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  • Writer's pictureKoorosh Nejad

The best hearing aids in the UK for tinnitus

Updated: Sep 3, 2023

There is proven research that hearing aids can help with alleviating tinnitus. But what type and model of hearing aids do a better job of reducing the annoyance of tinnitus? Continue reading to learn more about how hearing aids can help manage your tinnitus and what model of hearing aid could do a better job.

What is tinnitus?

Tinnitus is a noise, buzzing or hissing that only you can hear, meaning it doesn't have an external source, instead, it is generated (better say perceived) in your brain. Read more about tinnitus on HearingNow.

Can hearing aids alleviate my tinnitus?

The answer is yes. Premium hearing aids can help manage and reduce the sound of your tinnitus. They do it in several ways:

Can all hearing aids help with tinnitus?

No. Some older versions of hearing aids have prefixed noise generators that your audiologist could set up and adjust so the patient can hear white, brown or pink noise all the time (noise therapy). These older hearing aids had limited capability and features in tinnitus management. They didn't have Bluetooth streaming capability hence they couldn't help much with tinnitus sound therapy.

Specific models of newer hearing aids have more features for noise generation and enable you to stream sounds to your hearing aids through Bluetooth. This means that you can do tinnitus sound therapy while working, walking in the park, or walking your dog.

If you have tinnitus and plan to buy a pair of new hearing aids make sure that you discuss the tinnitus management features of the models you consider with your hearing care professional.

Which premium hearing aids can do tinnitus sound therapy?

All the premier hearing aids which became available in about 2019 have different tinnitus sound and noise management features. Please see a few examples below:

How much does a pair of tinnitus hearing aids cost me?

The sales price of tinnitus hearing aids depends on several factors including the brand, the technology level, and the period of warranty and aftercare services that the patient receives from the hearing care provider. Please see the sales price of hearing aids on HearingNow UK here.

Do in-the-canal (ITC and ITE) hearing aids support tinnitus sound therapy?

Yes. There are several options for those who wish to use in-the-canal and in-the-ear hearing aids and want to take advantage of noise and sound therapy with their hearing aids. Here are a few options:

All the above hearing aids are rechargeable and Bluetooth-enabled (with the exception of Signia Silk).

What is tinnitus notch therapy and which hearing aid model/type can help?

Tinnitus notch therapy is a technique to reduce the level (intensity) of tinnitus at the source, right where your brain hears it. There is enough evidence base research to support that tinnitus-notch-therapy could help patients with tonal tinnitus (like a high-pitch hissing) alleviate their tinnitus. Signia is the leader in tinnitus notch therapy and at the time of writing this article only Signia and Rexton hearing aids are able to do tinnitus notch therapy. Learn more about tinnitus notch therapy here.

I already have a pair of premium hearing aids, can I activate the tinnitus noise management on them myself?

No. You need to contact your audiologist so s/he could set up the tinnitus noise management in the fitting software for you. Furthermore, tinnitus noise management needs to be done as part of a tinnitus management strategy. Book a free online tinnitus consultation to learn more about tinnitus and how hearing aids can help manage your tinnitus.

the rest of this article provides an overview of each of the major hearing aid manufacturers' approaches to tinnitus management.

  1. How does Resound Smart 3D App help with tinnitus?

  2. How does Oticon On App help with tinnitus?

  3. How does Widex Moment App help with tinnitus?

  4. How does Phonak's myPhonak App help with tinnitus?

  5. How does Signia App help with tinnitus?

  6. How does Starkey Thrive App help with tinnitus?

How does Resound App help with tinnitus?

The latest Resound hearing aids can be programmed for tinnitus noise therapy. The tinnitus program will be added to other programs on your hearing aids and the patient is able to switch it on and off and control the volume of the noise. The tinnitus noise management will be done on the Resound Smart 3D App. Similar to Starkey, Resound GN has a completely separate App for tinnitus sound management called Resound Tinnitus Relief (download it here: iOS - Android).

Resound Relief offers several amazing nature sounds that you can listen to as background sounds to calm you down and reduce the intrusive effect of tinnitus. You can also mix them together to create your own tinnitus sound therapy (see the below image.)

The second tab of Resound Relief offers a menu of small bite podcasts that help with meditation, deep breathing, visual relaxation and pleasant activities. The third tab is a brief list of resources that you can educate yourself about tinnitus, how to get control of your own mind, how to manage sleep better with tinnitus and an introduction to the app. The last tab is where you can monitor the amount of time you have spent on each section. You may never use the Relax or Learn sections but I definitely encourage you to listen to some o the background sounds on the first tab.

The good news is that you don't have to have Resound hearing aids to use Resound Tinnitus Relief. This is one of the apps that I always recommend to my patients who are looking for an app for tinnitus sound therapy. All you need is a pair of hearing aids with Bluetooth streaming capability to use Resound Tinnitus Relief.

How does Oticon On App help with tinnitus?

Oticon hearing aids including Oticon MORE and Oticon REAL are capable of helping manage your tinnitus through noise therapy and sound therapy. Oticon hearing aids with Tinnitus SoundSupport help you take control of your tinnitus by playing a wide range of relief sounds like white noise and soothing ocean-like sounds. You can discreetly control the sounds in your hearing aids using the Oticon ON App for iPhone and Android. You can adjust the sounds until they give the relief you need — wherever you find yourself needing it. What’s more, you can wirelessly stream alternative tinnitus relief options, such as your favourite music, audiobooks, podcasts, or even relaxation guides. Please read more about Oticon Tinnitus management here.

In my experience, Oticon's tinnitus management provided in Oticon On App is quite basic. Unlike Resound Relief the number of Natural Sounds that users can pick is limited and there is no feature to mix and match them.

How does Widex Moment App help with tinnitus?

Widex is a leader in tinnitus management. Our tinnitus solution ZEN is available in most Widex hearing aids - supplemented by our comprehensive tinnitus management program, Widex Zen Therapy (WZT).

Widex Zen Therapy consists of four components that can be tailored to patients' needs.

  • Counselling

  • Amplification

  • Sound stimulation (via ZEN)

  • Stress reduction

Zen therapy would be more effective if it is done as part of your consultation for hearing aids with a hearing care professional. It starts with counselling when your audiologist would develop the base ground of your tinnitus. Some patients need to be referred to an ENT specialist because of unilateral or pulsatile tinnitus or other reasons that your AuD sees as critical. The amplification of the sound is the basis of helping patients with tinnitus as it helps them hear the sound that patients wouldn't hear naturally, and hear louder, hence in relative terms hearing the tinnitus sound lower.

The list of natural sounds that users can choose from in Widex Zen is quite comprehensive. A nice feature provided by Widex is that you can alter the balance of tinnitus sound therapy between your right and left ear. Often the sound of tinnitus in the patient's ears is not the same. Also, you are able to set a sleep timer to let Zen tinnitus therapy help you sleep.

Please read more about Widex Tinnitus therapy through ZEN here.

How does Phonak App help with tinnitus?

Phonak hearing aids use the MyPhonak app but Phonak's tinnitus management is through a complementary free app called Phonak Tinnitus Balance.

The Phonak Tinnitus Balance App was designed based on the principles outlined by Progressive Tinnitus Management. The aim of the app is to offer patients a way to manage their tinnitus in any situation. The Phonak Tinnitus Balance App is an ideal tool for offering patients additional sound therapy. Patients chose sounds that have a specific emotional effect on them which in turn helps manage their tinnitus. Sounds can be selected from the client’s personal smartphone music library, or from the list of default sounds within the app. The client can rate the effectiveness of each sound, and the overall ratings can then be reviewed together with their hearing care professional to optimize their sound plan. A timer option is available for use when listening to sounds to help go to sleep.. Use of the app is intended to be part of a tinnitus management program provided by a qualified hearing care professional familiar with the diagnosis and management of tinnitus.

The spectral characteristics of the noise can be adjusted to meet each client’s specific needs. The default characteristics are calculated based on the client’s audiogram; alternatively, white or pink noise can be selected. The noise generator can be incorporated into the automatic program or as an additional manual program.

Read more about Phonak Tinnitus Balance here.

How do Signia and Rexton Apps help with tinnitus?

Without a doubt, Signia and Rexton hearing aids offer the most complete tinnitus management for their patients. This is simply because Signia and Rexton hearing aids offer tinnitus notch therapy in addition to noise and sound therapy that other hearing aid manufacturers offer. Please read more about tinnitus-notch therapy here. Here are 3 ways that Signia hearing aids help alleviate your tinnitus:

  1. Noise tinnitus therapy signal - Signia hearing aids feature a tinnitus noise function that generates additional sound in the form of a soft therapy signal. This effectively distracts you from tinnitus, helping you to relax and enjoy life. In addition to a range of preset signals, the therapy signals can be customized to your specific needs.

  2. Ocean waves tinnitus therapy - Inspired by the tranquil sound of the sea lapping against the shore, ocean wave therapy signals replicate the relaxing feeling of being on a beach. Ocean wave therapy signals mimic the sound of the sea to provide a positive, soothing, and stress-relieving listening experience.

  3. Tinnitus notch therapy - Signia and Rexton hearing aids are the only ones with built-in tinnitus Notch Therapy. This is a method that has shown to be especially effective for people who experience tonal tinnitus, the most common type of tinnitus. Unlike the static noise and ocean wave approaches, which introduce an additional therapy sound, Notch Therapy treats your tinnitus inaudibly and unobtrusively. All you have to do is wear your hearing aids as you normally would, and it could reduce the annoyance of your tinnitus in just weeks or months.

How does Signia and Rexton's notch therapy work?

The concept behind Notch Therapy is not to "drown out" tinnitus, but to teach the brain how to ignore it completely. The frequency of your tinnitus is targeted, and amplification of the sound is "turned down" and relegated to background noise, making it easier for your brain to ignore. This way, you don't waste energy actively trying to shut out the sound and can focus your energy and concentration on other things.

Unlike ocean wave and static noise sound therapies, this method is done inaudibly, so you might not even realize that you're going through tinnitus sound therapy. Read more about tinnitus notch therapy on the Signia website.

How is tinnitus notch therapy done on Signia hearing aids?

Following a comprehensive hearing test, the audiologist will determine two things about your hearing, the frequency of the tinnitus and the loudness of it for your left and right ear separately. The Signia fitting software then takes this setting into account in the gain applied for each frequency on each side.

If you have tonal tinnitus and need to speak to one of our audiologists about it book an online consultation here.

How Starkey Thrive app help you with tinnitus management?

Starkey's Multiflex Tinnitus Technology creates a comforting and customizable sound stimulus that you and your hearing professional can fine-tune to soothe the unique, irritating sounds you hear. It can help mask your tinnitus, making it less noticeable and maddening. And it’s completely customizable to your unique tinnitus.

Starkey Thrive is the Starkey app that you can install on your iPhone or Android smartphone to control the volume, change programs (Starkey calls them memories), and other settings of your hearing aids. As far as tinnitus management is concerned if your hearing care professional has set up a noise generator as one of the memories in your Starkey hearing aids, Starkey App is the app you can choose the tinnitus noise generator with.

Starkey also has a dedicated app for sound management called Starkey Relax. It is very similar to Resound Relief, though not as sophisticated as the Relief. You can choose different sounds of nature to listen to and help alleviate your tinnitus.

Here are other features of Starkey Relax:

  • Choose from 12 unique soundscapes to help relieve tinnitus.

  • Access information about tinnitus, including symptoms, causes and treatment options.

  • Find hearing professionals near you who specialize in tinnitus and hearing issues.

Have a question about your tinnitus or need to consult with a hearing care professional, please get in touch.



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