Do you have trouble falling asleep at night? You’re not alone. As an audiologist, I've seen a lot of tinnitus patients who experience trouble falling asleep at night. Especially in a quiet environment, a ringing, buzzing, or hissing sound can distract and prevent restful sleep. It can be extremely frustrating and disruptive, especially when trying to relax. That's why white noise machines can be a great tool for tinnitus sufferers.
White noise machines use natural or synthesized sounds to generate a constant, soothing sound that can help drown out tinnitus ringing and increase relaxation. In addition, many white noise machines are portable, low-cost, and easy to use. Fortunately, white noise machines can help you cope with tinnitus and get the rest you need. This article lists some of the best white noise machines to help cope with tinnitus.
Why White Noise Helps with Tinnitus
Tinnitus sounds different for everyone who experiences it. The sound can vary from a faint, high-pitched ringing to a loud, roaring sound. Due to this variance, the best sound to mask tinnitus can also vary from person to person. White noise contains an equal balance of all audible frequencies to the human ear. Other colors of noise are different variations of white noise, and these different types of noise can sometimes be more beneficial to cover tinnitus. Regardless of the sound you choose, any masking noise works by helping the tinnitus to blend in with the background noise so that the tinnitus becomes less distracting. Using masking noise can help you relax so that you can relax and fall asleep.
What to Look for in a White Noise Machine
- Sound options
- Ease of use
- Power source
When selecting a white noise machine for tinnitus, there are several factors to consider. Let's go through some of the points to consider.
Different types of white noise machines offer different sound options. For example, some devices may offer a variety of noise colors. Others might include a more extensive library of sounds, including nature, music, or other soothing sounds. It's helpful to have a range to select from to have options that help mask your tinnitus and that you enjoy listening to.
Settings and Functions
Some white noise machines may have different settings that you can customize. For example, depending on the device, you can adjust the sound level, choose between a range of frequencies or tones, and set timers for when the sound should turn off. These functions can make using the machine easier and more enjoyable.
Ease of Use
White noise machines should be easy to use. Look for models with intuitive controls and make accessing the sound settings you want easy. Some options are Bluetooth enabled and use an app, while others use manual remotes to control. Choose the option that works best for you.
Most white noise machines plug into a wall outlet or operate on batteries. However, some are battery-powered or can use rechargeable batteries. This might be helpful if you plan to take the machine with you when traveling.
The design of a white noise machine should balance the ambiance of your home space. Some devices may have a modern and sleek look, while others offer more traditional looks. Consider the color and style that would fit best in your room.
Size and portability may be significant depending on where you use the machine. For example, some models are designed for travel and might be more lightweight, while others may have a larger footprint to fit on a nightstand or dresser.
Take this device to the next level. Some white noise machines may have additional features like aromatherapy diffusers or light options to help you relax. If these options are essential to you, look for models with those extra features.
Top 5 Picks
Let's go through our favorite options.
1. LectroFan EVO
The LectroFan Evo is an excellent option for those who prefer a sleek and modern look. This machine offers a range of sounds, from ocean noise to fan sounds. There are 22 different sound options, including two ocean sounds (one softer and one more rough ocean noise), ten colored noise sounds, and ten fan sounds. The LectroFan EVO is known for its clear, rich sound within a portable size and at a reasonable price point. It also has different volume levels (ranging from just barely audible to up to 87 decibels) and a timer function. One drawback: The timer can only be set by the hour rather than minutes.
2. Sound + Sleep
The Sound+Sleep is affordable and offers excellent sound quality and natural, organic sound options (30 to choose from!) recorded from everyday life. Options include a waterfall, a train, and a fireplace. Additionally, you can use the "richness" button to add other layers of natural sound. For example, if you're listening to the ocean surf, you can add the sound of seagulls and other authentic sounds. The raised buttons and dial make it easy to navigate in the dark. The "adaptive" button is another nice feature. When selected, the volume will adjust to blend in at just the right volume with the ambient surroundings without needing to adjust it. The time allows for 30-minute increments. It comes in a convenient travel pouch.
3. Serene Evolution White Noise Machine
The Serene Evolution machine is conveniently portable and rechargeable. This white noise machine includes 36 different sounds. When you listen, you can either use a 30, 60, or 120-minute time or listen nonstop without a timer. Conveniently, the machine remembers the last setting you used, so you can easily go back to your favorite.
4. Hatch Restore Smart Sleep Assistant
This versatile Hatch Restore machine functions as an alarm clock, reading lamp, and meditation app. Through Wifi connection, you'll have access to an expanding sound library with plenty of great options. You'll enjoy the natural sunrise alarm that gradually brightens to wake you up gently after a good night's rest. It requires a plug-in power cable to a wall outlet. Hatch Restore has a companion sleep app for iOS and Android to use as a remote.
5. Magicteam Sound Machine
This Magictream sound machine is a conveniently portable option, featuring 20 different, non-looping sounds. With 32 different volume levels, a wide range of options exists to find the right level to cover and mask your tinnitus. Set the timer for one hour or up to five hours.
White noise machines can be an excellent way to help you get a better night's sleep or create a calming atmosphere in your home. However, finding the right machine for your needs requires careful consideration of the options and selection criteria. When shopping for one, consider factors like ease of use, power source, design, size/portability, and add-ons to find the best option. We've highlighted some of our top picks to help you start your search. With some research, you can find the perfect white noise machine for your home and quickly get a better night's rest!