How can sound generating devices support coping with tinnitus?

Shameela Munir, Helen Pryce*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


To understand how individuals with tinnitus perceive their sound generating devices help them in managing their tinnitus

A qualitative interview based study employing grounded theory methodology to establish a theory as to the mechanisms that sound therapies contribute to coping with tinnitus. Ten National Health Service patient participants (who had been issued with sound generating devices from an Audiology department in England) participated in in depth interviews.

This study identified that sound therapies helped create a sense of escapism and control. In addition, the process of obtaining devices created a sense of validation of the patient and their tinnitus. These mechanisms restore the previously disrupted harmony between the self and body.

Sound generating devices can assist coping through a number of mechanisms. There is no evidence that they ablate or remove perception of tinnitus. This study contributes novel theory based on patient accounts as to the potential benefits of sound generating device use.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to) 312-318
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Audiology
Issue number4
Early online date1 Oct 2020
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2021

Bibliographical note

Copyright: 2020 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License (,
which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way


  • Tinnitus
  • qualitative
  • hearing aids
  • white noise
  • sound therapy


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