How Does Sound Therapy Work?
A question I’m frequently asked is does sound therapy actually work? I think most people have seen a doctor or chiropractor, and may well have been offered something to alleviate the symptoms of their tinnitus, and maybe sleep better at night too. Sound therapy is a popular complementary treatment which helps to mask the noise which can be produced by tinnitus. Sound therapy can be used alone, to aid you to relax during the day, or in conjunction with a more extensive programme to assist you habituate to the condition naturally.
It will not cure you, but most people find it very helpful to help to live with the condition as though they had complete control over the sounds they heard. Most people report that sounds slightly louder than normal don’t bother them directly, but some might find that sounds louder than they would perceive normally cause feelings of mild discomfort, a feeling which they then associate with the perceived intensity of the sound. This helps to explain why some people might get tinnitus whilst they are watching television, and why the sounds might seem louder at an outdoor festival. Because the brain perceives the sounds as a nuisance, rather than an actual attack, they lose control and the result is an experience which is both distressing and potentially debilitating.
For some people, this type of therapy will actually help them to gain complete control of their environment and life. They will no longer suffer any annoying outside noise which disturbs their sleep and concentration. They will also be able to enjoy their leisure time, and be in total control of the types of entertainment they choose to listen to. It can also provide an enormous amount of relief for those who experience tinnitus as they will no longer have the constant and piercing ringing in their ears. Instead they will experience a gentle, consistent background hum that they can ignore, helping them to lead a normal life without the fear of having an attack at any unexpected moments.
Sound therapy works by exposing the sufferer to brief, highly stimulating sounds, in order to excite and entertain the brain’s auditory nerve system. This improves the ability of the brain to produce its own internal sounds and therefore enables it to distinguish between external sounds and those it is accustomed to. It helps the brain to be able to distinguish between sounds that are unpleasant and those which are pleasant, improving your ability to cope with stressful situations.
The treatment is usually given in an environment that is silent, such as a doctor’s office or a recording studio. It does not require any type of equipment, so there is no need for someone to dress up or do anything more distracting than simply turning on the music and talking to the therapist. However, this form of therapy has been shown to provide a significant amount of relief, as evidenced by the thousands of people who have experienced significant improvement in their condition. In fact, those who have undergone deep brain stimulation and habituation have had noticeable changes in their personality and the ability to better deal with everyday tasks, even things they were unable to do prior to treatment.
The main benefit of this therapy is the fact that it provides a solution to the cause of the tinnitus, as well as the annoying ringing in your ears. It does this by using the auditory system, the part of the brain that is most often not used, and correcting the habituation to stimuli that make you hear the ringing in your ears. This method has proven effective in treating both severe and mild forms of tinnitus, as well as being very successful in reducing stress. If you suffer from ringing in the ears, this form of treatment could be for you.