No AccessAmerican Journal of AudiologyResearch Note2 Jun 2022

Application of the Behavior Change Wheel Within the Context of Internet-Based Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Tinnitus Management

    Purpose:

    Although experiencing tinnitus can lead to many difficulties, these can be reduced by using techniques derived from cognitive behavioral therapy. Internet-based cognitive behavioral therapy (ICBT) has been developed to provide an accessible intervention. The aim of this study was to describe how ICBT can facilitate tinnitus management by identifying the active ingredients of the intervention from the perspective of health behavior change.

    Method:

    The ICBT intervention was evaluated using the Behavior Change Wheel in eight steps across the following three stages: (1) understanding the behavior, (2) identifying intervention options, and (3) identifying content and implementation options.

    Results:

    Target behaviors identified to reduce tinnitus distress, as well as additional problems associated with tinnitus, included goal setting, an increased understanding of tinnitus, encouraging deep breathing and progressive muscle relaxation, identifying and restructuring unhelpful thoughts, engaging in positive imagery, and reducing avoidance behaviors. ICBT provided the required components for individuals to be physically and psychologically capable of adapting to tinnitus, providing social and environmental opportunities to manage hearing loss through practice and training, and facilitated automatic and reflective motivation.

    Conclusion:

    Understanding ICBT in the context of the Behavior Change Wheel has helped identify how its effectiveness can be improved and can be used for future tinnitus intervention planning.

    Supplemental Material:

    https://doi.org/10.23641/asha.19555213

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    Additional Resources