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Blagdon, Bristol
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Tinnitus - Natural Treatment and Management

ENJOY the SILENCE with this breakthrough treatment for tinnitus

Human Ear Is your Tinnitus driving you mad? It is a sad fact that around 10% of the population have tinnitus at one time or another, and for some the relentless noise is constant. Despite the fact that tinnitus is a common disorder relatively few studies have been funded compared to other medical issues with the same prevelance, and the options for treatment are not only disapointingly few, but the success rate is even less.

I am not claiming to have created a panacea for tinnitus with this new treatment, far from it. I wish that were possible. But as a physical therapist with nearly 2 decades of practical bodywork skills and experience, I have approached the issues that surrounds tinnitus in a logical and physical way, followed by help in a mental and spiritual way.

What do you mean in a logical way?
Well, your tinnitus is not the same as somebody else's tinnitus. The noises are different, how you react is different, the duration and strength of sound is different as are a lot of other parameters. This is part of the difficulty of creating a treatment that covers most sufferers experience.

So instead, we accept that while everyone has an individual experience, the commonality of symptoms includes unwanted noise. What else is common among sufferers? Well, all the physical features of the outer ear, the inner ear and its constituent parts, its position on the head, the use to which it is put, the ligaments, muscles and cartilage attached to the surrounding area, and the kinds of problems and diseases the ear is prone to suffer from.

This is what goes through my logical mind and why I think a physical treatment is so strong
I began to wonder about the effects of muscles inside the ear that are not palpable, and nerves that travel through the inner ear canal that are being electrically stimulated in other areas of the face, head and neck. What affect might these things have on the workings of the inner ear?

For example, did you know that the fascial nerve follows a course through the auditory canal, passing round the wall of the tympanic cavity on it's way to somewhere else via the facial canal and emerging via the stylomastoid foramen. The fascial nerve branches into three here, only one of which inervates with the stapedius muscle, attached to the stapes, one of the bones of the inner ear, and has the influence of dampening down your own voice and loud external noises, so they don't do any damage to the inner ear.

The facial nerve influences taste, facial expression and voice, it creates tears, registers smell, reports on sinus cavity activity, salivary production and taste. I wonder, with all these branches, if there is any dysfunction in the nerve, such as paralysis, or palsy, or viral complications, what is the likelihood of this causing nerve disruption in other areas, such as the stapes and stapedius muscle, and therefore causing tinnitus? I don't know for sure, it's just a question.

The chorda tympani nerve is a branch of the facial nerve that also runs through the middle ear, it carries taste messages to the brain from the taste buds in the front of the tongue. It passes between the malleous and incus bones of the inner ear, the very bones responsible for transferring sound vibration down toward the cochlea. So what is it doing making a rat run through the tympanic cavity? Again, I just ask the question, does it really need to be there?

Another interesting idea has to do with the eustacian tube. Your eustacian tube is a narrow pipe that goes from the back of your upper palate behind your nose and ends inside the middle ear, or tympanic cavity. Its job is to keep the air pressure equal on both sides of the tympanic membrane. The Human Ear

The tube is normally closed, but is opened momentarily when we swallow or yawn by the action of two muscles, the Levator and Tensor Palati muscles. In all the literature I've read on the subject I've only every once come across a paper that talked about what to do if these two muscles ever go into spasm. You cannot palpate them directly as they are inside the skull.

The sterno-cleido-mastoid muscle and the temporo-mandibular joint, both strong, anchoring structures which support other parts of the body cause huge stresses on either side of the external auditory meatus, the hole in the skull where the ear goes internal.

What stresses do these structures pass on to the ear and it's delicate parts through leverage and pressure? A structural engineer would have a nervous breakdown trying to design a structure that would withstand these kinds of forces so close to a delicate, nerve sensitive organ.

How much influence the carotid artery, jugular vein and vertebral arteries have on tinnitus is anybody's guess, but if you put a stethoscope anywhere near any of your arteries, the noise can be quite deafening (thankfully). Does high, low or irregular heart beat have an influence on the amount of noise you can hear? I know if I lie still and quiet, I can hear my own heartbeat in my ears quite clearly. Can you?

Lastly, I was watching a nature program on TV which was all about dolphins and other sea creatures that use echo location. Echo location, depending on species, uses clicks, buzzes, hiss, electricity, radar and all manner of other signal output to manoeuvre their way through the water and locate prey. Well, doesn't evolution suggest that we walked out of the sea millions of years ago? Did we have huge cavernous domes in our head that used these same principles at some point in our past? Could our sinus cavities be a distant relic of the way dolphins hear these clicks? If so, how does this relate to the same clicks, hisses and buzzing heard by tinnitus suffers?

The reason I suggest these things to you is because its got me questioning what collective effect do any of these annomalies have on the ears and our hearing, if anything at all? Has anyone looked at these possibilities? I doubt it very seriously. There is so much that we still don't know, but I'm determined to learn as much as possible.

What does your tinnitus treatment consist of, and what does it cost?
That's a good question because it has come from many individual parts that have been brought together over several years to create this new treatment. Therefore, to be thorough and to give us the best chance of success, we go through a set of fixed protocols in the initial stages:
  • We start with ear candling or thermal auricular therapy. Ear candling has the effect of softening wax, relaxing any tensions in and around the ear, drawing out impurities and massaging the drum and other components of the inner ear. If some physical element is contributing to your tinnitus, this may help remove or balance it out.

  • Then we do the Dix-Hallpike test to ensure there is nothing going wrong in the inner ear that might cause vertigo or BPPV (benign paroxysmal positional vertigo) of the posterior or anterior vestibular canals.

  • Then we perform the Epley manoeuvre. The goal of the Epley manoeuvre is to restore equilibrium of the vestibular system, just in case this is directly or indirectly causing or supporting your tinnitus.

  • The tinnitus treatment itself consists of several parts.
    (1.) The temporo-mandibular joint treatment. This routine is based on the idea that any distortion in the jaw can cause a fulcrum like force that impacts the outer and inner ear. We relax the muscles of the jaw, relax the actual cartilaginous joint that is being distorted by leverage and re-align the jaw so that it is inline with the rest of the face.

    (2.) Finally, we need to do a full facial massage. Remember those two muscles inside the inner ear we talked about earlier? It turns out the muscle in behind the zygomatic arch, just under the eye, has an area of influence that reaches inwards to these two muscles. So we will definitely include those.
    We will work from the forehead to the temples, around the eyes and along the cheek line, down to the sternocleido-mastoid muscle and the scalenes. From the occiptal ridge around to the jaw to the parotid gland and masseteur muscle. Next, the pre and post auricular lymph nodes and the mastoid process and around the outer/external ear, down to the neck and cervical vertebrae, around the trapezius and shoulder.

    • All this takes around 1.5+ hrs, and so the first treatment, including medical history, can take up to 2hrs.

    • The cost of this first treatment is 95 and includes the whole treatment, including the ear candles.

    • This is to give us a very healthy kick start toward addressing what is causing your flavour of tinnitus.

    • Subsequent treatments can be trimmed back to include the elements that work best for you and we can usually do these within the same hour. As this takes less time, the usual hourly rate and appointment criteria applies. Details can be found here.
I have been doing all of these individual treatments for over 10 years, but it is only recently that I began to think of bringing them together to address the issues of tinnitus. This required a lot of study and practice. To date, the success rate is close to 50-60% reduction of symptoms, minimum. One gentleman can raise this to 75% by having a relaxing bath afterwards and just letting his body unwind.

I am convinced we are onto something!

What influence does the levator and tensor veli palatini muscle have on hearing during spasm?
The tensor palatini nerve is influenced by the trigeminal nerve, but it also influences a multitude of other things, like, the masseter muscle that closes the jaw when you eat; the lateral and medial pterygoid muscles that allows movement of the jaw; branches go into the roots of the teeth and detect sensation; it extends the mandible and elevates the hyoid bone and larynx; it closes the mouth, clenches the teeth and retracts the jaw via the temporalis muscle; and also tenses the tympanic membrane, dampens excessive vibrations via the tensor tympani muscle in the middle ear.

Logic tells me that if you have a damaged water pipe, every outlet and joint beyond that kink in the pipe is affected, either with lower water pressure, fluctuating flow or no flow at all. Why should we not think that a nerve is any different? Does being electrical and not liquid make a difference? No. If you have a hammer and flatten an electrical cable, provided it is not broken and shorting out, any draw beyond the damage causes heat at the damaged part and intermittent power at the end, that's if you don't blow a fuse in the meantime. Do you see what I'm getting at here?
Ear Candling for Tinnitus
The research just hasn't been done, so I am working on the principle that treating the potential outside influences using Myofascial release techniques gives us a very good chance of finding what is causing the problem. After all, if 10% of the population are affected, it means that 90% don't have a clue what you are going through. What is it about the other 90% that is going right, and what is going on inside your head to make this happen to you?

Is it really so difficult to reason that tinnitus symptoms like, ringing, chirping, clicking, whistling and popping, or other symptoms like earache, vertigo or deafness are connected to muscle spasms originating in the teeth or the jaw or the back of the throat? When the external pterygoid muscles are in spasm the tensor veli palatine muscles in the inner ear can also go into spasm because the nerve signal feeds both muscles.

What effect this has on the ossicles or the tympanic membrane is difficult to say, but if you throw a pebble into a pond, do the ripples not expand across the entire surface? With the eustachian tube closed over for an extended time symptoms that mimic middle-ear problems can follow. How long do you have to have a faltering or shared internal signal to make the triggering permanent?

What about people who grind or clench their teeth? This can be a nervous disorder, placement dysfunction, or can even be due to stress. Emotions like anger, hatred, aggression can give you neck, shoulder, jaw and head tension, and reduce the circulation of blood and lymph. Will this influence the ear and it's internal structure? You bet it does! Neck and shoulder tension is one of the biggest reasons people seek out therapy.

It's a shame but the medical profession's arsenal is very limited
'There's no cure, you'll just have to live with it', is a very common reaction from the mainstream medical community. I know this is true, my own patients have told me so. Drugs don't work. Distraction audio tracks (white noise) don't work. Hearing aids don't work. Some are given epilepsy pills that turn them into zombies and few ever have any tests that find a medically treatable cause of any kind.

What possible causes are there I could learn to treat myself?
There are many common medications that are linked to hearing damage, tinnitus and deafness. Ask your doctor if you are prescribed something new and read the list of side effects to see if you have been on any medication that has been contributing to your tinnitus. You might be shocked to find it is the out and out cause.

Caffeine laden products, alcohol and smoking are all linked with tinnitus, as are many other foods that are considered 'junk' foods, mainly the processed stuff. High blood pressure, stress, depression and anxiety all have well documented links to tinnitus.

Whatever the cause, one thing is certain; tinnitus can have a devastating effect on your physical, emotional, mental and psychological health. It can range from mildly distracting for short periods, to overwhelmingly debilitating and relatively constant.
A Female Ear
Whilst it's easy to buy into the idea that there is no hope for me, I am inviting you to give this new treatment a try. You could look forward to a day when you don't have to live with tinnitus any longer. Wouldn't it be wonderful not to have all of those unnatural noises going on inside your head? In all likelihood, if we can clear out all the bells, whistles, rings, chirps, clicks, pops, hiss and buzzing from your head, your own normal hearing will improve as well.

One thing that it is important for you to know, tinnitus is not a disease or an illness. It often starts after a serious life change, which makes it a reaction to overwhelm. Death, divorce and illness are all examples of highly stressful situations that can bring on tinnitus, none of which are physical in nature.

This brings us back to a nervous or emotional cause that affects the brain rather than the ear. Physically, the ear may respond to degeneration of the internal workings of the ear, or to outside influence, such as mucus and wax, or an infection of the ear, sinuses or throat.

Giving yourself time to adapt to the new sensation of tinnitus may help you put it in the background as you become more used to the sensation, a process called habituation. But we can sometimes become frightened that there is something really wrong with us and the extraneous noises are going to have a life threatening consequence, which of course, they don't. Over time, a remarkebly short time really, you will begin to notice the noises less and less, and this may be helpful in living something of a normal life.

But I've tried everything and nothing has worked
Disillusionment is common among tinnitus sufferers, at least the ones I have encountered. A succession of failed treatments can make anyone very disheartened and cynical. Tinnitus sufferers are no different and many end up with a very negative outlook. I cannot guarantee you a cure, I would love it if I could. But we are getting good results in terms of reduction of tinnitus noise. Reductions in anxiety, depression and insomnia all offer a sense of improved well being, but it is the noise reduction that I am trying to acheive with this treatment.

I will continue to work on this with good intent for as long as it takes. In the meantime patients are still achieving good results. My one aim is to have therapists in every major town in the country trained in this technique, so that before long, you will also have someone near you who can help you with real, tried and tested techniques, and you too will see an end to your tinnitus for good.

Tinnitus Treatment. This treatment is NOT about what you have done in the past, it's not about what you have tried and succeeded or failed at before, it's not about what is going on right now. All that is irrelevant. This treatment is about the next few seconds, the next minutes, hours, days, weeks and months ahead. This treatment is designed around your needs and to pull you through the bad times to a new life. Please contact me if you want to find out about appointments and prices. I look forward to welcoming you soon. Phil.

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All These Areas Are Within Easy Reach of The Haven Healing Centre, Blagdon, Bristol
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To book your Tinnitus Therapy Session at a convenient time, call: 01761 462722

Note: DISCLAIMER: This information is not presented by a medical practitioner and is for educational and informational purposes only. The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read.

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