 21, Medicaid will pay your diagnosis and treatment of hearing problems including hearing aids. The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHID) by the United States Department of Health and Human Services will also cover your child’s health insurance in case you are denied Medicaid.
Medicare will cover only the diagnostic and medical costs that are involved, but not the cost of the hearing aid itself. There are a few NGO’s that provide financial assistance as well as refurbished hearing aids to those in need. The cost of audiology tests and hearing aid evaluations are sometimes covered in private health plans.


Hearing aid maintenance is important because most hearing aid devices are at risk of damage from earwax and body moisture.
It is necessary that you clean and maintain the hearing aid regularly and rid your ear of any wax. Regular visits to your audiologist are important when it comes to hearing testing and to check the performance of your hearing aid. The cost of hearing aids for tinnitus will depend chiefly on your specific condition and requirements when it comes to hearing aids. IntroductionThe prevalence of tinnitus is significantly higher among hearing-impaired persons than in the normal-hearing population. Learn about an easy step-by-step process that will allow you to successfully manage patients with tinnitus. This course reviews a comprehensive process in working with patients who report severe cases of tinnitus. This course will focus on all the elements required in offering tinnitus management in your facility. When working with tinnitus patients, it is imperative that your referring physicians are educated in tinnitus therapy and proper referrals. Not all patients will choose to seek advice from health care professionals despite its obvious impact on psychological health.
Tinnitus is commonly accompanied by hearing loss, yet people will often neglect their disability and continue with everyday life.
The treatment plan is tailored to meet the individual’s requirements with the aim of aiding habituation of tinnitus rather than eliminating noises completely.
Hearing aids are signal processors; they alter the signal input to improve it for the wearer by making sounds louder, which can help with hearing and speech comprehension. The loudness and prominence of tinnitus is decreased by activating the auditory system and amplifying background sound. They provide sufficient amplification in patients with a mild-moderate hearing loss, have an in-built noise reducing control, and are perceived as highly comfortable. Most of the time, people confuse tinnitus rather than hearing loss to be the cause for difficulty in hearing. New age hearing aids for tinnitus and hearing loss are designed to be compact and fit inside your ear without sticking out. The audiologist will determine the amount of hearing loss and the actual underlying cause and helps in further rehabilitation of the problems. If you feel at any point that your hearing has changed, contact your audiologist immediately for improper setting of the hearing aid or any damage thereof. The tools and counseling techniques will comfortably guide you through a process of meeting the needs of these patients and recommendations for appropriate referral considerations.
This presentation will give you solutions on how to have this conversation with your referring physicians. This informal discussion will teach you about using Zen for this population and provide an opportunity for you to ask questions to an expert on your patients. This may be due to the common notion that if a specific cause of tinnitus is not found, effective treatment is unavailable; the patient will therefore, have to live with their symptoms. The knowledge that you can mask tinnitus with a hearing aid is not an innovative concept, but previous hearing aids occluded the ear canal with a tight fitting ear mould. The participants in this study had a mild-moderate hearing loss predominately in the 2-6 kHz frequency range. In conclusion, the combination of using a hearing aid and employing counselling techniques will equip the patient with tinnitus and a mild-moderate hearing loss in the 2- 6 kHz region to habituate to their tinnitus and learn how to manage symptoms better. The open fit type aids also prevent occlusion in the ear, which was a major problem with traditional molds. You will need a battery tester, a listening tube, a drying container and a forced air blower. For example, tinnitus often has a negative impact on a person’s physical and emotional well-being, causing increased stress levels, concentration problems, sleeping problems and reduced ability to hear. However, research has shown that tinnitus does gradually get better, and tolerance of tinnitus increases with time with the help of a tinnitus management program. A referral to the ENT specialist will be facilitated to carry out a hearing test, tympanometry, CT scan, and x-rays to ensure there are no underlying pathologies.
The hearing aid receives sound through a microphone, which converts the sound waves to electrical signals and sends them to an amplifier.
Patients reported a hollow reverberation amplifying chewing sounds and the sensation of tinnitus. The ENT specialist will make a referral to an Audiologist for other audiological measurements of tinnitus including pitch masking, loudness matching, and minimum masking level.
A new type of hearing aid called the open-fit has been designed to successfully alleviate tinnitus symptoms by introducing a noise-reduction control. In conjunction with hearing aid fitting, all patients had tinnitus retraining therapy, which proved to be effective at habituating sound perception, allowing the patient to ignore the presence of tinnitus over a period of six months.


In addition, you will receive tinnitus counselling and methods for treating tinnitus including hearing aid fitting if appropriate. The slim tube connected to the hearing aid is cosmetically appealing, comfortable to wear, as well as eliminating external sound sources without interfering with the transmission of sounds from the outer ear to the inner ear.
One of the included services in the Veterans Health Administration is Audiology.If you are eligible for VA Benefits and suspect a hearing loss, an audiologist who is a part of the VA Health Care team will perform the appropriate testing to diagnose and treat your hearing impairment. In addition, several well-documented tinnitus therapies, some of which involve hearing aids, are currently available.A Novel Approach to Enticing People with Hearing Loss to Seek TreatmentThe stigma associated with tinnitus has not been investigated to the same extent as the stigma associated with hearing loss. However, according to anecdotal reports, considerably less stigma is associated with tinnitus than with hearing loss. Once the hearing aids are received you will be able to return to the clinic for servicing and repair needs.The only downside to obtaining your hearing aids through the VA is that the wait time to receive them is usually longer, ranging from 2 weeks to 6 months. This will depend on the demands of the Audiology clinic at that particular VA Health Center.
The campaign focused on the possibilities of achieving relief from the symptoms of tinnitus through hearing aid use rather than reducing hearing problems. The campaign offered a free trial of Widex CLEAR hearing aids with the Zen fractal tone feature to people with hearing impairment who were also suffering from tinnitus.
Precisely how is unknown, but it may be that tinnitus is aggravated by silence, as the brain tries to compensate for the neural stimulation it is being deprived of due to the hearing loss.
Amplification increases neural activity and may thus succeed in reducing the brain’s compensatory activity. Furthermore, 69% of these participants experienced a lesser degree of tinnitus annoyance when listening to fractal tones vs. Sixty-eight percent also reported that negative expectations regarding the benefits and handling of hearing aids had influenced their decision not to buy hearing aids, and 39% reported stigma to be a reason. The proportion increased to 20% when they examined the subgroup with a severe degree of hearing loss.
Similar findings were obtained in the MarkeTrak V (Kochkin, 2000) study, which is a large-scale investigation of the reasons why some hearing aids are not worn or used after purchase. The campaign offered a free trial of Widex CLEAR hearing aids with the Zen feature for a period of four weeks to hearing-impaired people with tinnitus.
There was also considerable interest from people with tinnitus with normal hearing, even though the advertisements specifically stated that prospective candidates must have a hearing loss to be included in the trial.SubjectsOf the roughly 200 hearing-impaired persons included in the trial, 50% did not own hearing aids. Given the low hearing aid adoption rates among hearing-impaired persons with tinnitus in the US reported by the Better Hearing Institute (Khalfa, Bella, Roy, Peretz, & Lupien, 2003), the fact that such a large proportion of the hearing-impaired tinnitus sufferers in the trial was perhaps not surprising. Moreover, the vast majority had a relatively mild degree of hearing loss.Eighty percent of the non-owners were men and 20% were women. Audiometric range for the participants in the trial (averaged across the left and right ears).Hearing instrumentsParticipants were fitted with wireless CLEAR440 (high-end) or CLEAR330 (mid-range) hearing aids (either the Passion (PA), Fusion (FS), m-CB (m-model with ClearBand), or 9 model) in accordance with their audiometric configurations and personal preferences. Participants were fitted with the Passion (PA), Fusion (FS), m-CB (m-model with ClearBand), or 9 models in the CLEAR440 (C4) or CLEAR330 (C3) hearing aid series.One of the unique features of the CLEAR hearing aid family is the availability of the InterEar-Zen program. When stress increases, the perception of tinnitus increases, and when tinnitus increases, stress increases. SmartSpeak is a verbal messaging system which aims to make it easier for the users to control their hearing aid through verbal instructions recorded in the user’s native language.
For example, SmartSpeak will alert the users when the battery is running low, and inform them of the program mode they are in when they change listening program.ResultsParticipants completed a questionnaire on their experiences with the Zen feature and the CLEAR hearing aid at the end of the four-week trial.
The results for the Zen feature indicated a high degree of satisfaction with the feature among the hearing aid candidates with tinnitus. The participants were asked to evaluate the sound quality of the hearing aid on a number of aspects, including naturalness of sound, occurrence of feedback, and quality of own voice.
The hearing aid candidates were therefore asked to evaluate the CLEAR hearing aid’s effectiveness in a relatively optimal speech perception situation in quiet surroundings, as well as in one of the, for hearing-aid users, most challenging situations, when several people in a crowd are talking at once.
The vast majority (74%) were satisfied or very satisfied with their own ability to determine where sound was coming from when wearing the CLEAR hearing aids. Much effort has therefore been put into designing the CLEAR hearing aids to be user-friendly and straightforward to use. The results from the survey of trial participants (Figure 6) indicate that the hearing aid candidates did indeed find the hearing aids easy to manage. Tinnitus treatment and the effectiveness of hearing aids: Hearing care professional perceptions. MarkeTrak VIII: The prevalence of tinnitus in the United States and the self-reported efficacy of various treatments. Effects of acoustical stimuli delivered through hearing aids on tinnitus.Journal of the American Academy of Audiology, 21(7), 461-473.



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