March 4 2015
Tinnitus sufferers urged to take part in Glyndŵr research
The 240,000 tinnitus sufferers in Wales are being urged to take part in university research designed to examine the impact of living with the hearing condition.
Health lecturers at Glyndŵr University in Wrexham have joined forces with Action on Hearing Loss Cymru and Tinnitus.org to explore the effect it has on the daily lives of people forced to cope with the distressing ailment.
They have drawn-up a survey and are urging people who experience tinnitus, which is typically described as ringing, whistling, hissing, buzzing, music or humming, to take part in the study.
The severity of tinnitus varies from person to person; it can also fluctuate in loudness from one day or situation to another and can be brought on by a mental or physical ‘change’, not necessarily related to hearing in the ear or the auditory pathway.
Debbie Roberts, Professor of Nurse Education and Clinical Learning at Glyndŵr University, is leading a team of researchers determined to shed more light on the subject and garner answers that will help medical and nursing experts explore new ways of dealing with the complaint.
“We want to improve our understanding of the range of sounds experienced and the impact that having tinnitus has on an individuals daily living,” said Professor Roberts.
“We are asking people who experience tinnitus to undertake a short on-line survey to tell us about how it affects them.”
She added: “Participants can be adults who are hearing, hard of hearing or deaf, and who have experienced tinnitus for more than three months.”
Tinnitus affects around six million people in the UK, and for some it can have a serious impact on quality of life. Tinnitus can lead to stress, sleep problems and anxiety. There is currently no cure but there are therapies available.
Richard Williams, Director of Action on Hearing Loss Cymru, said: “We know that there are around 240,000 people in Wales with tinnitus.
“It can be a terrible condition, leading to isolation, depression and other associated problems.
“Yet our recent report Audiology: Under Pressure found that where you live in Wales will dictate whether you get access to the key services needed to manage your tinnitus.
“For example, only three health boards - Betsi Cadwaladr in North Wales, Cardiff and Vale, and Aneurin Bevan - offer access to Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, which is one of the most effective tinnitus treatments available and Department of Health-recommended.
“It’s important that we know as much as possible about the impact of living with tinnitus and we are hopeful that the results of Glyndŵr University’s study will be useful for us when shaping our future support for people with tinnitus in Wales.”
The survey is open until the end of March. To take part, visit http://bit.ly/1CuEf0x
For further information, or if you have any questions, call Professor Roberts on 01978 293212 or email email@example.com