9 Days After Acoustic Trauma Caused by Three M80s Fireworks: Could Not Tolerate Prednisone

Discussion in 'Support' started by CAgirl, Jul 13, 2020.

    1. CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      Hi everyone. I’m 9 days out after an acoustic trauma that left me with an intrusive hissing and ringing in my left ear that I can hear over most sounds, including conversations, the freeway outside my bedroom window, even a bedroom fan.

      It started on the 4th of July, when I was briefly in my backyard before sunset. A neighbor set off 3 M80s that were so loud that birds flew out of trees, car alarms went off, and I saw the smoke. I don’t even know which neighbor it was, but it was close. Either directly behind us or one street over. It was LOUD where I was standing. My next door neighbor said he thought he was back in Vietnam!

      I should’ve left my yard after the first one, but I was in shock and assumed that would be it. After the second one, I told my husband I’m going to the car (we were only there briefly as we were packing up some boxes for our upcoming move). On my way to the car there was a third. My left ear happened to be facing the blast all three times.

      I have a history of tinnitus in my opposite ear I’ve had for 15 years after an ototoxic medication. Luckily that one is a ringing that is completely maskable but still took me 6 months to get used to it.

      The ear that is now hissing/ringing loudly has had some trauma as well. A balloon once popped directly next to it and I had some brief hissing/hearing loss for a couple days. Also had an ear infection a few years ago in that ear where i briefly lost some hearing after my eardrum ruptured. I once forgot plugs to a concert (I thought it would be soft music, but I was wrong!) and had a slight hissing in that ear for a week but it cleared up.

      For the past 15 years, ever since my “maskable” tinnitus began in my other ear due to an ototoxic med, I’ve been sooo careful with my hearing. I’ve made sure to wear plugs to all concerts and loud events and avoided meds at all costs for fear they’d be ototoxic and make my tinnitus worse. I’ve worn plugs to every Vegas show and fireworks event I’ve attended. I know I’m prone to tinnitus. It’s been my biggest fear to have loud tinnitus and have gone out of my way to prevent that from happening. Despite all this, here I am now with loud, intrusive tinnitus!!!

      I went to two ENTs this past week and had an audiogram. One ENT said it showed minimal hearing loss in the high frequencies indicative of hearing loss and prescribed Prednisone pills. The other doctor said no hearing loss but also prescribed prednisone.

      (By the way, one of the tests the audiologist did was the Otoacoustic Emissions test and it ended up being louder than I cared for, especially since so close to acoustic incident. Could this test have done further damage? It showed hearing loss in the affected eat between 600-800 Hz. One of the Doctors didn’t even acknowledge this test so wish I hadn’t done it.)

      I tried only 10 mg of Prednisone and could not tolerate it at all!!! I’ve been struggling with other health issues the last 5 months that have really worn down my body/CNS and that med was just too much for me to handle. I was literally wanting to climb the walls, nauseated, jittery and couldn’t sleep after one 10 mg. pill and the therapeutic dose is 60 mg./day. So I know I missed a window of opportunity that might have cured me which is devastating.

      I am trying a small amount of NAC, Vitamin C and Magnesium. However the ringing and hissing are still there. And they are loud. I asked my doctors about the shot directly into my ear but they both pushed the oral steroids instead. I left a message with one that seemed more open to the injectable last Friday, telling him I can’t tolerate the oral, and haven’t heard back. I think it’s too late now anyway as I’m 9 days in?!?

      I’m only sleeping 2-3 hours a night and my limbic system has gone into full panic mode/flight or flight 24-7. Like I said I’ve been struggling with other health issues that have stressed my body the last few months. However I was just starting to turn the corner in that regard when this happened. I have nothing left and am feeling really anxious and depressed.

      Is there still a chance this loud hissing/ringing can subside or did that idiot neighbor cause lasting damage that I’m gonna have to live with??
       
      • Hug Hug x 3
    2. Sloth
      Happy

      Sloth Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      03.05.2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Blow to ear
      Hello CAgirl, im sorry to hear what happend to you.
      I wish i could write you a well thought out text to calm you down but sadly im not that great with words.
      However, i can give you this text by michael which helped me to cope.

      I got steroids one month after my injury so i doubt its useless. Maybe not optimal but definitly still worth a try.

      Yes! There is a chance. Just look at all the success stories. A significant amount of people recover even months or even years after their trauma. The best you can do right now is to give your ears rest.

      I would also recommend you to find a sound that can mask your new tinnitus. For my intrusive tinnitus cicadas usually work.
      You dont even have to mask it all the time but its good for your mental health to have the option to escape if you need it.

      And remember, you're in the acute phase again. You're probably feeling horrible but that doesnt mean that you'll still feel like that in a month or maybe a year. Its most likely going to get easier.
      Maybe consider therapy because stressing about it wont improve anything and might actually hurt you.

      And finaly, i dont think that this will be for the rest of your life even if it stays. Theres currently lots of research going on and im optimistic that we will get something in the near future that will help us.
       
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    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      Thank you so much Sloth. Did you get an injection into your ear or oral steroids? I couldn’t tolerate the oral. :( Did it help you? Did you also have acoustic trauma?

      I really appreciate the encouragement. I am meeting with a counselor this afternoon. I know she can’t make the sounds go away but can hopefully give me some coping tools. I just keep re-living that night and wishing I hadn’t gone home for that hour. I’ve only slept 2-3 hours a night due to all the stress of this. It’s been a nightmare. Really keep hoping it improves. Thanks again for the kind words.
       
    4. JT2020

      JT2020 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Los Angeles
      Tinnitus Since:
      5/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma, Ear Wax, Congestion
      Hang in there CAgirl! Praying for you!
       
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    5. Tanni
      Provocative

      Tanni Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      October 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ???
      Hi CAgirl,

      I'm so sorry this has happened to you.

      It sounds like you're doing everything right to aid recovery. Noise trauma happens all the time -- this forum is full of people having really nasty spikes, and then completely recovering. So plenty of chance for it to subside.

      Interestingly enough, another poster recently reported the exact same issue of M80s being set off by neighbours on the July 4th and causing him a spike. I looked them up, and it turns out they are banned for residential use precisely because they are so loud.

      I know this won't help you now that the incident has passed, but any Americans whose neighbours are setting off M80s, please do report them to the police. Even if you don't know which specific neighbours, the Police will still be able to find them.

      Here's hoping that silent fireworks take off in future, like the ones they have in Disney World that I could actually enjoy! :)
       
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    6. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      Oh wow. Do you know who the poster is? It’s two weeks today since this began and no signs of improvement. Every day is a struggle and I am so angry at what has happened. Whichever neighbor did that has no idea what he/she has done to me and how much I am suffering because of it.
       
    7. Tanni
      Provocative

      Tanni Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      October 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ???
      The member I was referring to is Jaysterk, who posts about the incident part way through the below thread:

      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/firecrackers-fireworks-tinnitus.7528/#post-533664

      I don't blame you for being angry -- I can't think why people feel the need for such excessively loud fireworks.

      Please don't worry though. Two weeks is a short amount of time when it comes to Tinnitus, believe it or not. Ears take a very long time to heal. I follow people's progress re spikes quite a lot on here because I get so many spikes/fluctuations myself. I've found that it can take weeks, or in some cases months, for a spike to recede, but it seems to me to be quite rare for a spike to stick around.
       
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    8. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      Thanks Tanni. The thing that concerns me is that this is more than a spike because I endured not one, but three of these explosions before running to the car. I’m obviously concerned that there was some real damage done, which I know may not be reversible. It has been two weeks with no improvement which is discouraging, but I hope every day for some relief. I would literally be the happiest girl in the world!

       
    9. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      It’s been just over 2 weeks now since 3 M80s detonated just over my backyard fence (without warning) and my left ear is a mess. I would describe the tinnitus as hissing, static, electrical wires, very, very high-pitched ear-piercing sound. It is NOT maskable and I hear it ALL DAY. The TV or background noises do not drown it out. There is also a lower-pitched ringing sound beneath it.

      I have had mild, maskable tinnitus for 15 years in my opposite ear. This is a completely different animal!! There is regular tinnitus and then there is this type of tinnitus!

      I’m really struggling with constant anxiety, pit in my stomach, little sleep, losing weight. I am seriously still in shock that this is even happening to me. I so regret being in my backyard that night and not running inside after I heard the first one. It was sooooooo LOUD!!

      I could not tolerate the prednisone and also cannot take Benzos (went through horrific benzo withdrawal 8 years ago). Also can’t take SSRIs due to a medical condition. I have to do this drug-free, so please no mention of those.

      Now that it’s been over two weeks with zero improvement, it’s beginning to sink in that this could be permanent. I am devastated as I’ve always been soooo careful to protect my ears. I always wear earplugs to concerts, weddings, etc. This was not my fault and now paying the consequences.

      Please tell me I’ll get through this!!! Any words of wisdom from those who have either improved or have learned to live with intrusive/non-maskable, constant, noise-induced tinnitus would be greatly appreciated. I’ve got three kids who need me and am barely functional right now.
       
      • Hug Hug x 3
    10. Thuan

      Thuan Member

      Location:
      California
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear infection right ear 2018. Sound trauma left ear 2020.
      @CAgirl I am truly sorry about what you're going through. I recently developed a new tinnitus frequency (sounds like a car braking screech) that started 2 days ago. It is maddening. Nothing I do truly mask the tinnitus anymore. My old tinnitus frequency is lower while the new frequency is off the charts.

      From @Tanni's link: tinnitustalk.com/threads/firecrackers-fireworks-tinnitus.7528
      The users who experienced fireworks induced spike did recover. @Vinnitus says it took him three months! It is a scary amount of time for it to calm down. So hang on there and don't give up hope!

      Have you looked at hearing aids? You said your audiogram looks good, but couldn't hurt to ask your ENT about it. I'm going to ask my ENT and see if I qualify. I hear there's a 30 day trial before commit to buying.

      Btw, I'm pretty sure you're very knowledgeable about this but I'll reiterate in case you haven't tried white noise, pink noise, and brown noise. I find that during my tinnitus spikes, especially this new tinnitus frequency, pink noise works best for me. It suppresses 50% of my new tinnitus frequency. You can find these noise generator at YouTube. Here's a pink noise link.

      Try and see which type of noise generator works to suppress some tinnitus volume. But don't use it too often as I think the brain can acclimate to masking noises.
       
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    11. Mister Muso
      No Mood

      Mister Muso Member

      Location:
      Scotland
      Tinnitus Since:
      2007 / April 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music
      Sorry you're going through this. Did you experience any pain or burning around your ear when the fireworks went off? If not, then I believe you should have a good chance of recovery.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    12. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      @Mister Muso I did have some slight pain, fullness and dull hearing the following day, but it was mild and short-lived. No burning. My tympanic membrane was intact. Honestly the tinnitus has by far been the biggest issue. I did see and smell the smoke so I know it was close :(. I also wonder if I had only endured 1, instead of 3 of these fire-crackers, that maybe I would be ok right now. Thanks for the encouragement.
       
    13. uae96
      Thinking

      uae96 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      6/14/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      Do you have sensitivity to noise?
       
    14. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      A little bit, not too much. My tinnitus tends to react to sound too. It briefly elevates a bit as a reaction to certain noises/sounds. Or maybe all sounds. Hard to tell.
       
    15. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      @Thuan

      Thanks Thuan. I hope your new frequency settles down. Mine is also at a frequency that is unmaskable. I could even hear it at the beach yesterday with the waves crashing. Pink and white noise make it spike even more. It has a baseline plus gets reactive to some sounds, which spike it even louder. I am so discouraged right now. It’s been 19 days since onset with zero improvement. :(
       
    16. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      Today is 3 weeks since acoustic trauma. No improvements. I’m beginning to lose hope that this is a temporary spike.

      Sleeping 4 hours a night instead of 2-3 like the first 2 weeks. I had one night of broken 6 hours.

      Three tones in that one left ear. A quiet Morse code, a moderate to loud ring and a hiss/electrical sound that is constant but increases in volumes/competes with external noises. If I’m trying to sleep and want to partially mask the ring with soft sounds, the hiss increases in volume. So it’s a catch 22.

      During the day when I’m constantly around sound, I can hear the hiss/electrical sounds over everything. Completely unmaskable. Can hear it over TV, when in car, etc. Because of this, it is by far most distressing to me. I never have a break. Even if I’m distracted I hear it non-stop. I think a lot of this is because it’s so reactive and competes with other sounds. The hiss is always constant, but is quietist in the morning. As the days goes on, and I am around ambient sounds, it begins it’s electrical chirping, etc.

      I am exhausted and every day is a monumental struggle. Hanging in there for my husband and kids, but zero quality of life right now. So discouraged. :(
       
      • Hug Hug x 2
    17. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      Really trying to not let this break me. Despite my typical 4 hours of sleep last night and hellish morning full of anxiety, today I made the beds, went on a nature walk with husband and kids, ran into Target, and now watching Unsolved Mysteries and folding some laundry while waiting for Uber Eats. Tinnitus absolutely horrid the entire time, and lots of forced smiles for the family, but trying to figure out a way to cope, one day at a time.
       
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    18. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      Very little sleep again. I feel I’m on the verge of a nervous breakdown. We just looked at some houses to buy and the shrill ringing was so loud in all those quiet houses. I felt suffocated. I am in a constant state of anxiety. I also feel it’s getting worse. The sound is no longer a shhh or hiss. It’s changed to more piercing, like the highest pitch tone you can imagine. And it’s so loud. How is this possible that I’m going through this?!? How is this possible my brain is doing this to me. :( I honestly don’t know Im going to survive this. I’m still in disbelief over this. I want my life back.

      (By the way, I’m no cry-baby. Three natural births was NOTHING in a trillion years compared to this.)
       
      • Hug Hug x 2
    19. Tara Lyons

      Tara Lyons Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      @CAgirl I’m 6 months in and I’m still in disbelief. I’m never happy and I didn’t even fake it unfortunately. I’m so mad at my brain for doing this to me. Never imagined any of this.
      I’m here if you need to talk! I know how scary it is.
       
      • Hug Hug x 4
    20. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
    21. dan
      Chatty

      dan Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Toronto, Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise
      Mind boggling disease.
       
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    22. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      2.5 hours of sleep last night. Fall asleep fine but wake with adrenaline and to loud hissing sounds. Can’t drift off again. Need at least 4-5 hours to function.
       
      • Hug Hug x 2
    23. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      3.5 weeks post Acoustic Trauma:

      I have developed a moderately loud, and irritating, but completely maskable tonal tinnitus in my left ear. The problem is that when I try to mask it at night, the reactive hiss (also left ear) starts to increase and makes its sputtering and electrical sounds. So I either hear one or the other sound loud and clear. I had NO SOUNDS in this ear prior to 7/4. :(

      Is anyone in the same position? How do you deal with it!?!
       
      • Hug Hug x 3
    24. tbuzz89

      tbuzz89 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      NYC
      Tinnitus Since:
      Intrusive 03/2020; Very mild 2008
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Power Tools as a trigger, AirPods for the long term damage.
      I’m so sorry @CAgirl, I know it’s not easy and when new sounds develop or change it’s even more difficult to accept. All I can say is that in the early stages things can change very frequently and new sounds can come and go. After four months, my sounds have changed a bit and new ones have come and gone. There’s really no rhyme or reason and I hold onto a lot of the hope that veterans have said on this forum that things do get better in time.

      Mine was crazy reactive when it first started, and even though it’s still there, I do feel that it’s beginning to get a little better. Some sounds still bother it a bit, where others that used to no longer do.

      Patience is such a struggle when it comes to a condition like this. Hang in there.
       
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    25. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      @tbuzz89 Thank you. Really needed the encouragement today.
       
    26. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      Just had a really ugly cry when I got back in my car from out shopping. Holding back tears the entire time I was shopping. I can hear the nails on a chalkboard, electrical hiss over everything. Still don’t understand how this happened when just a few weeks ago I had perfect hearing. :(

      It also just occurred to me that I may never be able to hear music again without a loud hissss accompanying it. When I was out there was some music on and I had to deal with this loud noise in my ear at the same time. Same with watching TV. :( But the music part just hit me. I still can’t wrap my head around this. So, so hard.
       
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    27. just1morething
      Benevolent

      just1morething Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      U.S.
      Tinnitus Since:
      ?
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ?
      Sorry to hear about your situation. Tinnitus is the worst thing I’ve ever dealt with. Mine is severe in my left ear. Sleep is my only escape and I need sleeping pills to sleep. Lately they have not been even working very well. I had an airplane barotrauma in 2008 that may have damaged my left inner ear. Also left TMJ clicking and crunchiness.

      Have you had an audiogram done since your noise incident? Just was wondering if you got some hearing loss from the fireworks. I suppose your ENT is probably useless. They don’t have much to offer other than sending you to an audiologist for hearing aids. Hearing aids seem to help me calm the noise down at times. I’ve tried many prescription drugs as well as supplements with mixed results.

      I was so distressed by my noise that in 2010, 2011 I had IT injections at Paparella and Shea. I don’t think they did much of anything from what I remember. Even talked to Dr. Shulman who recommended Gabapentin plus Klonopin. Not sure if this place is still in business?

      http://www.tinnituscenter.com/frameset.htm

      * Sorry I read your post about you seeing 2 ENTs recently and your audiogram results. My noise is intrusive atm and can’t concentrate very well.

      https://hearinglosshelp.com/blog/do-i-have-tonic-tensor-tympani-syndrome-ttts/
       
    28. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      @just1morething Hi there. I don’t think I have TTTS and no noticeable hearing loss on a standard hearing test. I would suspect the damage was done at higher frequencies. I’m really trying to stay positive but it’s tough as there haven’t been any improvements. I don’t know what the definition of severe tinnitus is but I do know I can hear it over pretty much everything but the shower. Not that it’s super loud, more that no external noises mask it’s frequency. It also competes with external sounds so gets louder along with the sounds around me. It’s been a nightmare and very difficult to accept.
       
    29. MidnightOilAudio
      Ape-like

      MidnightOilAudio Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2015
      It sounds like we have the same type of T. Not that it's super loud, but that the frequency it occupies is pretty much unmaskable by "everyday" noises. I'm 5+ years in now.

      May I ask what part of CA you're in?
       
    30. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      CAgirl

      CAgirl Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      3 M80 Firecrackers
      @MidnightOilAudio Southern CA. Did it improve at all since the onset? I’m still hoping for improvement as I’m only 3.5 weeks in. However, haven’t noticed any improvements so far which is discouraging. How are you coping 5 years later? Does life get better? Right now I am really struggling, anxious all day and barely sleeping. It consumes me (because I hear it all day and night!) Even if it is here to stay, I am hoping my coping mechanisms will improve.
       
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