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He discovered Thought Field Therapy (TFT) by accident whilst treating one of his patients who had an extreme phobia of water.
It was only later that a specific algorithm technique was developed by a Stanford trained engineer and personal performance coach called Gary Craig. Thinking of negative thoughts in relation to your tinnitus causes negative energy in your body.
You can tap 6 or 7 times on each point or the length of time it takes you to breathe in and out.
Like any health, spiritual or psychological practice it is far more beneficial if you practice every day before you are suffering stress or anxiety symptoms. My recent post entitled How to Habituate to Tinnitus looked at Tinnitus Habituation from a mainstream perspective to make sure that you have covered all of your bases with regard to tinnitus treatments. Every journey begins with the first step however preparing the ground before making the first step can be crucial to maintaining longevity for making changes in our lives.
This post will explain the mainstream steps of treatment you might experience in your quest to find a tinnitus solution.
Amplifying surrounding sounds, enabling better hearing and clarity, and easing communication in general. Enabling the patient to hear more environmental sound, thereby drawing attention away from the tinnitus and toward other sounds.
We offer an array of tinnitus hearing aids with embedded sound therapy stimuli in three different technology levels: Premium, Advanced, and Standard.
Premium Superior technology for the tinnitus patient who is active and frequently encounters social or business situations in which ease of hearing and tinnitus relief are critical.
Advanced Modern, high quality technology perfect for easing communication with friends and family, watching TV, group interactions, and routine or predictable social situations.
Standard Excellent, value-based technology designed to deliver affordable relief without compromising on tinnitus specific features. Sound therapy includes different types of treatment sounds, and therapies differ by the volume of the treatment sound relative to the tinnitus. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, please call 999 or go to an accident and emergency services facility to seek immediate care.
Tinnitus disturbs lives and negatively affects the quality of life of about 2% of the adult world population.
AcknowledgmentsThis study was made possible by the Charite - Universitatsmedizin Berlin Research Funds. Pure tone audiogram measured on the left and right ear of the male and female tinnitus patients with hearing loss in the upper frequency range.
Tinnitus frequency (A) and tinnitus loudness (B) measured in the right and left ear of the male and female tinnitus patients with hearing loss.
Hearing loss measured in the right and left ears of patients with compensated and decompensated tinnitus.
Total TQ scores (A) and scores of the subscale “somatic complaints” (B) measured in patients with left-side, right-side or bilateral tinnitus. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has created a power tools database showing sound levels of some common construction tools. A framing saw measures about 82 decibels, the equivalent of children in a noisy school cafeteria.
According to OSHA, if you experience any of the following, have your hearing evaluated by a physician. You have trouble following a conversation when background noise is present or multiple people are talking simultaneously. Additionally, there are commercially available tools you can buy to monitor the sound level around you.
We will be provided with an authorization token (please note: passwords are not shared with us) and will sync your accounts for you. In this study, we describe differences between neural plasticity in auditory cortex (AC) of animals that developed subjective tinnitus (group T) after noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) compared to those that did not [group non-tinnitus (NT)].
Despite these severe impairments and the large number of patients affected, there is still no established treatment available to safely and effectively alleviate tinnitus. Although short or acute tinnitus percepts are experienced occasionally by virtually everyone, chronic tinnitus develops only in a sub-population of humans as well as in the different animal model systems.
We have recently published the first report comparing neuronal plasticity following NIHL in animals that develop a tinnitus percept (group T) with plastic changes in animals that do not [group non-tinnitus (NT)], even though both animal groups did not differ in NIHL (17). Based on these results we have proposed a model for tinnitus prevention that points to a global inhibitory mechanism in auditory cortex (AC) that may prevent tinnitus genesis in animals with high overall activity in the auditory system, whereas this mechanism does not seem to be available for tinnitus prevention in animals with low overall activity. In the present follow-up study we present a further, more detailed analysis compared to the Ahlf et al. A total of 35 eight to ten weeks old male gerbils purchased from Charles River Laboratories, Inc. All animals were handled before the beginning of the experiments and accustomed to the setup environment to minimize stress.
The setups for behavioral and electrophysiological recordings have been described in detail earlier (17, 18).
Three different types of PPI modulated ASR paradigms (17) were performed to assess, first, hearing capacities [behavioral and reflex based audiogram (19)] and, second, the potential existence of a tinnitus percept (20) after the noise trauma.
For tinnitus testing we used two modified ASR paradigms in all animals before and after trauma. Of the 35 animals investigated behaviorally, 20 were used for electrophysiological recording in brainstem and AC. We statistically analyzed behavioral and neuronal response amplitude data as well as FFT frequency spectra by parametric tests; response latencies and durations were assessed by non-parametric tests as one cannot assume normal distribution for these parameters. This site will look much better in a browser that supports web standards, but it is accessible to any browser or Internet device.
One quarter of all workers in British Columbia are exposed to occupational noise loud enough to damage their hearing. This compact disc features filtered music and speech to simulate what it is like to have a high frequency hearing loss.
This is a guide to hearing conservation programs and includes the essential requirements for employers and workers.
Occupational Audiologists at WorkSafeBC can advise and assist you in developing your program.
This is a technical document that gives details on how noise surveys should be performed and how the results should be reported. This document explains how occupational noise measurements can be refined and used to calculate noise exposure levels. Friends and families of hard of hearing people will find these tips helpful for communication. Acupuncture was developed with the belief that energy pathways hold the key to our physical wellbeing.
Whilst undergoing treatment she complained that her anxiety was originating from her stomach. Don’t worry too much on the number of taps just try and make sure you are tapping the right pressure points. It is therefore a preventative measure rather than a necessary measure after you find yourself in trouble.
In most cases finding your tinnitus solution is a long term strategy so preparing for long term changes is more than just taking the first step. Before posting on more specialised treatments i think it is important to acknowledging the mainstream types of tinnitus habituation treatment available. The accident resulted in one of our founding members suffering head injuries and hearing damage which caused persistent tinnitus. The authors thank Nina Zirke and Theresa Morgenstern for collecting the data.ReferencesJastreboff, PJ.
Without quality hearing protection, you’re playing Russian roulette with your hearing. This means that you will not need to remember your user name and password in the future and you will be able to login with the account you choose to sync, with the click of a button.
This page doesn't support Internet Explorer 6, 7 and 8.Please upgrade your browser or activate Google Chrome Frame to improve your experience. To this end, our analysis focuses on the input activity of cortical neurons based on the temporal and spectral analysis of local field potential (LFP) recordings and an in-depth analysis of auditory brainstem responses (ABR) in the same animals. The development of effective therapies for tinnitus is mainly hampered by the fact that the exact neuronal mechanisms leading to the phantom percept and its chronic manifestation are still largely unknown. We currently do not know why some patients with hearing impairments develop chronic tinnitus while others with the same shift in hearing threshold do not, and vice versa why some but not all subjects without detectable noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) still develop tinnitus, although first models that may solve this enigma have been published (14–17). As we could demonstrate, NT animals showed higher overall auditory cortical and brainstem activity before noise trauma compared to T-animals. We suggest that by activating this global inhibitory mechanism the NT animals may actively counteract the development of maladaptive increased response gains in AC seen in T-animals that possibly reflect the tinnitus development.
During the first week, animals were tested first, with three different paradigms of pre-pulse inhibition (PPI) of the acoustic startle reflex (ASR) to evaluate the audiograms for each animal and acquire baseline data for the tinnitus percept evaluation. The measurements were performed before and usually 7 days after the acoustic trauma in a single 4 h block.
Mean PPI effect (±95% confidence interval) in six exemplary animals classified as non-tinnitus (NT) and tinnitus (T) perceiving.
Root mean square (RMS) values of the LFP recordings in AC with 70 dB SPL stimulation intensity. Signals were recorded using a Plexon Multichannel Acquisition Processor (Plexon Inc., Dallas, TX, USA) after amplification by a JHM NeuroAmp 401 (J. Among these, the complete recording protocol in AC could be accomplished in four T and two NT animals. This interactive ebook gives an overview of noise-induced hearing loss and explains what is required of a hearing loss prevention program that benefits both workers and employers.


An important part of the review is hearing test information, which indicates the extent of occupational hearing loss for a particular worksite. Anyone who has worked through the companion document, Occupational Noise Surveys, may need the information in Basic Noise Calculations.
Lawn mowing, fitness classes, truck and tractor pulls, airplanes, table saws, rock concerts, snowmobiles---all these environments can be too loud. EFT’s emphasis is on tapping to maintain a flow of healthy energy in the body for emotional and physical well being.
A Doctor in applied Kinesiology called Dr Callahan tried to investigate ways of helping his patients with anxiety and phobias. Because there is an acupuncture point located beneath the eye for the stomach meridian he asked her to tap this point thinking that it would aid her in balancing the disturbance in her stomach. EFT draws on theories of acupuncture, neuro-linguistic programming, thought field therapy and energy medicine. Because EFT can be used to treat negative associations and emotions related to tinnitus it is a remarkably effective tool. You will know because it should feel slightly uncomfortable and different from the surrounding area. To analyze a possible association of the degree of hearing loss with the severity of tinnitus, we have performed a retrospective study using admission data on 531 patients suffering from chronic tinnitus.
This perception can be induced by various dysfunctions on several levels of the peripheral or central auditory pathway [1].
According to OSHA, if you work an eight-hour shift and are repeatedly exposed to 85 decibels of noise, you’re damaging your hearing. According to the World Health Organization, noise induced hearing loss is the world’s most preventable occupational injury. These devices display a green light when the noise level is at a safe 85 decibels or fewer. In response to NIHL in NT animals we find a significant general reduction in overall cortical activity and spectral power as well as changes in all ABR wave amplitudes as a function of loudness.
Hence a significant amount of data from both human (6, 7) and animal studies (8–12) on the plastic changes occurring in the involved neuronal networks during tinnitus development is available, a number of different and in part controversial neurobiological models trying to explain the phenomenon do exist.
We concluded that animals with low overall neuronal activity in the auditory system might have a predisposition for the development of tinnitus early after noise trauma while animals with higher neuronal activity did not develop such a percept within the time of observation.
According to this model, the high overall AC activity of NT animals before the trauma is a prerequisite for the activation of this hypothetical global inhibition. The use and care of animals was approved by the state of Bavaria (Regierungspräsidium Mittelfranken, Ansbach, Germany). All methods used in this paper (except the LFP recordings) have been described previously (17) but still will be explained in detail here for better intelligibility.
Second, ABR measurements of the healthy animals were performed to obtain individual audiograms under anesthesia and the far field responses of the auditory pathway in the brainstem up to the inferior colliculus (IC).
For obtaining the behavioral hearing thresholds we used a PPI of ASR paradigm in all animals. This book also provides general information on implementing a hearing loss prevention program. Deaf to the Danger contains three, short scenarios (warehouse, sawmill, and packaging plant) that demonstrate just some of the dangers associated with wearing earbuds on the job. Whilst she carried on talking about her phobia of water she tapped the pressure point under her eye. We have found that 83% of our tinnitus patients had a high frequency hearing loss corresponding to a noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL).
Regardless of the original cause, all patients complain of hearing a tinnitus tone on either one (unilateral) or both sides (bilateral) of the head or ears.
When noise exceeds 85 decibels, the device displays a red light that signals you should take precautions to protect your hearing. In contrast, T-animals show no significant change in overall cortical activity as assessed by root mean square analysis of LFP amplitudes, but a specific increase in LFP spectral power and in the amplitude of ABR wave V reflecting activity in the inferior colliculus (IC).
Furthermore, within a week after the acoustic trauma T-animals showed increased activity in auditory cortical neurons representing the tinnitus frequencies, whereas NT animals exhibited decreased activity at moderate sound intensities at that point in time. We suggest that a certain dynamic range for unspecific gain reduction across the whole AC is needed to successfully counteract the response gain increase that is associated with tinnitus development. The authors declare that there is no conflict of interests regarding the publication of this paper.
After these measurements surgery for implantation of the head holder and the recording chamber over the left AC was performed and electrophysiological single electrode recordings in primary AC field AI of the healthy anesthetized animal were carried out on two to three sessions within 1 week after the surgery.
We startled the animals with 90 dB SPL pure tones (6 ms length including 2 ms rise and fall ramps) ranging from 0.5 to 16 kHz in a pseudo-randomized order in octave steps. 0) and no changes in PPI effect were found comparing pre (blue) and post trauma (red) data by t-tests.
The recordings were identical to those described in the earlier report (17) allowing us to additionally analyze single unit responses within AC. This tapping can help to bring you down from your tinnitus induced stress response, reduce anxiety and help you relax. Not only did this relieve the fearful feeling in her stomach but also cured her of her water phobia. Depending on the case, tinnitus tone may have low, medium or high frequency and be either relatively quiet (0–3 dB), going up to relatively loud (more than 16 dB). If the overall neuronal activity in AC is already low before the trauma, as in the case of T-animals, this activity may not be reduced further and tinnitus develops because of un-resisted response gain increase in those regions of AC representing the tinnitus percept.
Acoustic trauma (2 kHz, 115 dB SPL, 75 min) under deep anesthesia was used to induce a mild NIHL (evaluated by ABR analysis directly after the trauma and PPI audiogram after 1 week) and a persistent tinnitus percept in the majority of the animals (26 of 35 animals, 74%; evaluated by PPI measurement one week after trauma). The same pure tones were used as pre-stimulus probes ranging from 0 to 50 dB SPL in 10 dB steps 100 ms before the startle stimulus.
In both cases, a silent 15 ms gap within the noise (white or band pass) 100 ms before the startle stimulus served as pre-pulse. The right panel gives the comparison of time of recording averaged over all frequencies as part of the 2-factorial ANOVA. From here on a new system of tapping pressure points whilst repeating key phrases out loud was born called TFT. Interestingly, patients suffering from decompensated chronic tinnitus had a greater degree of hearing loss than the patients with compensated form of tinnitus. Tinnitus may take acute (up to 3 months), sub-acute (4–12 months) or a chronic turn (longer than a year). What remains an open question in our model is the source of the hypothetical global inhibition, whether it is generated intra-cortically (within AC), sub-cortically or even in higher cortical or limbic structures.
Within the first week after the trauma all electrophysiological recordings in AC were performed in two to three recording sessions.
The rationale of these paradigms is that an animal that perceives a tinnitus would be impaired in gap detection because it would hear its own tinnitus within the silent gap [cf.
Stimulation was pseudo-randomized using a fixed list of all combinations of stimulus frequencies and sound pressure levels (0–90 dB SPL in 5 dB steps). In addition, we demonstrate that the degree of hearing loss positively correlates with the two subscales (“intrusiveness” and “auditory perceptional difficulties”) of the Tinnitus Questionnaire. Regarding the level of disturbance, tinnitus can be classified as compensated (low-level distress) or decompensated (high-level distress) [2]. A modified version of tinnitus retraining therapy: observing long-term outcome and predictors. All experiments were carried out in an IAC (Industrial Acoustics Company GmbH, Niederkrüchten, Germany) acoustic chamber on a TMC (Technical Manufacturing Corporation, Peabody, MA, USA) low-vibration table.
For sound generation, the frequency response function of the speaker was calibrated to produce an output spectrum that was flat within ±1 dB measured within the acrylic tube.
Note that we did not find any significant change over time and no interaction of the two predictors in these animals.
To obtain ABR-based audiograms the mean ABR wave amplitudes were compared to the mean amplitude 200–100 ms before the stimulus (baseline).
Our retrospective study provides indirect evidence supporting the hypothesis that the degree of noise-induced hearing loss influences the severity of tinnitus. The major problem in patients with decompensated tinnitus is sleep interference, because the tinnitus tone keeps the patients awake.
The data obtained were checked by eye via a custom-made Matlab program, trials in which the animals moved within 100 ms before the startle stimulus were discarded; in the valid trials only peak-to-peak amplitudes of responses within the first 50 ms after startle stimulus onset were used for further analysis. Animals were again ketamine-xylazine anesthetized, placed on a 37°C warm heating pad and fixated via the aluminum head-post. Other diseases that follow include depression, a variety of phobias, anxiety disorders, problems with concentration and in extreme cases—suicide.
Finally, the exact relations between cochlear damage, hearing impairment, and tinnitus development are still elusive. The evaluation was performed independently by the principal investigator and a technical assistant, who was blind to the state of the animal.
Consequently, when using a gap as pre-pulse, animals with tinnitus should produce smaller PPI of ASR than animals without tinnitus (cf. For additional analysis the root mean square (RMS) value of the ABR signal was calculated from 1 to 5 ms after stimulus onset and single waves of the ABR responses representing the different levels within the brainstem (25) were detected by a custom-made Matlab program at 70 dB SPL for each stimulation frequency. Approximately 30 per 100 adults experience tinnitus, whereas about 1–5 persons per 100 suffer from tinnitus and seek medical help [3,4].
We made sure that the animals were always (pre and post trauma = trauma status) responding to the 90 dB SPL startle stimulus (cf. In humans, it is known that the majority of tinnitus percepts (around 70%) exhibit a pure tone-like character while the remaining part consists of ringing tones, noises or even more complex sounds (22).
The recorded LFPs were analyzed with custom-made Matlab programs and statistically evaluated with Statistica.
In the Western world, tinnitus has a big economic impact [5].The onset of tinnitus can have various basis such as neurologic, traumatic, infectious or drug-related [6], however, the major cause of tinnitus is a hearing loss [5].


We used the two different paradigms to determine possible tinnitus percepts in the animals because the exact nature of these percepts is unknown. Three response measures were evaluated, first, the amplitude and timing of the first negative peak (N1) and the second positive peak (P2) waves of the recorded data (reflecting mainly the slower extralemniscal and intracortical input [for review see Ref. Hearing loss is usually caused by the aging process (presbycusis) or by the overexposure to noise (noise-induced hearing loss, NIHL).
For validation of the PPI effect of the pre-stimuli we performed 1-factorial ANOVAs for the valid response amplitudes dependent on the pre-stimulus intensity for each frequency and trauma status separately for each individual animal. With the pure tone stimulus over a white noise and the click stimulus over band pass filtered noise we aimed to cover as many different percepts as possible. Occupational noise, together with environmental noise pollution, are two major factors contributing to the NIHL [7]. The mean responses before and after trauma of the six animals used for electrophysiological recordings in AC are given in Figure S1 in Supplementary Material. If a tinnitus is detected, the different tone frequencies and noise spectra used should give a rough estimate of the spectral content of the tinnitus percept. Responses in this threshold paradigm were fitted with a sigmoidal Boltzmann function for each frequency, trauma status, and animal separately. Each frequency and gap-condition was repeated 15 times and each test was performed before and after the acoustic trauma. These, and a lot of other data, strongly indicate coexistence of both hearing dysfunctions.
Hearing thresholds were defined as the sound level at the inflection point of the Boltzmann function for each frequency before and after trauma (18). Again the data obtained were checked by eye by the same two experimenters as above via a custom-made Matlab program. Based on the above data we put forward a hypothesis that the degree of hearing loss could negatively influence the severity of tinnitus.To test our hypothesis we used a retrospective study using data acquired from 531 tinnitus patients. Trials in which the animals moved within 100 ms before the startle stimulus were discarded; in the valid trials only peak-to-peak amplitudes of responses within the first 50 ms after startle stimulus onset were used for further analysis (17). This data were randomly collected on the admission of patients who reported to the day ward of Tinnitus Center at the Charite - Universitatsmedizin in Berlin between January 2008 and March 2010. This approach allowed the determination of a possible frequency-specific tinnitus-related behavior at one octave precision.
After the trauma only some animals showed an undisturbed gap-effect at all frequencies tested while other animals showed no gap-effect at some but not all frequencies (cf.
Figure 1), which gave a first hint of a possible tinnitus percept but was not yet used as the final classification of the animals in the tinnitus or NT group (cf.
ParticipantsWe have obtained the data from 531 tinnitus patients (sub-acute and chronic) admitted to a 7-day multimodal tinnitus therapy. To avoid possible effects of the acoustic trauma on different stimulation frequencies all startle response data were normalized to minimize variance of the response amplitudes. Normalization was performed as described earlier (17, 23); briefly, we divided each amplitude by the corresponding median amplitude of the 90 dB SPL only condition (which reflects the full startle response of the animal for the loudest condition at each specific frequency, 0 dB SPL pre-stimulus intensity Figure S1 in Supplementary Material).
Thus we attempted to control for differences in the startle amplitudes resulting from the hearing loss at the trauma frequency. This normalization also guarantees that the reduced ASR response after acoustic trauma is not due to hearing loss but likely due to a tinnitus percept (23). Significant positive values for PPI change reflect impaired PPI and therefore indicate the development of a tinnitus percept. In addition, tinnitus frequency (kHz) and tinnitus loudness (dB HL) were matched for each patient. Only such animals were therefore classified as probably perceiving a tinnitus (T group) that showed at least one impaired frequency after the trauma independent of the affected frequency itself.
As it turned out, in all cases where a tinnitus was detected according to one of the two gap-ASR paradigms used, the second gap-ASR paradigm was also positive for tinnitus. Psychometry (Tinnitus Questionnaire)Tinnitus-related distress was assessed using validated standard German version of the tinnitus questionnaire (TQ). Influence of environmental factors on the evolution of industrial noise-induced hearing loss. The TQ is composed of 52 items allocated to six scales: emotional distress, cognitive distress, intrusiveness, auditory perceptual difficulties, sleep disturbances and somatic complaints [12].
Animals without such a significant increase in PPI change were classified as NT perceiving animals (NT group).
The severity level of tinnitus was assigned as “compensated” (low-level distress) with TQ score ? 46 points and “decompensated” (high-level distress) with TQ score > 46 points. It became apparent that animals classified as T or NT based on these behavioral measures also differed in neurophysiological response measures (ABR and AC responses; cf. Spearman's rank correlation was used to test the statistical relationship between hearing loss and tinnitus parameters or tinnitus severity.
While the tests used here may only detect acute tinnitus, exemplary animals were re-tested in regular intervals for up to 16 weeks and did not show any changes in tinnitus frequencies.
Based on these results we think that the classification of NT and T-animals is not only valid in acute but also in the chronic state of the disease. Predominant Number of Patients with Chronic Tinnitus Has a Hearing LossOf all 531 tinnitus patients tested, 441 (83%; 220 men and 221 women) had a hearing loss in the upper frequencies (Figure 1), corresponding to a pattern found in the NIHL [13].
Assessing audiological, pathophysiological and psychological variables in tinnitus patients with or without hearing loss.
There were no significant differences in the hearing loss between the left and the right ear and between male and female patients in this group.
The mean age of tinnitus patients with NIHL-like audiogram was 50 years (SD = 13, min 16, max 79), with patients most frequently ranging between 40–60 years of age. Tinnitus Characteristics in Patients with Hearing LossOf 441 tinnitus patients with NIHL-like audiogram, 319 patients had pure tone tinnitus whereas 122 patients had noise tinnitus.
The values did not differ between female and male patients except for the subscale “somatic complaints” with woman having significantly greater scores than the male patients (Table 1). Of the 441 patients, 335 patients suffered from compensated tinnitus (TQ ? 46 points) and 106 patients suffered from decompensated tinnitus (TQ > 46 points). 3.4 The Degree of Hearing Loss Correlates with Some of the Psychometric Parameters Measured by TQHearing loss was of significantly higher degree in patients with decompensated tinnitus than in patients with compensated tinnitus (Figure 3). This means that tinnitus patients with greater hearing loss experience higher tinnitus-related distress. We found no correlation between tinnitus frequency or loudness and distress caused by tinnitus. Influence of Age on the Psychometric ScoresOur recent study [14] revealed that the age of patients may influence their TQ values.
Consequently, in the present study, we have subdivided the patients into three age groups and analyzed their TQ scores as a function of age. Influence of Tinnitus Lateralization on the Psychometric ScoresWe compared the tinnitus-related distress between the patients with left-sided, right-sided and bilateral tinnitus. DiscussionOur present work was aimed at analyzing the association between noise, the grade of the noise-induced hearing loss and the severity of tinnitus. Our results partially corroborate the findings of others by demonstrating a strong bond between the noise-induced hearing loss and tinnitus [10]. In fact, we have shown that 83% of patients with chronic and sub-acute forms of tinnitus have a high-frequency hearing loss, which is a substantially higher percentage than the 57% reported by Savastano or the 63% reported by Martines et al.
The sample size in all studies was roughly similar, as were the age and gender distribution. However, there was a major difference in the duration of tinnitus between our and the other studies. In the Savastano study, 49% of tinnitus patients had suffered from tinnitus for a time shorter than one year – a group classified as acute and sub-acute tinnitus. Based on the above evidence, one is tempted to cautiously speculate that the tinnitus associated with hearing loss has a greater chance of chronification than the tinnitus without hearing loss. In the other study, Attias and colleagues have indentified a subgroup of patients with tinnitus, who were actively looking for a remedy. Our study gives a base for the explanation of how the degree of noise-induced hearing loss indirectly affects the severity of tinnitus by influencing negatively the loudness of tinnitus.
In agreement with this, the degree of hearing loss correlated positively with two subscales (“intrusiveness” and “auditory perceptional difficulties”) of the Tinnitus Questionnaire. These particular items of TQ regard the ability to communicate, which is an integral part of the quality of life. With the increased distress of tinnitus, patients withdraw from their normal social life and avoid contacts with others, consistent with the decompensated form of tinnitus.
Interestingly, we found that the patients suffering with decompensated tinnitus had a greater degree of hearing loss than the patients with compensated tinnitus.Noise pollution and occupational noise were demonstrated to induce asymmetric hearing loss, with the left side being affected more than the right one [13].
Although our analyses demonstrated no statistically significant differences in the hearing loss between the left and the right sides, we found that left-sided tinnitus is more distressing than the right-sided one. Moreover, patients with the left-sided tinnitus had more complaints in the somatic subscale than the right-sided tinnitus patients. This could be attributed to neuroanatomic differences between the left and right parts of the auditory system.Noise—either occupational or environmental noise pollution—is a major preventable cause of the hearing loss and therefore of chronic tinnitus. The consequences of noise exposure last for life, as the sensory auditory epithelium never regenerates.
The price to pay for the noise exposure includes not only a limited ability to hear but also increased chance to develop chronic decompensated tinnitus, which separates the affected persons from normal social activities and significantly decreases the quality of life.
ConclusionsOur study demonstrates that the chain of events started by overexposure to noise not only induces the hearing loss but also tinnitus with its co-morbidities, finally resulting in a decreased quality of life.



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