As an audiologist who has specialized in tinnitus and hyperacusis since 1997, I have a unique perspective on how to help my patient population. One of the most amazing devices to emerge in the past few years is the line of hearing aids from the Danish company, Widex, and their program, Zen, that is specifically intended for use by those who suffer from tinnitus.
How can we know what is a truly effective approach for any tinnitus patient? Sure, we can look at studies and history and statements from the creators of various technologies and protocols, but in the end, the most important resource for discovering how a particular object or strategy works, is the patient.
What do people say about the Widex line of products? I began with the Mind, which had three levels of sophistication, the 220, the 330, and then the 440, and fit about 50 units on patients with mild to moderate hearing loss along with the Zen option (random tinkling chime sounds that vary in five different tunes). Every single person kept their hearing aids after the 30 day trial and every single patient stated, quite firmly, that they found the Zen program and the hearing aid amplification, to be very helpful.
Every single one. The next year, I fit more of the Widex instruments on those with tinnitus and moved to the Clear unit which provided an amazing improvement in speech clarity, again at the 220, 330, and 440 levels of options, and the Zen, and the same situation happened with those 54 units. Every single patient kept their hearing aids and reported that the Zen program was very satisfying in improving their experiences with tinnitus.
Finally, this past year in 2011, the Fusion unit came out of the geniuses over at Widex, and these units work as a team, wirelessly, and have a marvelous sound quality and many choices, and along with the Zen program, patients are thrilled with the results.
I believe that reports like this one are necessary and responsible, coming directly from audiologists in active practice, who are finding on-the-frontlines results from live subjects who are reporting significant and persistent improvements when using a particular technology. In my practice I have contact with inquirers from all over the globe and I am recommending they find a good audiologist and try a pair of Widex Fusion micro BTE units, with Zen programming, to obtain an excellent level of hearing as well as a significant and immediate improvement in their tinnitus.
In June 2012, I plan to offer a Spend the Day with Widex at my clinic, where I will fit various Fusion units with Zen on patients for a day, and let them drive the units around town at no cost. If you would like to participate in this great trial, please call my clinic and set up an appointment. It would be great to see if Widex with Zen can help you!
Dr. Marsha Johnson, 503-234-1221