The American Tinnitus Association (ATA) announced it is giving free access to its Spring 2020 digital issue of Tinnitus Today magazine – “Tinnitus in a Time of Chaos.” The issue can be found online and provides a variety of resources and real-life advice for managing mental health during tumultuous times.
“The COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented global event that has radically altered our day-to-day existence, threatened the health of millions, and has left many of us cut off from friends and family. Now is the time to pull together and share whatever we can to get through this,” said ATA CEO, Torryn P. Brazell, CAE.
Tinnitus can trigger insomnia, depression, anxiety, and even suicidal ideation, so the issue is relevant to the broader populace.
“The fear of this pandemic has ignited an emotional firestorm for millions of us who may never have had to draw on tools for coping with difficult emotions,” said Jill Meltzer, AuD, who is chair of the ATA board of directors. “As an organization, we help people daily who are struggling with tinnitus, from finding appropriate healthcare practitioners to providing easy-to-use management tools to improve concentration and sleep. In our latest publication, we’re tackling the negative emotional impact of tinnitus, which can trigger anxiety, fear, and depression. Those emotions are what many of us are now feeling, so we want to make this issue available to people outside of the tinnitus community.”
For most of the 26 million adult Americans who have tinnitus, it is manageable. Stress, however, can exacerbate it, so self-care strategies are central to its management.
“We are in a time of chaos, and this publication provides advice on finding help and how to utilize therapy options—online and in-person—as well as how to make the best of less-than-ideal choices,” Brazell said. “As Dr Meltzer said, we hope this issue can provide useful tools for people burdened by stress and anxiety during this uncertain time.”
Brazell, who also serves on two nonprofit mental health boards, noted that our nation was already experiencing record levels of mental health distress, and that COVID-19 exacerbated issues for those struggling with anxiety and depression while engulfing millions of others in a negative cycle of fear, worry, and anxiety.
“We have to be very deliberate about putting the brakes on negative emotions and taking care of our physical and mental health to get through this,” she said.
The leading cause of tinnitus is exposure to loud sound that damages an individual’s auditory system; the second leading cause is head or neck trauma. Tinnitus is also the leading service-connected disability for US veterans