Using Flexible Sound Therapy for Tinnitus

November 1, 2023
3 min
Michael Piskosz
Dr. Fabrice Bardy


A great way of learning to ‘tune out’ from tinnitus is using sound therapy. Many people find that sound therapy is an effective tool for managing their tinnitus every day. While it may sound complicated or expensive, sound therapy is a term for using different sounds to help take your attention away from your tinnitus. 

The MindEar app sound library offers a variety of different soundscape to use for flexible sound therapy and help manage tinnitus

Sound therapy offers several benefits to cope with tinnitus:

  1. Diminishing Awareness: By introducing external sounds, sound therapy helps your brain to gradually become less aware of the tinnitus, making it less bothersome.
  2. Attention Redirection: It can effectively shifts your attention from the tinnitus to other sounds, providing a soothing distraction.
  3. Background Blending: Similar to how we unconsciously tune out routine background noises, sound therapy assists in relegating the tinnitus sounds to the back of your auditory perception.
  4. Habituation Assistance: Over time, this therapy can train your brain to 'habituate' to the tinnitus sound, meaning that it will perceive the sound as less intrusive or distressing.
  5. Promoting Relaxation: Additionally, sound therapy can be a conduit for relaxation, alleviating the stress and anxiety often associated with tinnitus.

Habituation is the process by which we become used to something. When we habituate to tinnitus, we become less annoyed, frustrated, and bothered by the tinnitus and learn to interpret it as just another noise to blend into the background. 

Over the years, sound therapy has typically been introduced using hearing aids, sound generators, or masking devices. Many people have also used mundane household items, like a fan, the TV, or the radio to introduce background noise to help ‘drown out’ their tinnitus. Although these devices and techniques have helped many people, with the advancements in audio technology over the years, there are many other ways to introduce sound therapy into your daily routine that offer a lot more flexibility and convenience. 

Flexible ways of delivering sound therapy are:

  1. Headphones/Earbuds: Headphones and ear buds are a great way to deliver sound therapy on a daily basis. These products allow you to stream your favorite sounds and music, and provide the convenience of portability, so you can them wherever you go. Another benefit of these is that only you can hear the sound, reducing the chance of disturbing others close by.
  2. Bluetooth Speakers: Bluetooth speakers allow you to stream your favorite sounds and music into any space, such as your bedroom or kitchen. These can be used to provide background noise during the day or when you’re trying to fall asleep. Other people will be able to hear what you are streaming, so it’s important to be considerate of others who may be sharing the space with you.
  3. Smartphone: Your smartphone has speakers and can also deliver any sound therapy you choose. If you find yourself without your headphones, earbuds, or Bluetooth speaker, you can use your smartphone to help. Other people will be able to hear what you are streaming, so it’s important to be considerate of others who may be sharing the space with you.
  4. Sound Machines: Sound machines offer pre-recorded sounds that you can use to provide background noise during the day or when you’re trying to fall asleep. Most sound machines do not offer Bluetooth technology, so they are more limited than Bluetooth speakers. Sound machines can be very helpful for children, who may not have a smartphone of their own yet.

Sound Therapy and Counseling: A Synergistic Approach to Tinnitus Treatment

Importantly, the effectiveness of tinnitus treatment is significantly enhanced when sound therapy is paired with counseling, as revealed by a 2009 study by Mckenna et al. This research reveals that integrating counseling with sound therapy often yields more substantial improvements than sound therapy in isolation. This underscores the vital role of mental and emotional well-being in managing tinnitus. The combined approach appears to be more effective, primarily because it addresses the psychological factors underlying tinnitus. If you are seeking relief from tinnitus, this insight is pivotal, advocating for a holistic treatment strategy that encompasses both sound therapy and psychological counseling for optimal results.

If you're seeking relief from tinnitus, this discovery is crucial. It suggests that a holistic treatment plan, which includes both sound therapy and psychological counseling, can lead to optimal outcomes. To explore this approach further and understand how it can benefit you, consider booking a complimentary 15-minute consultation with a tinnitus coach at MindEar Tinnitus Consultation. This consultation could be your first step towards a more effective and comprehensive tinnitus treatment strategy.

Sound Therapy with Precision with the MindEar App

At MindEar, we're dedicated to offering scientifically-supported solutions tailored to effectively manage your tinnitus. In the MindEar app you will find an extensive library of soundscapes. Each soundscape is adjustable, empowering you to discover the sound therapy that resonates best with your needs. What sets our app apart is the ability to fine-tune your preferred soundscape. You can adjust various elements of the soundscape, including different frequencies and sound patterns, allowing for a personalized auditory experience.

But our support doesn't stop at sound therapy. MindEar also incorporates cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and mindfulness techniques within the app. These tools are designed to help you take control of your tinnitus, equipping you with strategies to live your life without the constant awareness of your condition. Join us on your journey to tinnitus management with MindEar, where we guide you towards a life of greater comfort and control over your symptoms.

Download the MindEar app and unlock immediate access to an extensive sound therapy library tailored for tinnitus relief.

Mckenna, L., & Irwin, R. (2008). Sound therapy for tinnitus–sacred cow or idol worship?: An investigation of the evidence. Audiological Medicine, 6(1), 16-24.

How MindEar can help you in your tinnitus journey

MindEar offers a range of scientifically-backed solutions that can help you manage your tinnitus symptoms effectively. In the MindEar app you will find a soundscape library offering a variety of adjustable soundscapes to help you find the sound sound therapy that works best for you. You can also talk to a tinnitus expert to help determine if a sound masker is right for you. In addition, cognitive behavioral therapy and mindfulness techniques are also accessible to provide you with the tools to take control of your condition so that you can live a life without noticing it. MindEar is here to guide you on that journey.

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