High Ringing In Ears
Coping with Quiet Situations
In contrast to the difficulty with noisy situations, some people avoid quiet places because these situations make the tinnitus seem more intrusive and reminds them that they have lost the pleasure of "silence." This loss is experienced quite acutely by some people. Thus, participation in pleasant activities that normally take place in quiet areas may be less enjoyable because of the tinnitus. The attention control and imagery training techniques may be of particular assistance to people with this kind of difficulty. You can begin by identifying the quiet situations that you either avoid or would prefer to avoid.
Return to attentional control and imagery training. You might practice these techniques in a succession of quieter situations at home. Perhaps place some piece of equipment that makes a noise in the room while you practice the attention control and relaxation skills, and then lower the volume a little further each time you practice the techniques. The next step might involve imagining being in a range of quiet situations, choosing some situations that are intrinsically very pleasant. When you feel comfortable with your progress, you might try to use the techniques in real-life quiet situations.
Impact on Daily Activities and Lifestyle
The potential impact of tinnitus on your daily activities and lifestyle may be overcome by using strategies to increase your participation in pleasant activities and making modifications to certain areas of your lifestyle. Feelings of frustration and interpersonal problems might also arise because you feel that other people (e.g., your spouse, partner, friends, or family members) cannot appreciate what it is like to experience tinnitus. If this is the case. it might be very useful to suggest that other significant people in your life read this blog. The contents of this blog might help the people in your life to gain a greater understanding of some of the problems that you might be experiencing.
We have identified several specific areas of concern to some people who experience tinnitus, and have provided further suggestions about dealing with these issues. For some of these problems, we suggest that you obtain more specialist assistance. For other problems, such as dealing with loud or quiet situations, the suggestions provided here may help you overcome the problem. You might also consider making contact with one of the tinnitus self-help associations that exist in many parts of the world.
We realize that there are quite a number of different ways in which tinnitus affects people. In this blog we have provided numerous suggestions about the ways in which these problems can be overcome. As you can see, learning to live with the tinnitus is possible if you take control of the tinnitus instead of letting the tinnitus take control of you. We have described a large number of approaches to help you take control.
Our clinical experience has taught us that people vary widely in their reactions to the different approaches. Some people respond very well to some ideas, such as the relaxation training or the attention control techniques, and other people find the thought management (cognitive) strategies to be very useful. On numerous occasions we have found that people will react very positively to one seemingly simple suggestion, taking a single idea that then makes a real difference to their lives.
Perhaps you have read this blog from post to post and have gained the general impression that you can do something but you are not sure exactly what to do now! We suggest that you re-read the blog. Over a period of several weeks, taking time to do the exercises in a systematic fashion. Try to experiment with all the ideas in the blog, even the ones that you feel are less likely to be helpful, and actually give the ideas a trial period. It may be helpful to know that many of the ideas contained in the blog have been developed with people, just like you, who experience tinnitus.
We are indebted to the many individuals who have shared their experiences of tinnitus with us over the years. Like many of those people, hope that you also find the suggestions to be valuable in allowing you to live a fulfilling life, despite your tinnitus. As one person in our group commented, "I now think of the tinnitus as part of me, and that's O.K. – I know how I can take control!" To learn more, you can check out High Ringing In Ears.