Tinnitus Awareness Week - the irony of the title is not lost on me! When you’re distressed by tinnitus, the last thing you want to do is be made even more aware of it!
Although people come to me for help to be LESS aware of it, I’m not sure I can come up with an alternative title for the annual campaign. I fully support the theme of the 2019 Tinnitus Awareness Week (4-10 February 2019) chosen to be Isolation.
Unless they have distressing tinnitus themselves, or they’ve known someone close with it, I defy anyone to understand what living with tinnitus distress is and the emotional pain and very often the sense of isolation that is felt.
The emotions I’ve witnessed throughout my 26 year career helping people to overcome the distress that tinnitus has brought in to their lives are too numerous to mention!
And although tinnitus is common - some 1 in 10 of the population have it - 85% of them are not distressed by it. Did you ever wonder why? The remaining 15% do often ask “How do they do that?!!!”
They’ll usually tell themselves that the 85% don’t have tinnitus as bad as their’s!
But what is “bad tinnitus”?
Tinnitus is electrical activity in the brain. A brain is constantly producing electrical activity - it’s how it functions: from the brain stem activity that keeps the body breathing and the heart beating, to the thoughts, feelings and emotions experienced through the neo-cortex manipulated by the paleo-mammalean (limbic) middle brain function.
*Idiopathic tinnitus is but a part of that cacophony of electrical constant activity in a living brain.
*Idiopathic meaning: Relating to or denoting any disease or condition which arises spontaneously or for which the cause is unknown (Oxford dictionary)
So.... What is Bad Tinnitus?
All adjectives have opposites (antonyms). The adjective “BAD” has its opposite “GOOD”
Is there such a thing as Good Tinnitus? In all my years, I’ve never heard anyone describe their tinnitus as “good tinnitus” except when they compare it to previous experience. But never have I heard someone describe their tinnitus as “good” without comparing it to prior experience. How then can the 85% not have tinnitus “as bad” as someone else’s?
Well, it depends on the meaning they are giving to “bad tinnitus”.
Does it mean “bad electrical activity”? No.
Electrical activity is just electrical activity and without it, there would be no living brain. And we know that idiopathic tinnitus is “normal electrical activity” - otherwise it wouldn’t be "idiopathic", it would be "pathological" i.e. there would be pathology causing it.
What we are talking about here is someone’s EXPERIENCE of idiopathic tinnitus. It’s their experience that is “bad” - not the electrical activity.
Definition of EXPERIENCE: An event or occurrence which leaves an impression on someone (Oxford dictionary)
IMPRESSION means: An idea, feeling, or opinion about something or someone, especially one formed without conscious thought or on the basis of little evidence (Oxford dictionary)
It follows then that it is the EXPERIENCE of tinnitus that is different for the 85% and the 15%, and therefore
it is the ideas, feelings or opinions that are different between the two groups.
Become an 85 percenter!
Anyone can be an 85 percenter!
- The thousands of patients I worked with in the NHS for 17 years
- The hundreds of people I’ve worked with in my clinics since I left the NHS in 2010
- And the unknown numbers of those who have used and completed the online Tinnitus E-Programme
All were able to become an 85 percenter because they learned to change their experience of tinnitus.
Did they all find it easy?
Of course not! They had to change and change is rarely so easy! However, what they all had in common was a need and a willingness to change.
Did the change last?
Yes. Follow-up results at 1 year and at 2 years post completion demonstrate it lasts.
Keep in mind the saying “If things don’t change, they will stay as they are”. It is absolutely true and a no-brainer!
40% off the cost of the Tinnitus E-Programme 14 January to 10 February 2019
In support of Tinnitus Awaress Week (4 - 10 February 2019), there is 40% off the Tinnitus E-Programme until midnight (GMT-UK) on 10 February 2019. So until then, the high level of expertise is still the same but the cost is reduced from £165 to £99. Use the code SPECIAL40 when enrolling on the course GO TO COURSE access the TEP Taster free but make sure you enrol using the SPECIAL40 code before it expires midnight (GMT-UK) on 10 February 2019