Reduce Ringing In The Ears With Guided Imagery
Guided imagery is inducing an altered state of mind using all of your senses. And the best part, anyone can do it. All you need is 5 minutes a day and a quiet space.
This technique has many positive effects including reduced anxiety and depression, improved self-esteem, decreased blood pressure, and less pain in the body. So not only does practicing guided imagery improve physiological functions that relieve ringing ears, they help empower you to better deal with your symptoms.
Here are some important tips to help you get started with guided imagery:
- Pick imagery that has an emotional impact on you. Being able to more easily elicit emotion can help you enter that altered state more quickly.
- Remember that just as with everything, it is critical to practice, practice, practice. Each minute you put into your practice, the easier and faster it will work next time you try it.
- Some people find that playing music in the background is helpful to enter the right state of mind. Be careful to choose music that will help you relax, elicits emotions, and in some way connects you to your chosen imagery.
- Different positions can work but pick something that is comfortable for you. You may want to try sitting first. If you lie down and have never experienced an altered state of mind, you could feel the urge to fall asleep. However, sometimes lying on your back works if you are still able to be alert.
- You may experience some strong sensations while doing guided imagery – you might feel tingling, heat in the face, or unusual breathing. This is normal.
- If your mind wanders, do not beat yourself up. It is even normal for experienced practitioners to have their minds wander. Just redirect your mind and keep trying until you get it right.
Try guided imagery at home with these simple instructions.
The recommended frequency is 5 minutes per session (daily) for the first 2 days. Then, increase your time to 10 minutes for the next 5 days. For your second week, try guided imagery for 15 minutes per day.
1) Sit in a comfortable chair or prop up some pillows and sit on the floor. You could also try lying flat on your back with your legs extended and your arms extended next to your sides. Make sure to place a yoga mat under your back for extra cushion. Try to select a dark, quiet room to help you concentrate.
2) If you choose to play music, turn on music that is has an emotional connection to your imaginary place. You could use a music player or a computer, with or without headphones. However, if you use a computer, make sure you set up a dark screensaver so that you are not distracted by the brightness of the screen.
3) Try to wear loose, comfortable clothing. You will need to get rid of all possible distractions because it is easy to lose focus when trying to enter a relaxed state.
4) Close your eyes and start taking deep breaths. Breath in and out, lengthening your breaths. Focus on your breath and your body slipping into a relaxed state.
5) Now, imagine a place that is peaceful to you. This could be a beach, a boat, laying in the summer grass, or cuddling up near a fireplace when it’s cold outside. Your imaginary place can be anything that is soothing to you.
6) Begin to envision the sights paying attention to all the details like the colors, shapes, and textures around you. Look up above you, to both of your sides, and all around to imagine what you would see.
7) Notice the smells you would inhale in this deeply relaxing place. Picture the smells entering your nose and filling your whole body with warm, tingling feeling of happiness.
8) Imagine what you would feel with your fingertips. As you do this, continue your long, lung-filling breaths. Imagine that you lift your hand and touch a variety of the surfaces near you in your special location.
9) Notice the sounds you would hear like the putter patter of rain, children squealing with joy, the ocean waves moving up the sand. Really focus on the different sounds that would relax you and bring you joy. Would you taste anything at your special place? If so, imagine yourself putting food in your mouth. How would it look, smell, and feel? How would it taste?
10) After you imagine yourself completely relaxed at your chosen location, picture yourself happy and carefree. Your ringing, buzzing, roaring, or chirping sounds are gone. Your tinnitus sounds are evaporating from your ears. They are leaving you and flying away from you up into the sky. All you hear are the sounds of your special place. You are filled with calm and a feeling of strength in your body and a sharpness in your mind.