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Relief for Ringing Ears; New Discovery brings QUIET for most Tinnitus Patients.

It's called tinnitus /tini't s/, and it is the tinkling, ringing or hissing heard in one or both ears. And actually, it is not in your ears at all, it's in your brain. It is estimated that 1 in 100 people in the UK have tinnitus which persists most of the time, and severely affects their quality of life.

A recent white paper published in the peer-reviewed journal the Hearing Review reports relief among 60 percent of patients from a sampling provided by 230 practitioner. Of this group, one-in-five (22 percent) said they received "major relief." This is good news for anyone with head noise.

Where Does Head Noise Come From? In the cochlea thousands of "hair cells" are set in motion and sound is converted to electrical signals which travel along the auditory nerve to the brainstem for further processing.

The primary auditory cortex is the region of the brain that is responsible for processing of auditory (sound) information.

"Tinnitus is likely triggered by random neural activity in the auditory cortex," said Tim Evans, Managing Director at Hearing and Mobility Ltd.

"It can be caused by noise trauma, allergic reactions, and sometimes strong prescription medications.

While some head noise may subside after 12 to 20 hours--after a day of operating a table saw ... or at the completion of a brief regimen of prescription medication--with continual exposure tinnitus can become permanent."

According to Oregon Health Sciences University, 90 percent of patients with severe tinnitus also possess hearing loss. Patients who do not seek help for their hearing loss will perceive a worsening of their head noise.

"One major inadvertent tragedy is the belief that tinnitus cannot be helped," said Sergei Kochkin, PhD, executive director of the Better Hearing Institute. "People, in addition to not seeking help for their tinnitus, also do not seek help for their hearing loss specifically because they concurrently have tinnitus." The report concludes that citizens with ringing ears should seek the help of a practitioner who is knowledgeable about treating tinnitus with hearing aids. Relief can now be achieved for most people.

Relief is Here!

A mild to moderate hearing loss causes the listener to experience a reduction in the awareness of ambient sounds. When head noise is present, this reduction in ambient sounds causes the head noise to seemingly increase. This study documents quantitative improvement achieved with the fitting of prescription hearing aids programmed with specific algorithms.

All Hearing and Mobility Centres are staffed by practioners who have completed special training education courses in dealing with head noise said Tim Evans. Treatment comprises conducting an electronic hearing test, then importing the patient's audiogram into test unit hearing instruments. The practitioner and the patient can then see what the hearing condition of the ears are and how hearing instruments would overcome the problems.

Next, by increasing the amplification of low-level sounds as part of treatment and reducing maximum output of the instrument, we can move the patient's tinnitus which was previously conspicuous in the foreground of their perception, and relegate it appropriately to the background with all other environmental sounds," said Tim Evans. "The very act of taking the focus off of tinnitus spells relief for most patients.

"What is gratifying in our work is the patient's emotion as they realize their tinnitus has subsided, on the spot."

Programmable Instruments to Try Instrument programmability and practitioner competency are the keys to achieving tinnitus relief.

Patients with severe hearing loss should consider more powerful hearing aids, such as the GN ReSound Alera 87TS, which provides up to 55 deciBels of gain in addition to unprecedented feedback cancellation and directional performance.

Patients with mild to moderate hearing loss should consider the GN ReSound Alera 77TS that identifies unique sound environments and adjusts to them instantly and Data Logging, that links with the Acoustic Signature feature to identify and log individual sound environments.

A third instrument, GN ReSound Alera 61TS, is for tinnitus-patients with very little hearing loss. The instruments are fully digital and can be programmed to reduce the tinnitus sensation. Patients also receive the added benefit of improved hearing and understanding.

Hearing and Mobility are offering a free demonstration on these programmable hearing instruments. "We can help most tinnitus patients, and your satisfaction is absolutely guaranteed," Tim Evans said. Call Hearing and Mobility for a no-obligation appointment. 02920 691 945, Cardiff - 2a Merthyr Road, Whitchurch, CF14 1DG.

CAPTION(S):

Certain prescription hearing instruments can be tuned to bring ambient sounds back to a normal level, thereby suppressing head noise.

Head noise is louder than ambient sounds to a listener who has a hearing problem.

In the cochlea thousands of tiny "hair cells" called stereocilia are set in motion and sound is converted to electrical signals.

With hearing loss, the hair cells are damaged and cannot pick up sound properly. This damaged signal is sent to the brain.

The damaged signal causes random neural activity in the auditory cortex, triggering the sound of tinnitus.
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Publication:South Wales Echo (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Aug 14, 2013
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