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      Relaxation exercises

      Stress is often linked to tinnitus: tinnitus can cause stress, and stress can make tinnitus more noticeable. Learning to relax properly and manage your stress levels can really help you to manage tinnitus.

      A regular relaxation routine can help to reduce stress levels. And, as you become calmer and more relaxed, you may find it easier to manage your tinnitus and not notice it as much.

      Relaxation exercises usually involve deep breathing, muscle relaxation and rhythmic exercises. They can be done anywhere at any time. You’ll get most benefit if you do them regularly, as part of your daily routine. 

      Many tinnitus clinics teach relaxation exercises to help with tinnitus management. Speak to your audiologist or tinnitus specialist if you think you could benefit, to find out what’s available.

      You can also learn how to relax by going to a local relaxation, yoga or mindfulness class. And many apps (software applications) for smartphones and tablet devices can guide you through relaxation exercises.

      Visit the NHS Choices website for a simple breathing exercise for stress.

      If you feel that you need a little extra help to reduce anxiety or depression, such as medication, see your GP.

      The benefits of relaxation

      When you are relaxing, the following changes take place:

      • Physically, your muscles let go of tension so that toxins can be cleared from your bloodstream. Your breathing becomes more even. Your blood pressure drops and your heart
        beats more regularly and slowly. Other organs, including the brain, slow down their activity.
      • Mentally, you decrease your response to any type of symptom, including tinnitus. Concentration and decision-making become easier because you are mentally refreshed.
      • Emotionally, you feel ‘quieter’, calmer and more confident because it doesn’t take so much effort to cope with things. You feel able to take life as it comes without overreacting. After a period of relaxation, many people find that they can get things back into perspective. Difficulties that you previously perceived as huge can shrink back to their right proportions.


      Find out more about the link between stress and tinnitus, and what can help, in our factsheet Stress and tinnitus.