Tinnitus Sufferers May Benefit from Hearing Aids
Open hearing aids can potentially relieve the discomfort of the millions of people who suffer daily from ringing in their ears, according to data from Denmark.
Each year, millions of people are added to the growing group of tinnitus sufferers. An American study estimated that 40-50 million Americans suffer from some degree of the distressing noises in the ear associated with tinnitus.
A so-called open hearing aid can mask the uncomfortable noises affecting tinnitus patients. So far, 150 patients have tried the new type of hearing aids and 95 percent of them said that it helped alleviate the symptoms.
”The knowledge that you can mask tinnitus with a hearing aid is actually not new. But until now the problem has been that previous hearing aids closed off the ear entirely and left the patient with a strange sense of a hollow resound amplifying chewing sounds and, at times, even the tinnitus. The new type of hearing aid is so thin that this sensation is eliminated while still allowing sounds from the outside to pass into the ear,” explained Preben Skellgaard of the county of Sønderjylland Center for Aids and Communication to the Danish Berlingske Tidende daily newspaper.
A major research effort is underway to test various types of open hearing aids.
Tinnitus greatly affects the quality of life. The breakthrough in Denmark brings new hope of future relief for tinnitus patients everywhere.
Adapted from: www.hear-it.org, “Hearing Aids Benefit Tinnitus Patients.”
Source: www.berlingske.dk April 3, 2006 and www.chk-sja.dk