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      What's that noise ?

      Report
      Updated 11 Feb 2010
      Download publication (PDF, 20.21MB)

      What's That Noise? A profile of personal and professionals experience of tinnitus in Northern Ireland (2010)

      This research examines the impact of tinnitus on the lives of 20 local people, and assesses the level of support provided by GPs, Audiologists, ENT consultants and social care services in Northern Ireland.  

      This research report examines the impact of tinnitus on 20 people, including its impact on their relationships, mental health, sleep, work and other everyday activities. It looks at the range of ways that people cope with their tinnitus and what support they have sought and received.

      The research also assesses what health and social care service providers offer to people with tinnitus, what they feel works well, and what challenges they face in supporting people with tinnitus.

      Findings show that tinnitus has a negative and potentially detrimental impact on people's lives, although the degree to which it interferes with daily living and health and wellbeing varies from person to person.

      Most GPs reported that they would like to receive tinnitus training but that they did not have the opportunity to do so.

      Audiologists commonly treat tinnitus by fitting tinnitus maskers or hearing aids, but the majority stated they do not have sufficient resources to provide an effective tinnitus service.

      ENT consultants receive the most tinnitus referrals from GPs and provide information and where appropriate, medication. However, challenges facing ENT consultants relate to long waiting lists, limited time and a lack of awareness of other sources of support.

      Social care services provide a small number of tinnitus support groups and 4 out of 5 Health Trusts do not have a specific budget to deliver tinnitus services.

      This research formed the basis for the Tinnitus Strategy for Northern Ireland.

      Download publication (PDF, 20.21MB)