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New support group for tinnitus sufferers in Bury St Edmunds will launch in new year

Tinnitus affects around 10% of the population

Tinnitus affects around 10% of the population

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A new group to support people with tinnitus will hold its first meeting in the new year in Bury St Edmunds.

Tinnitus affects one in ten adults in the UK, and there are an estimated 3,500 people in Bury suffering from the condition, and nearly 400 of those find it significantly affects their quality of life.

The first meeting will take place on February 21 – and then every other month – from 10.30am to 12.30pm at Bury St Edmunds Deaf Centre in Northgate Street.

Nic Wray, communications manager, from the British Tinnitus Association (BTA) will be on hand to talk to people about tinnitus and the help and support available.

Jane Frost, of the Bury Deaf Association, who is organising the group, said: “We are really looking forward to getting this support group underway.

“There is a lack of support in the area for people who have tinnitus and no local groups were people can meet up and support each other.

“Interest in this group has already been shown and we are expecting a good attendance. We aim to have a happy, helpful, relaxed, friendly atmosphere at the meetings.”

Colette Bunker, BTA volunteer and support group manager, said: “Being among people who have tinnitus, listening to their experiences and how they have managed to handle things, is a tremendous help for the individual.

“I witness this first hand when attending group meetings. It is amazing seeing the difference it makes to people, especially those who have recently been diagnosed.”

Tinnitus is defined as the experience of sounds with no external source, most commonly ringing or buzzing, but sometimes experienced as whooshing, clicking or even music.

Many people are not troubled by sounds they hear, but for around 10%, the condition has a significant impact on their quality of life, often linked to stress, anxiety or sometimes depression.

Colette added: “Tinnitus can be an isolating condition, with friends and family struggling to understand how it feels to adapt to the presence of loud or persistent noises.

“Some people choose to bring a partner or family member to the meetings, which can often help both parties understand more about the condition and the experiences or behaviours it can bring.”

For more information contact the BTA on 0800 0180527 or email info@tinnitus.org.uk

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