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Living with tinnitus. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy can help

It can be hard to live with the ringing, humming, or roaring sound in your ear from tinnitus. However, researched therapy approaches, such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), help alleviate emotions you experience with your condition. It can support you during your recovery and help you manage symptoms so you can get back to living your best life.

What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)?

CBT is a form of talk therapy. With a psychotherapist or therapist, you learn management skills for stressful situations. It helps you identify inaccurate or negative thinking patterns and work through them so that you can respond to challenging situations more effectively.

How Does CBT Help You Cope with Tinnitus?

Although not a cure for tinnitus, CBT can significantly improve your quality of life by providing you with coping tools for your symptoms. Here are three ways CBT can help:

1. Cognitive Skills

Negative thought patterns or assumptions, like worrying your condition will worsen, can feed into feelings of fear and despair. CBT helps you approach the situation from another perspective. For example, did you know habituation exists where your brain can learn to naturally screen tinnitus out? Reminding yourself of the facts around recovery can help keep calm. You can cope with symptoms better as your brain learns to habituate.

2. Acceptance and Mindfulness

Although you can’t control the sounds or sensations from tinnitus, you can learn to regain a sense of control in your life and attention. CBT helps you accept your moment-to-moment situation, relax, and focus on the present moment. By practising mindfulness, you create some space between an unwanted situation and how you react to it. Adopting this makes it easier to tolerate tinnitus and continue with your day-to-day activities.

3. Gradual Desensitisation

CBT can help you soften the symptoms and gradually desensitise against tinnitus through self-guided sound enrichment practices and exposure therapy. Exposure allows your brain to understand that tinnitus sounds and sensations are not dangerous. Instead, they are meaningless stimulation you can safely ignore. Over time you will handle situations easier, despite the tinnitus, and improve your confidence and courage to rejoin life.

Final Thoughts

To reduce the disruptions tinnitus brings to your lifestyle, consider the benefits of CBT. You can learn ways to screen out the sounds and continue to enjoy your life. If you have questions or want additional advice on CBT for your tinnitus, contact us at Pindrop Hearing today

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