Last week’s Science section of The New York Times included a story on tinnitus (or ringing in the ear) by Jany Brody. “Living With a Sound You Can’t Turn Off” is an informative look at a condition that affects 50 million Americans, many with symptoms that can be acutely debilitating.
The article does a great job of highlighting scientific studies underway to validate the effectiveness of tinnitus therapy. But it fails to mention a treatment called Tinnitus Retraining Therapy that has been used successfully for years at the Center for Hearing and Communication (CHC) to alleviate symptoms for our clients suffering from severe tinnitus.
Susan Adams, audiologist and coordinator of the Tinnitus and Hyperacusis Center at CHC, expressed this view in a letter to the editor which has just been published in The New York Times. View the letter on the NYT site or read below.
NYT Letter to the Editor Published December 11, 2012
So much of the information in Jane Brody’s “Living With a Sound You Can’t Turn Off” rings true. However, we would like readers to know that there have been and currently are treatments for tinnitus that provide lasting relief. Tinnitus Retraining Therapy (TRT) brings long-term relief to the majority of tinnitus sufferers we treat at the Center for Hearing and Communication. At its core, TRT is a counseling program with the primary goal being the elimination of a person’s reaction to tinnitus. In that regard, it is very similar to the treatment option being developed by the Dutch researchers. Additionally, TRT makes short-term use of a device called a sound generator which is set at a low level (rather than a masking level) to mix in with and offset the sound of tinnitus. This therapy has proven to be a lifesaver for severe tinnitus sufferers.
Susan E. Adams, M.S., CCC-A
Coordinator, Tinnitus and Hyperacusis Center
Center for Hearing and Communication
New York, NY 10004