Hi everyone, I'm a 23-year-old musician in Vancouver, Canada. In only the past few days, I think I've noticed a persistent, very high-pitched, though really fairly quiet whine in both my ears. I fear the worst, of course, and I'm already prone to brooding and worrying about things for days, weeks at a time. I've been sensitive to harsh, loud noise my entire life, and I have virtually always (whenever possible) used hearing protection when I attend or play shows, usually big foam earplugs. When earplugs are not available, I either cover my ears manually or reach for some toilet paper (which I know is not medically recommended but it's better than nothing, I figure). But there have been instances where I was unpredictably exposed to very brief, very loud noise at gig situations (amp turned up higher than I thought, accidental feedback). I've also listened to music on headphones since I was a kid, and I've probably turned it up past safe volumes when I've been in noisy environments (public transportation). Only a few days ago, I actually began noticing a very quiet whine all the time. It's maddening, and it's making me feel as though I didn't do enough to protect my ears, which feels pretty crappy. Is it possible that even wearing earplugs all the time won't help entirely? (If that's the case, maybe it's an acceptable risk of the job). I still figure I've been doing more to protect my hearing than most other people I know. Ironically, I only really noticed it right after I went in to get custom earplugs molded last week, and I hadn't been to a show in at least a few days. Maybe I only just started paying attention to it? My (probably foolish) hope is that the earwax-softening drops I put in my ears to prepare myself for the appointment got stuck in there and is causing problems, cuz that's happened before. I have been noticing occasional, momentary ringing recently, so I wanted to prevent it from getting worse/debilitating. I recall very early childhood memories of hearing a high-pitched whine in a silent room, so maybe I've actually had it all the time? In any case, I'm preparing to go in for an assessment at the same clinic that made my plugs. I also hope my doctor can flush out my ears soon, because I had that done once and had superhuman hearing for like a week. Hopefully this post makes sense, I wrote it in a hurry. Basically I feel like there was more I could have done and I hope someone can tell me it's not as bad as it seems right now.