I will be sharing with you an effective rehabilitation program known as the tinnitus retraining therapy, consisting of sound therapy and specialized counselling. This has been proven to be one of the most comprehensive and effective method to dull the noise in hundreds of thousands of patients in recent years.
How does Tinnitus Retraining Therapy (TRT) help to silence the constant ringing in ears?
TRT is aimed at habituating or retraining your subconscious mind’s perception to the tinnitus signal and your body’s reflex reactions (involving the auditory, limbic and autonomic nervous systems) induced by tinnitus. It has been developed based on the neurophysiological model by Jastreboff PJ.
It is akin to how you hear the raindrops falling onto the roof. At first you hear it but after a while you stop noticing it. The idea of the tinnitus retraining therapy is to retrain your brain to stop noticing and eventually naturally block out the tinnitus noise by dissociating the tinnitus sounds from distress.
If your subconscious mind perceives the tinnitus noise with distress or negative emotion, a fight or flight response will be evoked in your body. Your conscious mind and body would then focus on and react towards the tinnitus noise as a threat.
Once this negative association is being established in your mind, a bad memory loop is created and this may cause the tinnitus noise you hear to re-run in your brain (not the ear)! This is often the case for severe tinnitus sufferers. Therefore you need to break this negative feedback loop causing the noise!
By listening to relaxing natural sounds (such as rain), combined with specialized counselling by a habituation counsellor, you will slowly dissociate sounds from distress. If you are able to change your perception of the tinnitus noise you hear from annoyance and distress to neutral, you will be able to “habituate” the constant ringing in ears.
Gradually, you will notice the constant ringing in ears less. Even if you do hear it, it will no longer bother you like it used to, just like the raindrops falling on your roof.
Selecting your therapy sounds
Sound therapy typically require with the use of sound generators so that you are exposed to a controlled and consistent sound environment 24 hours a day.
Tip: There is a wide range of sounds you can select from but you will need to do so with your therapist based on your tolerance and condition. The sounds you select must be neutral to you, i.e. it should not evoke any negative feelings or reactions in you. Some of the best background sounds to use are from the nature, such as rain, wind etc. They tend to be more soothing and effective compared to man-made sounds.
It is important to understand that the introduction of sounds is not to mask the tinnitus noise as you won’t be able to habituate a signal if it cannot be detected in the first place. The idea is to expose you to a neutral sound so that you will stop concentrating on the negatively perceived tinnitus noise, hence making them less noticeable.
Tip: Tinnitus sufferers tend to withdraw from sounds. However, silent environments tend to increase the severity of tinnitus as the slightest sound will take on an even greater meaning to the subconscious mind.
Find Out More…
Hopefully you’ve found the tips and suggestions I’ve provided on this page to be useful. However, the above information is still not sufficient for you to embark on the Tinnitus Retraining Therapy. You will need to first find a certified habituation counselor.
What I also strongly recommend you do now is to check out the Tinnitus Miracle by Thomas Coleman to find out more details on the Tinnitus Retraining Therapy. Coleman has provided great details on how the retraining program differs for different categories of tinnitus suffer and what you can expect from your retraining sessions.
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