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Meaning In Tinnitus

The psychological approach to tinnitus proposes that it is the meaning attached to perceptions which gives rise to distress - this is similar to the approach psychologists take to intrusions in OCD. This worksheet encourages individuals with tinnitus to reflect upon their thoughts / interpretations when they become aware of their tinnitus.


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Many people hear sounds that others cannot, or are capable of attending to self-generated (or physiological) noise. However, only a minority of the population experience disturbing tinnitus. One reason for this is thought to be the threat-based cognitions that tinnitus sufferers have around their experiences. Meaning in tinnitus is a worksheet for examining the effect of cognition upon affect, specifically looking at cognitions which make tinnitus so distressing.


  • McKenna, L., Baguley, D., & McFerran, D. (2011). Living with tinnitus and hyperacusis. SPCK