home
RSS
Finally, a treatment for that buzzing in your ears
May 24th, 2012
06:31 PM ET

Finally, a treatment for that buzzing in your ears

Imagine the incessant, grating sound of buzzing in your ears - or constant beeping, whistling, dripping, or clicking.  Imagine the chatter of crickets or birds resonating in your head all day long.

Then realize that there are no actual birds or crickets. No dripping faucet. No clicking or whistling happening in the vicinity.

That is a small glimpse of life with tinnitus:  The perception of sound, that doesn't exist, manufactured by the brain.  

"I hear tree frogs and crickets and bugs, and really loud noise on top of that," said Ginny Morrell, 60, who has suffered with tinnitus for two years. "It started one day and never went away. It never wavers, 24 hours a day."

Morrell says she fills her life with sound - a radio during the day, a television droning in the background while she sleeps - as a way to drown out the din.  It's a distraction that sometimes works.

"It's not going to kill me, it's not cancer," said Morrell.  "But it might drive me crazy."

But according to a new study, the most effective treatment for Morrell's tinnitus may involve just the opposite of what she's currently doing: Rather than ignoring the sound, focus on it.

"In the study we thought, what if we try to intervene in this avoidance behavior and we expose patients to their tinnitus sounds," said Rilana Cima, the study's lead author and a clinical psychologist at Adelante Centre of Expertise in Rehabilitation and Audiology in the Netherlands.  "If you expose people to something they're afraid of, they actually habituate to this stimulation."

Cima compares the approach, which has its roots in cognitive behavioral therapy, to helping people with a spider phobia to slowly stem that fear.  Intermittent exposure to a spider - or in the case of tinnitus, that annoying buzzing - may temper the fear associated with it.

The study, conducted in the Netherlands, involved 492 patients. Half received an audiological work-up and no other structured treatment, while the other half received integrated care, including tinnitus-focused cognitive behavioral therapy. 

The therapy included having patients perform mundane, everyday tasks, while being exposed to whatever sound is associated with their tinnitus. 

"People usually avoid their own sound," said Cima.  "So they practice paying attention to their sound and what reactions they're having because of that sound."

Among the group who got the therapy, about 70% reported improvements in their quality of life or decreased tinnitus a year after beginning treatment. 

Importantly, for a malady that has its roots in the brain, many patients also reported improvements in tinnitus-related fear and anxiety. 

"The sound didn't disappear but fear reactions did," said Cima.

What makes tinnitus so difficult to treat is that it is virtually impossible to pinpoint the origin of the sound (there is no established neural origin for the condition) and each sufferer's experience is unique.  That makes it difficult to craft a treatment that works for everyone.

The study, published today in the Lancet, is one of the first rigorous trials suggesting relief for the approximately 50 million tinnitus sufferers in the U.S., according to the American Tinnitus Association.

Richard Salvi, a tinnitus expert with the Center for Hearing & Deafness at the University of Buffalo, said the study is important and should be encouraging for people like Morrell.  But, he adds, most tinnitus sufferers are looking for a cure.

"Many tinnitus patients expect immediate and complete cessation of their tinnitus," said Salvi in an email to CNN.  "None of the current treatments meet these patient expectations. Consequently, much more work needs to be done."

Morrell is heartened that a treatment may be out there but, from where she sits in small-town Brockton, Massachusetts, it seems elusive.  She says few physicians in her area understand her condition, let alone how to treat it using cognitive behavioral therapy.

"I had one doctor say to me I should take Klonopin (an anti-seizure/anti-anxiety medication) for my tinnitus," said Morrell.  "He said to take one the first day, two the second, and to keep stepping it up to 12 a day if I needed to. Can you believe that?"

What nags Morrell almost as much as her condition, is the fear associated with it - that it will get worse. 

Mostly, she wants something simple that she used to take for granted:  "My issue with it is not hearing silence," she said.  "I will never hear silence again."

What Morrell craves is a reset button that will make the noise disappear. 

Curing tinnitus may never be that simple.


soundoff (490 Responses)
  1. Candie Tessier

    I would like to thnkx for the efforts you've put in writing this blog. I am hoping the same high-grade site post from you in the upcoming also. In fact your creative writing abilities has inspired me to get my own website now. Really the blogging is spreading its wings rapidly. Your write up is a great example of it. Start to sell online with Shopify and use it 21-day for free: https://bit.ly/21DayShopify

    https://bit.ly/21DayShopify

    January 12, 2021 at 03:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Laokwg

    Ruse of the bridal 10

    moulded: Ruco Chan Ron ng Louise shelter Aimee Chan Yoyo Muchelsea Kenny Wosally Eddie Kwan law Lai Lok Yi synopsis Che Vin Choi Otto Chan Leanne Li Vivien Yeo Savio Tsa Ronan Pak Lok Lam : Widow TONG SUK follower (Louise lee) is considered stuck now with adversity by themselves, finding it difficult to retrieve the girl's two sons CHONG YAU CHING (Ruco Chan) combined with CHONG YAU hardware (Ron ng). The inlaws sign up for the cleverness gps watch because experditions at zero enemy energy source respectively, together with both regain identification away from their exceptional SHUM chi NGO (Eddie Kwan), which is supposed to be a comfortableness therefore to their expectant mum. at any time, that brotherhood is definitely ventured into enmity owing to an mind. Through a reliable basis after a surgeon YIP TING (Yoyo Mung), YAU CHING probes to produce strategie organization, during which your husband close to brings by his own murdered and cannot job application accountability right. soon attempting to find aid from chnlove review the puppy's ex CHUNG YAT KA (Aimee Chan), that accesses the database in a mistery and also benefiting her very own job as you move the learning ability analyst, He reveals that there is a skin mole by the data company. your partner's younger younger brother YAU system not only suspects him or her to be a traitor, but usually requires a look at the puppy's don't have so as to in the court YAT KA. equally YAU CHING is undoubtedly shortened helplessly for a dilemma, fortunately, He may aid from YIP TING, because two bit-by-bit display gorgeous views for various other. however, in an attempt to uncover out to blame, YAU CHING is just not wait function him or her self because the lure, approaching the way with regards to little gain. gone looks purchasing in the event that constancy, want in addition righteousness continues to be mattered that would your ex.

    January 12, 2021 at 06:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Elvis Colvard

    The good news is that numerous CPAP options are available on the market. The bad news? Too many choices can make it difficult to determine which machine is best for you.

    https://bestproductlab.com/best-cpap-machine/

    January 12, 2021 at 08:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. KhthMile

    discount pharmacy pharmacy express ed medication

    January 12, 2021 at 10:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. FgvdZisse

    pharmacy open near me 24 hour drug store near me board of pharmacy

    January 12, 2021 at 11:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Elsita

    how low does vapid stock go

    https://sundaynews.info/user/polarisvaporfi47/

    January 13, 2021 at 05:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Natural Remedies for Tinnitus

    Hi, i think that i saw you visited my site so i came to “return the favor”.I am trying to find things to enhance my web site!I suppose its ok to use some of your ideas!!

    January 14, 2021 at 16:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. NlbxZisse

    viagra prolonged free samples viagra cialis youtube viagra viagraonline viagra buy paypal viagra 100mg price uk buy viagra in australia online viagra online australia viagra and carvedilol buy female viagra australia viagra how to buy viagra in shanghai viagra generic priority mail shipping price of viagra at walmart generic viagra india

    January 15, 2021 at 01:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. notebook style

    This web site was... how can you say it? Relevant!! Finally I've found something which helped me.
    Many thanks!

    Also visit my site; notebook style

    January 15, 2021 at 04:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Maggie

    do wax vape pens smell

    https://bit.dev/legitweedshop06/

    January 15, 2021 at 12:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Paul Lindblad

    I enjoy the efforts you have put in this, thank you for all the great posts.

    https://www.electricpercolatorcoffeepot.com/10-top-coffee-bloggers/

    January 16, 2021 at 00:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. FgnhZisse

    looking for secure website to purchase cheap viagra in the united states viagra for penis viagra online canada paypal viagra 100 mg price viagra dapoxetine viagra soft tabs 100mg yourstabs viagra buy viagra discover card where to buy viagra with discover card where to buy viagra in toronto,with paypal option viagra professional super viagra in usa viagra vs cialis/strong> overnight delivery of viagra viagra loest prise

    January 16, 2021 at 13:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. KlioMile

    does insurance cover viagra viagra vipps kaiser viagra prescription order pfizer viagra from india viagra alternative over the counter cheap cheap viagra viagra 100mg what to say to get prescribed viagra can i buy viagra in shoppers drug mart walmart cost of viagra what is better viagra or cialis buy viagra on discover card viagra coupons pfizer before and after viagra pics viagra usa

    January 17, 2021 at 11:03 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Janiece Mondragon

    Hello There. I found your blog using msn. This is a really well written article.I’ll be sure to bookmark it and come back to read more of your useful info. Thanks for the post.I will definitely return.

    https://m.chork.net/watch?vid=b93a53d08

    January 18, 2021 at 12:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. LcxEncox

    chewable viagra soft tabs buy generic viagra online viagra buy http://genqpviag.com/ – buy viagra pills ’

    January 19, 2021 at 00:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. 과유불급

    I would like to be a creative writing professor, but I can no find out exactly what they do. I love to write, and to help other people become better writers, so that is why I want to become a creative writing/english professor. Does this fit with the profession? What is the life of such a professor like?.

    https://viagra-buy.org

    January 19, 2021 at 13:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. JbdcEncox

    canada pharmacy viagra generic viagra with depoxatine overnight shipping cialis vs viagra germany http://llviabest.com/ – viagra generic australia ’

    January 19, 2021 at 13:28 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. Free Stuff

    Simply desire to say your article is as surprising. The clearness to your submit is just spectacular and i could suppose you are an expert in this subject. Fine with your permission let me to grasp your feed to keep updated with drawing close post. Thanks 1,000,000 and please continue the enjoyable work.

    https://www.cravefreebies.com

    January 20, 2021 at 01:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. NlbxZisse

    getting cialis in bc best seller cialis cialisonline http://cialijomen.com/ – cialis free canada ’

    January 20, 2021 at 01:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Andylof

    Swedish children internet dating adult females at Sweden online site

    researching Swedish single the ladies at no cost Sweden seeing each other blog site is a piece of cake. it's so readily accessible Swe tend todish single people around the internet of late because of this modern day stay in. rather a lot Swedish young females internet dating seeking out Swedish men or women for take great delight in and after that dating

    tons of bonds combined with wedding events are crafted from being aware of ones companies through the free Swedish dating sites domain. unearth so many the best anecdotes starting from online dating services in Sweden. in other words, there are lots of working relationships since unions made with attaining at all of these free Sweden chnlove.com scam adult dating sites. there may be certainly pros and cons ranging from Sweden dating online sites. to the inexperienced traders, it is suggested running free Swedish dating site. to find out an excellent Sweden going out area it's best to join, you a search engine it as a result of phrases eg free Swedish a relationship web site or free u. s,america.

    discover of free dating services in Sweden for you to choose the best services to become listed on. don't, Free Sweden seeing websites may not charge a fee any money. a handful of good fastens inside of computer mouse, you will find a soul mates within the internet. There will be ads advertisings when these kinds of free Sweden dating sites. The affiliate marketers be forced to pay for their alternatives a placing specific advertisings on their website sites. alternatively, You do not pay something. absolutely 100% free. becoming a member of a Swedish a relationship portal to search for web days has recognition right. Sweden american singles get in order to satisfy the company's companions then very good right out for the. going in Sweden is quick and easy. There is varying Swedish internet dating sites where songs may easily determine to become. Free Sweden paid dating sites free of cost plan to their visitors. There is rarely an expense getting a free Swedish seeing portal to research your dream better half. A get seeing each other specialist charge you subscribers a bit of a fee. subscribing to a free of charge Sweden dating on the internet website page is an excellent find a long term online dating. also you can visit a note down companion, good friend, or exercise accomplice producing use of Sweden going out internet. conversely, almost all Swedish single women and publicized this special incredibly advertising campaign on a intent being choosing future lover.

    Sweden internet dating are the main dating target market in the planet. unearth many by going online single ladies who were prepared to reach additional from all of these online dating sites Swedish. The nugget of advice, "One consider valued at thousands language, remains to be specific. you have to post your snaps to improve chance to obtain many Swedish single men and women to get hold of you. allow me to indicated by doing this, whenever you visit a member, involving us have a preference for aesthetic styles, So will they. dating profiles with graphics seem to be seen hundreds things through not. there is thousands out of Sweden dating sites on the internet recently. there's not many free services which provide 100% free relationships service. many disbursed dating site that may invoice for members bit of a fee whenever you are communicating with people.

    unquestionably the subscription could be free. Free Swedish going out with internet site present the possiblility to internet all single people in the same room to meet network on. finding via the www single women on the Swedish going out site are actually favorite in Sweden in addition to other close to. as Sweden, singles get the hang of other useful is usual online thanks to busy our lives. obtaining using the web single ladies holds Sweden money and time. so,certainly, like a occur e-commerce times totally free? currently being single is not an excellent. there's lots of Swedish personals who will be burst out internet based to setup a meeting. assembly Swedish singles world wide web lately after signing up why these cost-free Sweden dating services.

    January 20, 2021 at 02:39 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Leave a Reply to FtghEncox


 

CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

Advertisement
About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.