The power of sound to help us relax and heal has been well documented throughout history. This is why sound therapy products are becoming increasingly popular. These can include everything from singing bowls to tuning forks to sound machines that emit various frequencies and tones. These are able to create soothing environments and even help with specific health concerns such as sleep or anxiety.
Using different sounds to distract the mind from intrusive tinnitus is called sound enrichment, and it can be used as a self-help technique or as part of a tinnitus management programme delivered by a healthcare professional. The use of any type of sound to reduce tinnitus awareness, annoyance and distress can be beneficial. This can be achieved by using a variety of sound-generating devices such as hearing aids, ear-level sound generators or combinations of these with amplification.
In this Cochrane systematic review, the authors looked at two trials evaluating the effect of amplification with or without ear-level sound generation or combination devices in people with tinnitus. These compared amplification only, or amplification with an ear-level sound generator to either a placebo or education/information alone. The results showed that tinnitus annoyance and distress decreased, but the improvement in general quality of life was not significant.
For those with tinnitus, there is evidence that listening to music and other soothing sounds can decrease tinnitus awareness, irritability and distress, as well as improve sleep, concentration and mood. However, these studies have been conducted on small samples. To make a stronger case, further research needs to be undertaken.
Other than relaxing music, sounds like white noise and waves are also helpful in relieving stress, calming the mind and soothing tinnitus. They can be played in the background while you sleep, work or play. They can even help block out disruptive environmental noises and help you fall asleep faster.
One of the most advanced sound machines available is the S-5000 from Solu. It combines soothing music with clinically proven brainwave entrainment to help you sleep, relax and renew your body. It is effective for a range of conditions, including chronic pain and fibromyalgia, reducing snoring in partners, insomnia and enhancing focus.
There is also the HUSO Tone Therapy System which uses natural healing sounds to help you slow down, clear your mind and reduce stress. It is easy to use and only requires you to listen for 3 minutes, twice a day. It is designed to work alongside mindfulness meditation and reiki and can be used as a powerful addition to other holistic health practices.
It works by placing the speakers on a surface, or in your ears and you simply listen to the sounds as they play in a forever new arrangement. The hypnotic tones create a deeply restful and peaceful experience that is both therapeutic and magical. It is designed to be portable and has a rechargeable battery that provides up to 10 hours of soothing audio. It is also lightweight, compact and can be easily stored in your bag or suitcase for use on the go.