After 7 Months I Can Honestly Tell You...

Discussion in 'Success Stories' started by gobolts07, Mar 22, 2016.

tinnitus forum
    1. gobolts07
      Loved

      gobolts07 Member

      Location:
      Tampa Bay, FL
      Tinnitus Since:
      8/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Probably noise exposure, concerts, etc
      I do feel better. It hasn't been easy and there were days when I didn't think I could ever feel like myself again. However with each passing day I progress more and get back into living again.

      I probably noticed a high pitched "eeeee" noise in my right ear for close to a year before I went to an ENT doc. I would notice it but be able to unlock from it and forget about it again. I decided I wanted to get it checked out to be on the safe side. I was diagnosed with a 40db hearing loss at the high pitches in my right ear. He gave me a piece of paper about tinnitus and sent me on my way. I didn't think much of it at that point I just went on with things. However by the next week, having googled T and reading the horror stories, I was in a full blown panic. I kept looking for something I could take that would help it. I couldn't sleep for more than two hours at a time, had no appetite, T consumed me. I lost ten pounds in about 5 weeks. I cried all the time thinking my life would never be the same again. I drove to work in a fog thinking maybe that concrete piling holding up the overpass would get it over with. I wondered if I would be able to keep my job and provide for my family. Mind you during this time my wife was 8 months pregnant with my second daughter (who was born happy and healthy on 11/11) and I have a 3 year old daughter as well. The best advice is not to go crazy on the google machine but if you're here we've crossed that bridge.

      I next went to an audiologist about a month later. She has been a life saver. She tested my hearing again and taught me about masking and relaxation techniques. Turns out she has had T for 13 years and her hearing chart looks just like mine, just in the opposite ear. She has been awesome replying to my emails and reminding me that I can and will habituate. None of this, however, helped right away. I even went to my GP to try to see if medicine could help me calm down. He prescribed Lexapro and Xanex for me. I took one Lexapro and felt like hell and threw it and the Xanex away. I decided that medicine wasn't my answer and I was just going to have to suffer through it. I took the hard way but at least I was doing it on my own. (this at least helped in my own mind). Note: the only medication I have ever taken is a pill for my blood pressure/migraines and I have no history of mental health problems at all. I was always the one helping everyone else and being strong. However at this point in October/November I felt completely lost and worried about the future.

      I went on through the rest of 2015 pretty well scared and depressed wondering if I could ever feel better. I'd getting fleeting moments where I did and wonder why I couldn't hold on to those feelings and move on. I still cried a lot and wondered if things would get worse. It came to a head in February when I returned to the audiologist as I had convinced it was getting worse. As it turned out, my hearing was exactly the same. In fact on the subjective T test my masking threshold had dropped from 52db to 26db. This news really gave me a shot of confidence as it was proof-hard proof-that things were getting better, albeit slowly.

      Well now it's almost April. I'm not all the way back but I'm getting there. I'd say maybe I'm 70% there. I've started doing things I love again and not letting the noise stop me. I guess it's going to be there so I'd better get on living. I have faith that I will habituate, I've found that several people I know, including my brother in law have it and don't even hear it unless they listen for it, but they have had it longer than I have and say it took them about a year to get there, so I have faith that I will keep getting better. I'm 200% better than I was 7 months ago and have to be confident that in another 7 months I''ll be another 200% better.

      What advice can I give? Nothing that you haven't already read. But, I'll give a few pointers anyways.
      1. Stay off the internet about T as much as you can. This is something I gleaned from @AlecP. Minimize it's effect on your life as much as you can.
      2. Get out, get up and go! Thank @Honey_Bee for this one. Sitting around and moping won't help. It might suck at first but get going! It will help distract you.
      3. Lean on your loved ones. My wife has been so amazing through all of this and is so much stronger than I could ever hope to be. If you need to get help and find someone to talk to, DO IT. Don't suffer needlessly.
      4. If you read success stories, stay away from the comments. You'll feel good after reading the story and then read a comment that slams you back to Earth.
      5. Give it time. There's no magic potion to help you feel better. I can hear my ear right now but it just doesn't bother me like it used to. I don't sit here wondering how I'll get through the day--even though it's sometimes more annoying than others.

      I hope that someone reading this that is new to T can get some hope that things can and will get better. Thank you to @billie48 @caffclifton @Fungus @marqualler @Banana @AlecP @Nich and @Honey_Bee your stories kept me going during some really dark times when I wondered if I could ever feel right again.

      Like I said, I'm not all the way there, but I'm getting there. It's not always easy, and some days are better than others, but I've got a long life to live and a beautiful family to live it with, T or not.

      Cheers!
      David
       
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    2. noisebox
      Loved

      noisebox Member

      Location:
      Yorkshire, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      West End show. Came back 2015 vitamin D overdose prescribed
      Guess what I was going to right one of those comments that knock you down to earth. OK so i wont.
      I'm so glad you feel so much better already.
       
    3. Zora
      Kick ass

      Zora Member

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      1st time: Megaphone ;2nd time: headphones too loud
      @gobolts07 thank you for your story :) how loud is ypur T?
       
    4. TJohns
      Buzzed

      TJohns Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      load noise / Sinus infection ? not sure
      @gobolts07 Good stuff, love hearing stories like these, a ray of light in a see of darkness, Hope you continue to improve. I am only 8 weeks into my fight and yes it has been hell but I feel a little better about it every day. I am trying to get back on my feet, working, spending time with friends etc.. Its all about time.
       
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    5. gobolts07
      Loved

      gobolts07 Member

      Location:
      Tampa Bay, FL
      Tinnitus Since:
      8/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Probably noise exposure, concerts, etc
      @Zora I pulled out my paperwork from my last audiogram and it was 25db at 8000Hz. I believe on my first audiogram it was 42db at 8000Hz, so my habituation process is ongoing. I downloaded an app from the iPhone app store that has the whole spectrum of noises--Violet noise works well for me with my high pitch.

      @TJohns You're absolutely right it's all about time. Reading a lot of the success stories that I did that was the resounding theme. There isn't anything I can do about the T so I might as well get on with it as best I can. It's a long road and there are many ups and downs but you get more used to the ups and downs and don't react to them as much. My ear is buzzing away right now but I'm doing my best to control my reaction to it and not get emotional--that was the hardest part. This is the first time I've been on this site for almost two months as I'm doing my best to minimize T in my life. You'll get there.
       
    6. gobolts07
      Loved

      gobolts07 Member

      Location:
      Tampa Bay, FL
      Tinnitus Since:
      8/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Probably noise exposure, concerts, etc
      @noisebox haha thanks! It isn't easy and some days aren't great. But, I'm doing my best to march on even on the crappy days. I look at those two beautiful girls I have and that's all I need to keep me going.
       
    7. AlecP
      Procrastinating

      AlecP Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma (I think)
      @gobolts07 I'm glad that I could be of some help! Really happy to hear that you're well on your way to habituation. Remember it can be a long road, but just keep doing what you're doing and you'll get there! Acceptance is the key :)
       
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    8. John Meyers
      Artistic

      John Meyers Member

      Location:
      Chicago, IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      09/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      AC/DC Concert
      Thanks David. All newbies should read this.

      I was doing pretty well until 5 months when I realized T is here to stay for a while. -- I'm convinced it got louder at that point but its probably just my imagination since I stopped masking at that time too.

      At just over 6 months, I'm masking more and staying more busy. -- I always said that "An idol mind is the devil's playground." which is even more true when you have T!

      Thanks for the tips and take care,
      John
       
    9. eric peterson
      Sporty

      eric peterson Member

      Location:
      New York
      Tinnitus Since:
      Onset: 10/2003 Increase: 4/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      who knows? who cares?
      John, Don't judge yourself too harshly if you have setbacks. Many people (myself included) had setbacks on their trip toward feeling better. 6 months is hardly a long time in the greater scheme of things. Try and concentrate on the progress you've made, and be positive. It'll go a long way toward making you feel better.

      good luck,

      eric
       
    10. gobolts07
      Loved

      gobolts07 Member

      Location:
      Tampa Bay, FL
      Tinnitus Since:
      8/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Probably noise exposure, concerts, etc
      Eric you are so right. I'm only at 7 months but if you told me that I'd feel the way I do now back in September I wouldn't have believed you. It sure isn't all sunshine and lollipops over here but I'm doing my best to change the way I think about my T and accept it.

      I almost feel like I wrote this not just to help other people that are scared and desperate, but to remind myself how far I have come, from the guy that couldn't eat and wondered how he'd keep his job and be a good father, to where I am now. Stressing about it makes it 100x worse.

      John, I try to look at it and say every day I get through is another step closer to habituation and another day that I won. If all these other people habituate, why can't I? It's hard to convince yourself of that, hell some days I have a hard time convincing myself of it. But I know deep down I'm getting there even if sometimes it doesn't feel like it.
       
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    11. John Meyers
      Artistic

      John Meyers Member

      Location:
      Chicago, IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      09/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      AC/DC Concert
      Thanks Eric. -- I guess I'm just frustrated that the "swinging the turtle over my head" thing didn't work.. :)
       
    12. eric peterson
      Sporty

      eric peterson Member

      Location:
      New York
      Tinnitus Since:
      Onset: 10/2003 Increase: 4/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      who knows? who cares?
      @John Meyers @gobolts07
      I think that we all can get caught in 'short-termism' when it comes to our T. By that I mean that you only really remember how you've felt recently, so if you have a setback, you tend to make more out of it than you should. If you are able to take a step back and remember where you were when you first started with tinnitus, I think that any setbacks you have now would be able to put better into perspective. I still have occasional bad days. (and it's been just short of a year for me). But last Apr-July I was taking ambien to sleep and xanax to get through the day. Now the worst that happens to me is that I'm sitting watching TV in a relatively quiet room and the noise is bothering me. Sometimes (very briefly) I'll draw an equivalence between those two things... which is to say that I'll say 'things haven't gotten any better in a year'... after a few seconds of reflection, I realize how stupid that actually is, and how far I've come. Keep it up, both of you. There are better times ahead, and the present is better than it seems....

      good luck,

      eric
       
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    13. John Meyers
      Artistic

      John Meyers Member

      Location:
      Chicago, IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      09/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      AC/DC Concert
      Thanks Eric. Good point.

      Many famous entertainers have gone on living happy, productive lives with T (before there were forums). -- I think that keeping busy has helped them forget about it.

      I appreciate your insight.

      Take care and talk with you later,
      John
       
    14. TpaBucsBoltsRays

      TpaBucsBoltsRays Member

      Location:
      Tampa, Fl
      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      @gobolts07
      You have no idea how much this post has touched me...I sent you a personal messsge, sorry it's in 3 parts, but apparently you can only send 420 characters at once...I apparently have more than that to say
      This is very new to my family (1 month), I'm actually the wife of someone who was recently diagnosed with tinnitus and it's been hell, to say the least, on all of us (2 Sml children as well)...anyways thank you for your post, it just empowers my positivity that my husband will beat this and it empowers my strength to be strong for him and our children.

      Thank you
       
    15. Honey_Bee
      Barefooter

      Honey_Bee Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2015
      @gobolts07 Oh this makes me so happy to read! I haven't been on here for a while so this was exciting! Glad you are feeling much better! It really does just take time and living your life. Stagecoach is in about three weeks, and tinnitus didn't even pop up in my mind as I was purchasing my pass. Running def saved me, which apparently I need to do more of since I have wedding dress to fit in to and the ice cream isn't helping :D Congratulations on your success and rocking your tinnitus management!
       

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