4+ Months. Olive Oil Caused Tinnitus?

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by HollowZer0, Jan 27, 2018.

    1. HollowZer0
      Vegged out

      HollowZer0 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise exposure from power tool
      Hey guys, first post here, but I’ve been reading the forums for a while now. I finally decided to post because everything that I’ve tried, and all professionals that I’ve talked to have not made a difference, or made things worse. It’s long so I’ve summarized it in the TL;DR at the bottom.

      Background: I’m 21 years old, generally good physical health. Had extremely mild tinnitus for as long as I can remember, but about 4 months ago it got a lot worse and since then I’ve been absolutely wrecked.

      The story: The initial increase happened at the start of September 2017 when I was cutting metal with an angle grinder in my university bike shop, and I wore no ear plugs. (Totally idiotic). I was cutting for about 30 minutes I’d guess, and it took place in an underground concrete parking garage, so it was a great place for the loud noise of the angle grinder to bounce off the walls and thoroughly deafen me. Of course I had a marked increase in tinnitus after the cuts were made, and this sound gradually decreased to about half over the course of 1 week. (Both ears). Being the panicked person that I am, I went to a doctor after that 1 week, got an audio test taken, and it showed that I had no hearing loss. Another week went by, and the sound maybe decreased a little bit more but I was still in a panic, so I went again to see the doctor at my university health clinic. He just said that I had to wait longer.

      I waited another 2-3 weeks, so about 4-5 weeks since the initial sound insult, and by this time I did not notice that it was decreasing any more. I went again to the same doctor and he looked into my ears and said it may be caused by wax. (I’m an idiot for believing that because it was clearly caused by the loud angle grinder.) Anyway, the doctor recommended that I use a dropper to put olive oil into my ears, wait a couple hours, and then wash out the wax with water while showering. (The oil was not in preparation for ear syringing, as I’ve since heard is common from this forum. He just told me to drop in the oil and wash it myself.) So I did, and did so for just under a week, and then one day I put the oil in, then went about my house/homework stuff for about an hour. I then decided to take a short nap which I sometimes do, so I set a timer for 15 minutes and laid down on my side, woke up 15 minutes later, and since then the hell has increased.
      For some reason, after I awoke from that nap, the ear I had facing upwards while laying down had gone crazy. Not an increase of the initial sound, but a totally new, loud as ever sound that, to this day, has not subsided. (Original sound was pure tone; high pitched, new sound is a quickly oscillating sound, kind of the sound that you hear when two pitches of nearly the same frequency are played together. People who tune their string instruments by ear are likely familiar with this oscillating tone while tuning. Called “beat frequency” by physicists I believe.) Another audio exam is taken and again looks perfect.

      Fast forward to the present day, and since being so terribly affected by the olive oil, I had been prescribed:
      1. Fluticasone nasal spray (assumed “eustasian tube dysfunction”)
      2. locacorten vioform ear drops(assumed “infection”)
      3. Clavulin oral antibiotics (assumed “fluid behind ear drum”)
      4. Mirtazapine antidepressant(tried once; absolutely tripped out and lost balance; got high as hell from it and decided it wasn’t for me)

      And none of that junk did anything.

      Those were all taken within 2-3 months of the initial noise damage. By now, only the upward-facing ear from the nap still rings with its crazy oscillating sound; the other one that was just noise damaged is totally fine by now!

      Then it’s Christmas break. I come back home from school to spend time with the family, I was on the last few doses of antibiotics when I came and just tried to enjoy Christmas and new year as much as possible.

      I go back to school after the new year, but this time the stress is too much. Within 2 weeks I’ve returned back home to family, I see a doctor there and get prescribed nasonex(again assumed “estuasian tube dysfunction”) and started “hyperbaric oxygen therapy,” which I’m blessed to have parents that are willing to pay for it, even if it doesn’t end up helping. The doctors working at the hyperbaric place check your vitals before and after each treatment, which includes looking in your ears, and each time I go, they say that it looks like there is a fungal infection in my affected ear. I go to a walk in clinic, and after not even 30 seconds after seeing the doctor, I’m staring at another damned prescription for “locacorten vioform ear drops.” This is one week ago. I just take it because I’m desperate and they’re professionals, but today I’ve dropped my last prescribed dose of them and the last spray of nasonex and still nothing has changed. (Not surprising by now.)

      The last twist in the tale is that, 4 days ago, so about 3 days into the 2nd run of ear drops and a week and a half into the hyperbaric treatment, I had a whole day of pure silence. I was playing some music, and when I put it away, I had absolutely zero ringing at all. (Even plugged my ears to “check,” and it was total silence in a totally quiet room.) I had an appointment scheduled with my GP that day, so I went just to get another opinion on the fact that I’m taking the ear drops again, and he gave me some really bad advice: “oh yeah, use the drops, but you must wash out your ears with water in the shower as well!” (Previously I’ve been using silicone ear plugs to keep dry.)
      But again, he’s a professional, so I suck his advice and now, the oscillating tone is right back! Still has not went back down since 3 days ago.

      TL;DR: ringing started from metalwork with angle grinder, later doctor tells me to put olive oil in my ear, olive oil causes aggressive noise in one ear after nap, then take medical cocktail of useless chemicals; start hyperbaric oxygen therapy, cancels all ringing for a day, then I stupidly put water in my ear and it’s all back again.

      Does anyone have any idea what’s happening with my ear? I was putting the oil into both ears, and only the up-facing-nap one got screwed up. Nowhere online or from various professionals have I got any helpful information as to why it’s like this and what I can do to stop it, if anything.

      So I guess the point of all this is: has anyone had ordinary olive oil cause a long-term (months) increase/ change in their tinnitus?
      • Hug Hug x 3
    2. Cheza

      Cheza Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Barking dogs/stress
      Olive oil is a very old and popular remedy for do-it-yourself ear wax softening. Even the British Tinnitus Association suggests using it:
      "When introducing drops into the ear, it is best to use a dropper and lay with your head on one side for a couple of minutes to allow the drops to move along the ear canal. After this period, tissue may be used to soak up any excess from the outside of the ear. Some people find it easiest to instil the ear drops when they are in bed, first thing in the morning and last thing at night."

      I've never used olive oil, but in the first couple months of tinnitus I was hoping it was just ear wax causing it. I bought some sort of online ear drop remedy. Put the drops in, laid down for 15 minutes like it said, then went to the shower to rinse it out. (Shower on very gentle setting, tilted ear up toward it.)

      Well, I got a terrible sense of fullness, and remember thinking that not only did I have tinnitus, now I've made myself deaf, too! Fortunately, that passed very quickly. The tinnitus wasn't changed one bit.

      It sounds like something else is going on separate from the olive oil and shower treatment. Maybe it's a coincidence that the tinnitus got worse. Perhaps it's a typical spike. Hopefully it will calm down again. Get another GP if you can, and let this one know what happened.
    3. AZmom

      AZmom Member

      Chandler AZ
      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Possibly caused by anti-inflammatory medicine
      Thank you for your post HollowZero, I have an ENT appointment in 2 weeks, and your information on everything you have tried is so valuable. Thanks for sharing, that's what makes this support group so wonderful.
      I'm afraid to stick anything in my ears at this point. I tried one round of CBD oil and decided I'd wait to see the doctor. I noticed my T became louder when I stopped all my supplements for another reason. I am going back to my original supplement regimen, which includes Bromelain (pineapple core) and a B-Complex, as I've read that B-12 is important and Bromelain can improve the hairs in your ears. Best of luck to you.
      • Agree Agree x 1
      • Informative Informative x 1
    4. glynis

      glynis Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      England, Stoke-on-Trent
      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Meniere's Disease
      I would try steam inhalation and sudefed to clear out your tubes.
      A nose spray might help and ear drops.
      Olive oil should be from the chemist in a small bottle with a dropper .
      Let us know how you are getting on in a few days.
      Love glynis
    5. Quiet please

      Quiet please Member Benefactor

      Westchester County, NY
      Tinnitus Since:
      May 2008
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Only a guess, but probably hearing loss.
      I used olive oil in my cooking and salads all the time.Until I read that olives and olive oil are very high in salicyclates. Since I changed to Safflower oil (not Sunflower) & don't eat olives any longer, my T hasn't spiked nearly as much as it used to. Therefore, I personally don't cook with or use olive oil anymore, much to the disappointment of my family members. I do still keep a bottle for them to use on their own though; I'm not that much of a meanie. LOL
      • Informative Informative x 1
    6. AUTHOR
      Vegged out

      HollowZer0 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise exposure from power tool
      Thank you all very much for your replies. I’m taking all of your posts into consideration.

      Wow, looking back at my post, I should have shortened it. I just typed it out in one go and didn’t realize how lengthy it was.

      Anyway, today I had the last session of the hyperbaric treatment. I think it helped a little bit. Maybe reduced by 25%. Might be just psychological.

      I am noticing that my ear canal is starting to itch like crazy again. It seems like I have a cut or a scab or something in there left over from my q-tip days. As a kid, I’d use q-tips after showering almost every time, but I stopped this practice 4 months ago after the noise damage since I heard that q-tips are no good. Before stopping, I’d have a constant itching in my ears that I’d often attack with the q-tips, or even with my finger, when it was really itchy and I wasn’t at home.

      That itching symptom is what made doctors think that it’s an infection, since I never had any pain. but now I’m wondering if it was never actually infected. Could the itching and fullness that I’m feeling be caused by a scab healing in my outer ear canal? Could this also contribute to the T?
      • Good Question Good Question x 1
    7. Isabel Savage

      Isabel Savage Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      I had exactly the same thing with Olive Oil! I'm sure, even though doctors disagree, that putting olive oil down that ear triggered something as I've had tinnitus ever since. If I could go back in time and change anything in my life that one decision would be it. I've resigned myself to a life of tinnitus now and I'm nearly a year in.

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