Tinnitus Wellness Apps

Many people with tinnitus or decreased sound tolerance (hyperacusis) are told nothing can be done. Or they wait months for appointments without being given any coping strategies to use until they see a professional about treatment options. Tinnitus wellness apps are a self-help approach that can lower stress or distress and improve quality of life.

Some apps are more accessible than others for people with hearing loss or Deafness. If you have trouble hearing or understanding speech or audio content, look for apps that offer trained speakers with deep distinct speech, visual indicators, text-based, or open captioning (subtitles on). Apps include sound therapy and mind therapy tools like relaxation, mindfulness, and meditation. Some apps offer peer support that helps people feel less alone.

Sound therapy use specific sound types for relaxation and sleep. Tinnitus and hyperacusis sound therapy has used coloured noise since the 1990s. Pink noise (more bass or deeper than white noise) and brown noise (more bass or deeper than pink noise) are often more comfortable. No percussion relaxation music has no drums, cymbals, or other impact sounds. This music has steady constant volume so you can set volume and relax without having to zone back in to re-adjust the volume if it gets too loud.

Apps are often under Medical or Health categories in app stores. Depending on the app, people can use them on different devices like phones, tablets, or personal music players. App store descriptions list recommended age ranges. There are apps for children, teens, and adults. Many apps are translated into different languages; some are only available in certain countries.

Many apps are free. Some are free with extra features or upgrades to buy. Others get paid on a monthly, yearly or lifetime subscription. Watch out for apps that automatically renew subscriptions on the expiry date. When deciding on apps, check for good reviews, best-of lists, high user ratings, positive community feedback. I’ve listed a few highly rated examples here, but I don’t endorse or recommend any particular app.

Beltone Tinnitus Calmer iOS or Android

  • Tinnitus Learning
  • Deep Breathing Exercise
  • Meditation or Mindful Meditation
  • Guided Imagery
  • Coloured Noise (White, Pink, Brown)
  • Nature, Environmental Sounds
  • Sound Mixing and Sound Organizers or Libraries

Oticon Tinnitus Sound iOS or Android

  • Deep Breathing Exercise
  • Progressive Muscle Relaxation
  • Coloured Noise (White, Pink)
  • Nature, Environmental Sounds
  • Sound Mixing and Sound Organizers or Libraries

Resound Tinnitus Relief

  • Tinnitus Learning
  • Deep Breathing Exercise
  • Progressive Muscle Relaxation
  • Meditation or Mindful Meditation
  • Guided Imagery
  • Nature, Environmental Sounds

Starkey Relax

  • Tinnitus Learning
  • Coloured Noise (White, Pink)
  • Nature, Environmental Sounds
  • Starkey Relief Sound

Widex ZEN Tinnitus Management

  • Tinnitus Learning
  • Deep Breathing Exercise
  • Progressive Muscle Relaxation
  • Guided Imagery
  • No Percussion Relaxation Music (fractal music)
  • Sleep Techniques and/or Sleep Sound

White Noise

  • 40 pre-recorded sounds with sound mixing choices
  • Coloured Noise (White, Pink, Brown)
  • Nature, Environmental Sounds
  • Sleep Sound
  • Sound Mixing and Sound Organizers or Libraries

myNoise

  • Multiple soundscapes for concentration, relaxation, sleep
  • Listen from website and/or apps
  • Coloured Noise
  • Nature, Environmental Sounds
  • Sleep Sound
  • Sliders to custom mix each soundscape for loudness and listening comfort

Breathe2Relax iOS or Android

  • Deep Breathing Exercise
  • Developed by U.S. military for anxiety and PTSD
  • Fastest opening breathing exercise for anxiety or panic attacks

Pacifica

  • Cognitive Techniques (text based) under Thoughts
  • Deep Breathing Exercise
  • Progressive Muscle Relaxation
  • Meditation or Mindful Meditation
  • Sleep-Mood Tracker
  • Peer Support Online

Happify (games)

  • Cognitive Techniques
  • Meditation or Mindful Meditation
  • I answered the Happify questionnaire with negative choices, e.g. chronic fatigue, pain,  social isolation, and loneliness. It said my top 3 strengths are lifelong learner, brave, and curious. I did an app on a different questionnaire. It told me I should seek professional counselling.

MindShift (for teens to adults)

  • Option to choose female or male voice for audio
  • Cognitive Techniques
  • Deep Breathing Exercises (no visual indicator)
  • Progressive Muscle Relaxation
  • Sleep Techniques

Aura (3 minute meditations-open captioned)

  • Meditation or Mindful Meditation
  • Only accessible meditation app I could find

Calm- Meditate, Sleep, Relax

  • Meditation or Mindful Meditation
  • Guided Imagery
  • Sleep Techniques and/or Sleep Sound
  • No Percussion Relaxation Music

Headspace

  • Guided Imagery
  • Sleep Techniques and/or Sleep Sound
  • Peer Support Online

People should pick apps where they like the techniques and/or sound options. It’s personal preference. Science shows the more people use mental wellness techniques or sound therapy, the better the results, e.g. daily use for at least 3 months.

Get medical clearance before trying apps. Don’t use apps outside their intended use or warnings, e.g. do not do techniques while driving. Stop if techniques make you feel strange or light-headed. Start at the lowest volume and gradually increase until the sound is softly comfortable. Check with your audiologist or tinnitus care provider for app recommendations or guidance.

What do you think?

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