Has Anyone Gotten Significant Relief from a Hearing Aid Tinnitus Therapy Signal?

Discussion in 'Support' started by three4rd, Dec 31, 2016.

    1. three4rd
      Thinking

      three4rd Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/19/16
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      probably long-term sound exposure and hearing loss
      Hi,

      I got hearing aids recently because my tinnitus (as told to me by my audiologist) is basically associated with hearing loss.

      I have yet to accede to the explanation that there is little to be done and will probably consult with an otologist as recommended by my primary ENT.

      Perhaps nothing to be gained but I need to do it for peace of mind. Anyway, back to the purpose of the thread.

      One of the programs I have with the aid is a tinnitus therapy feature that uses ocean wave sounds. I'm told that it will help the brain to accommodate to the tinnitus pitch. I've been playing this program alot and quite frankly thus far I am a bit skeptical as to whether it will work as intended. I hear the ocean wave background sound, which is very pleasant and all, but I still hear the tinnitus pitch very well along with it.

      Then, upon turning off the therapy signal, it actually exacerbates the perceived volume of the tinnitus pitch.

      Somehow this seems counterproductive to the intended benefit.

      Anyone else have an aid (or even for that matter just a sound therapy generator) and can speak to its benefits? If so, please share.

      Thanks,
      Keith
       
      • Like Like x 1
    2. Michael B
      Supportive

      Michael B Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Earbuds
      I too use my hearing aid (with Bluetooth) to help me with my tinnitus but not as a therapy as much as a masker. After reviewing any number of sounds, only one, that of crickets, appear to mask my tinnitus sufficiently due to my tinnitus pitch. After six months of using the hearing aid in this way, I can honestly say that I don't know what I'd do without it.
       
    3. GregCA
      Jaded

      GregCA Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Otosclerosis
      Which brand/model of hearing aid is that?
       
    4. JasonP
      No Mood

      JasonP Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      6/2006
      I had some relief as a masker but some of mine is unmaskable. When you turn it back down, shortly thereafter it can make it temporarily more loud
       
    5. PaulBe

      PaulBe Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Cairns
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Probably sound, though never proven
      My wallet was relieved of two grand, but...no.
       
    6. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      three4rd
      Thinking

      three4rd Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/19/16
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      probably long-term sound exposure and hearing loss
      Siemens Pure 7 px. Thanks to all for the replies...
       
    7. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      three4rd
      Thinking

      three4rd Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/19/16
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      probably long-term sound exposure and hearing loss
      A new development with the hearing aids. This probably makes absolutely no sense, but over the past few days in experimenting with NOT wearing the aids, I've found that I am less aware of the tinnitus pitch when I am not wearing them. Without the aids, the pitch is perceived as being more of a less pronounced, softer, and muted kind of sound (for lack of a more technical description) than a clear, pronounced individual pitch that I notice when wearing the aids. Given that the aids are amplifying my hearing loss in the higher frequencies, is it possible that for whatever reason my tinnitus pitch is being increasingly heard as an external stimuli and thus the hearing aids are amplifying the higher frequency of it thereby making me more aware of it rather than less, which would seem to be the whole point of using them? I am fairly certain the aids made the tinnitus less noticeable for the first 2 weeks or so, but now having tried not wearing them more often the past few days, I can definitely notice a difference - better without. Any thoughts on this? I'm wondering...what is the point of keeping the aids if they work contrary to what I had hoped for? My hearing is borderline as far as even needing aids, so I could either way with the decision as to whether or not to keep them. Thanks for any input...
       
    8. glynis
      Feminine

      glynis Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Location:
      England,
      Tinnitus Since:
      2004
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Meniere's Disease
      Always set your masker aid sound below your tinnitus.
      Your brain will work hard pick up your lower wave sound and learn your brain not to focus on your tinnitus.
      When that has happened and your brain has built up its natural filter what will happen is you can still hear your tinnitus but you won't be botherd by the sound at all and then you can decide to wear them or not depending on your hearing and emotional reaction to Tinnitus....lots of love glynis
       
    9. JasonP
      No Mood

      JasonP Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      6/2006
      That hearing aide sounds like the Siemens/Signia Pure Primax 7px you are talking about is one I tried and really enjoyed. If I had fully maskable tinnitus I am sure it would have helped me tremendously. It still helped some. The 7px is top of the line I think and unlike most hearing aides can be programmed out to 12khz instead of 8khz. To get the best out of the hearing aide and probably reduce the ringing noticibility further, you need what is called an extended audiogram (goes beyond 8khz). Find a place that does them and bring the extended audiogram back to the audiologist for a reprogramming. That is my advice :)
       
    10. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      three4rd
      Thinking

      three4rd Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/19/16
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      probably long-term sound exposure and hearing loss
      Hey JasonP...thanks for that interesting bit of information. I was actually planning on going to a different ENT for a 2nd opinion based on some other things I've been told by an audiologist who works at this other office. The things you mentioned about taking the aids up to beyond 8Khz makes sense. So I take it you are advising to continue with using the aids though?

      Glynis...thanks for your thoughts as well. Likewise, are you indicating that I should continue to wear the aids? The tinnitus therapy signal is definitely of a lower volume than the tinnitus pitch, but I'm concerned about what JasonP mentioned regarding possibly the use of higher frequencies. My current audiologist said that the ocean waves signal does indeed sweep up into the higher frequencies, but I remain uncertain of that. If it does, I'm surely not hearing it.

      Regards,
      Keith
       
    11. glynis
      Feminine

      glynis Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Location:
      England,
      Tinnitus Since:
      2004
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Meniere's Disease
      As long as your masker is below your tinnitus you should be fine.
      I have white noise generators and also duel purpose hearing aids that play white noise with amplification.

      Can you play white or pink noise through them or like the waves more ?...lots of love glynis
       
    12. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      three4rd
      Thinking

      three4rd Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/19/16
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      probably long-term sound exposure and hearing loss
      Only one program was still available on my hearing aid so we used it to add a tinnitus signal. Yes...the options included white or pink noise but I didn't care for those as much and also the doctor recommended the ocean sounds as being more effective. I remain unconvinced about all of this stuff yet and really need another opinion. If I'm told the same thing by another ENT - the one that has an Otologist on the staff - then I'll at least be more content in the knowledge that my present course of action is the right (and perhaps only) one. I'd still like to have an MRI done to rule out anything else that might be going on. The doctor in the other office I'm thinking of going to indicated that when patients come to them with a sudden onset of tinnitus in only one ear, it raises a bit of a red flag and that sometimes there are other neurological issues causing the tinnitus. Worth exploring I think.
       
    13. JasonP
      No Mood

      JasonP Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      6/2006
      Yes continue with the aides and correct for loss if the ringing is between 8 and 12khz. Download the app if you have a smartphone. Have the audiologist program them to allow you to have a nice range of masking which you can raise or lower on the rocker switches on the aides. Maybe get them to give you a slight amplification in the frequency where your T is located.
       
    14. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      three4rd
      Thinking

      three4rd Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/19/16
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      probably long-term sound exposure and hearing loss
      JasonP,

      Interesting. Are you referring to the ability to actually change the frequency range of the masking sound (or what I have been referring to as therapy signal) on the aid itself? I know my audiologist said he programmed the aids for my hearing loss...said it is set to a 48-band equalizer. But other than programming in the therapy signal (which I can only turn on or off) I have no control over anything relative to what frequencies the aids are either set to or the ability to change any frequency output for a masking or therapy signal. What app are you referring to? I do have the one that allows me to set bass/treble, balance, and spatial configuration (although at my last visit that has now been put on the right rocker switch). My left rocker switch is to change the programs and volume - nothing else. It sounds like you're talking about greater level of control than I have. I'd like to find out more about what you are referring to.

      Also, I'm still a bit confused about what this "correcting for loss" is still all about. My primary ENT seemed to suggest that the whole thing with tinnitus is that it involves the brain trying to cope with the missing frequencies that are part of the hearing loss. I get that. But then my doctor also said that if the missing frequencies are supplied it can greatly reduce or eliminate the tinnitus. I sort of think I've been led down the path a bit with that statement. So exactly what is the goal here? Is it as simple as using a masking sound to divert one's brain away from the T pitch thereby "habituating" to the T and rendering it significantly less noticeable, OR is there something much more technical at play here wherein supplying those frequencies that are missing from my hearing actually (truly) reduces the T pitch? I'm so new at this and have heard so many things from so many different people that I'm not sure what I should be aiming to accomplish.

      I am fairly certain of one thing...the therapy signal I have been listening to does not overlap with the frequency of my T pitch. I'd bet on it, and yet my audiologist said the ocean wave sound sweeps across a large part of the frequency range. I don't think it goes up high enough though. I would think I should be able to tell when some overlap has occurred - shouldn't the tinnitus pitch be perceived as sort of disappearing in the wake of an effective masking sound?
       

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