Sound relief

TINNITUS is a debilitating condition that affects five million people in the UK.

Luton social worker Andrew Fazekas is one of them.

He was first diagnosed in 2004 and admits it was a bleak period in his life. “It affected me terribly and I felt so isolated,” he said.

He even contemplated suicide to end the ‘fish tank sound’ in his head.

But the 51-year-old gradually developed coping strategies.

“I’ve used meditation to help me sleep and breathing exercises to control symptoms,” he explained.

“But I’d like to see more support groups and local help for sufferers.”

National charity Deafness Research UK is hoping to facilitate this through its freephone information line.

It is also dedicated to finding new cures, treatments and technologies for anyone who is deaf or hearing-impaired.

Chief executive Vivienne Michael said: “Tinnitus can have a devastating affect on the quality of life.

“It’s a very complex condition and we are determined to do something about it.

“Along with funding research into cures and treatments, we are committed to supporting and helping sufferers cope with their situation.”

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