“I can see a path forward now”: A qualitative investigation of online groups for tinnitus in the time of Covid-19

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objectives
The Covid-19 pandemic led the British Tinnitus Association to offer more online support to people with tinnitus. The aim of this study was to understand how low-intensity group-based digital interventions could benefit people with tinnitus.

Design
Semi-structured interviews explored participants’ experiences and views on receiving support via an online group.

Study sample
Sixteen people with tinnitus who had attended a recent online tinnitus group and/or workshop were recruited using convenience sampling.

Results
Three overarching themes were extrapolated from the data: feeling part of a community, being reliably informed, and living better with tinnitus.

Conclusions
Participants reported significant benefits from both types of online group. There was appreciation for the accessibility of help during lockdown, and participants felt that this type of support would continue to be valuable post-pandemic. As seen in research on face-to-face groups, benefits came from a supportive community of people with tinnitus and knowledgeable, skilled and trustworthy facilitation and information provision. Outcomes focussed on feeling less isolated, more informed and hopeful. Online groups could offer an accessible ongoing resource supporting people on their journey with tinnitus.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Audiology
Early online date2 May 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2 May 2022

Keywords

  • Tinnitus
  • digital
  • information groups
  • online
  • patient education
  • support groups

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Speech and Hearing

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