Alzheimer's Disease and Tinnitus: Could They Be Related?

Discussion in 'Support' started by Rachel Murray, Aug 25, 2014.

tinnitus forum
    1. Rachel Murray
      Amazed

      Rachel Murray Member

      Location:
      Amsterdam, NL
      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2014
      Hello dear friends, I have been thinking a lot about things that all of us, with high frequency tinnitus or low frequency tinnitus, with vertigo or not, men or women, younger or older, from so many different countries could have in common - it would be interesting to find a pattern.
      I will write here the things I have in my life that maybe could influence having tinnitus:
      - several close relatives (including my mother) with Alzheimer's disease (but she never had tinnitus, at least that I know);
      - wisdom teeth on right side removed last year;
      - frequent plane trips;
      - prediebetes.

      Does anyone has one of these things? Does anyone has something to add to the list that could make sense to a Tinnitus pattern?
       
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    2. LadyDi
      Busy

      LadyDi Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Florida, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Barotrauma/airplane
      Not that I am any expert:

      But definitely think there could be a connection between flying a lot (pressure changes when an airplane descends can cause serious problems, particularly if you have eustachian tube dysfunction. It led to my tinnitus.) Also, many people report tinnitus problems after having major dental work.

      But Alzheimer's disease? Not sure. Alzheimer's involves the death of neurons, not of over-stimulation of nerves involved in the auditory system. Yet I myself have asked a few times on this board if anyone has had a stroke. I did, and it left me with an area of brain death in my upper right frontal lobe.I went to several neurologists and a neuro-psychologist to see if this in any way impacted my tinnitus. Answer was: No way to really tell. Ultimately, what they agreed on was that while my stroke deficits did not "cause" my tinnitus, it might make it more difficult for me to habituate. Jury still is out.

      I think ultimately researchers will find many different things may make someone more likely to be at risk for tinnitus (I think that could include people who are anxious or depressed, taking an ototoxic medication for a period of time, had ongoing noise exposure, have circulation issues, and other things). That person could have one of these factors or a combination. Then a trigger event occurs and, because the ground is fertile, tinnitus blossoms in that person where another person exposed to the same trigger has no T. Neurologists think Alzheimer's may act the same way. For example, there have been studies of twins, both with identical genetic makeups. One twin develops Alzheimer's. The other doesn't Why?

      This just my theory, in no way scientific, researched or qualified.
       
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    3. Marlene
      English

      Marlene Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Poole Dorset England
      Tinnitus Since:
      July 1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Bacterial virus
      Rachel good thread to bring up will be following this ,see what's put up.No doubt at some given time this has been a question is there a common thread to who gets it.Sets you thinking .
       
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    4. Rachel Murray
      Amazed

      Rachel Murray Member

      Location:
      Amsterdam, NL
      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2014
      @LadyDi Thank you for your answer - and thank you for giving me your opinion about Alzheimer - Tinnitus possible connection. I am very relieved to read your explanation! I can't avoid thinking about it because it also involves the mind (or, to be more precise, the head!) - I have seen my mother and my aunts going to the very last stage of Alzheimer and of course it scares me. Having now this problem in my head worries me a lot, imagine having Tinnitus and Alzheimer at the same time! I fear my future.

      About flying, I have no doubts that it all started with pressure issues (although it was severely aggravated by a medicine) - I remember suffering a lot with pressure for some years, then it just stopped - maybe it was damaged by then.

      About dental work, I thought of it because my wisdom teeth were removed just some months before starting having some pain in my ear - that led to some ear drops that caused me the Tinnitus - but my sister also had hers removed and had no problems with it!

      I would say in my case pressure during flights started it and then those stupid ear drops made it much worse.

      I will forget Alzheimer for now - my 6 different noises are enough trouble, I don't need more worries in my head!

      @Marlene , thank you for your support!
       
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    5. Marlene
      English

      Marlene Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Poole Dorset England
      Tinnitus Since:
      July 1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Bacterial virus
      Hiya Rachel,you doing better today ?hope that's a yes.
      Think what Lady Di wrote is more to the mark Rachel,as she had a serious stroke,she's given it some thought ,like she would,I've done the same since I contracted bad head virus,all perfectly normal thinking.
      Just because a family member has it ,doesn't mean another in family will get it with T,like with asthma in my family,one sister is asthmatic ,but other siblings not,why no one knows ,same with T I've got it but siblings have not.Ive looked at us in relation to health,life styles,nothing connects up.
      Lady Di said about twins why does one get certain things and other doesn't.
      What you said,wouldn't worry about it,got to much going on with T to keep you occupied,far to young to give Alzheimer's the time of day,but share your concern as to your mum,which I think is an age related thing for the most part.ive never heard of a young person having it myself.Women get brain fog,that's common in menopause,but men also get that .
      Maybe one of the Drs on board could give a view on this thread.
      Keep looking forward,chin up,live the day your in now.xxxx
       
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    6. LadyDi
      Busy

      LadyDi Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Florida, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Barotrauma/airplane
      Hey @Rachel, if this makes you feel any better: the general feeling among medical researchers is that the genetic connection to Alzheimer's may have been somewhat over-hyped. Yes, there is a link -- in some cases. But genetics definitely is not destiny, they feel now. In my own family, my maternal grandmother developed Alzheimer's in her 60s and was dead by her mid 70s. But my mother, at 85, is fine. Also, what we today call Alzheimer's is proving to be multiple types of related dementias with similar symptoms. Some of them may have no genetic link at all.

      I am so sorry you are going through this in your family, because watching someone struggle with Alzheimer's or any dementia is very painful. But really, there is nothing that guarantees this is in your future. I hope this brings you some peace. Hugs.
       
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    7. Mark McDill
      Curious

      Mark McDill Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Papillion, NE
      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Likely stress, anxiety, an antibiotic and nsaids
      @Rachel Murray

      I'd have to echo @LadyDi; I don't think any statistical analysis would show a link between Alzheimer's (or any of the neurological disorders for that matter) and T beyond coincidental -- a correlative relationship would be a real stretch. Both my parents and my wife's parents have T (as do a bazillion other people) and I would not be surprised if the Alzheimer's to T ratio was very low (like 1:1000000). Certainly not enough to show a correlation. Even if the ratio was much higher, I'm not sure it possible to actually connect the two since T is almost always associated with the aging process anyways.

      Many say T is solely a neurological disorder while others say it's somata-sensory based; I don't think T is an 'either/or', I think it's a 'both/and' (with, perhaps, emphasis in a particular area per individual). I believe my T is primarily somata-form but there is no denying a neurological component because that is ultimately where perception takes place and it must interact with the somata-sensory components as well as the limbic and thalamus systems (patently neurological components).

      I'm amazed at the complexity (and efficiency) our auditory system (genius!).

      Mark
       
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    8. russiancarl

      russiancarl Member

      @Rachel Murray I'd be very surprised to see a link between Alzheimers and tinnitus suffers. Yes, they both involve the brain but they act in very different ways. There is bound to be some overlap as there are for more T sufferers but I wouldn't expect to see one related to the other in any real way.

      Then again, I'm no scientist and new things keep popping up that baffles us all. For instance, it turns out HIV positive patients don't really get MS. They have a drastically reduced risk and the doctor who figured it out stumbled upon it on accident. It will be interesting where that will lead - they are hoping that it is the HIV drugs that are granting the people immunity but if it turns out to be the disease itself, well then that take years and years to figure out and as of now there aren't any real effective treatments of MS.

      That's another thing that gets me down about T. Alzheimer's is so much worse and has so much money poured into it and yet they are not really close to a cure. It's in the brain. T is in the brain... what hope do we have? I really do hope that the few drugs in the pipeline for us work but man, the amount of failed drugs for Alzheimer's is staggering

      @LadyDi Ah the stuff with differing twins. Welcome to the wonderful world of epigenetics... it was all the rage maybe 10 years ago... but it seems to have faded from fashion much like string theory. It's really neat that the world we live in fundamentally alters our DNA. So much so that twins, at the end of their lives, will have drastically different read outs.

      We really are what we eat!
       
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    9. Rachel Murray
      Amazed

      Rachel Murray Member

      Location:
      Amsterdam, NL
      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2014
      Thank you all for your fantastic answers, is is great to know Tinnitus is not the possible beginning of my brain failing.
      My grandfather (my mother's father), my mother ad my 2 aunts (her sisters) all died with Alzheimer or something very similar - I'm not sure if my grandfather had another type of dementia but in my mother and aunts' case it was Alzheimer for sure - we could perfectly see the stages evolving - my own mother, for having watched her two sisters getting it before, could realize around end of stage 2 she had the disease - it was in the day she looked at her digital alarm clock and couldn't understand the time - we already knew, but were able to hide it from her for around 3 or 4 years. After that, it was really quick until the end. Since the first "confusions" until the end, it lasted around 10 years - she died at 72. In the last 2 years, she couldn't recognized me anymore.
      So for the last few years I am always analyzing myself and am really worried every time I say a totally stupid word when I mean something completely different - like "car" instead of "pencil", for example. And it happens quite often.
      But now God gave me this new entertainment: 6 different noises inside my head 24 hours a day - a whistle, a ringing, a mosquito, a fridge motor, a car motor and a vibration. Wonderful. Sometimes I wonder how I will live for the rest of my life with this. Well, at least "it doesn't hurt" (my son asked me the other day:"but does it hurt or is it just annoying?").
       
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    10. Thegeen
      Thinking

      Thegeen Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2008
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    11. Thegeen
      Thinking

      Thegeen Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2008
      Here are the 9 steps for improving cognitive health and 4 tips for improving vascular health - If one was religious about following these mandates (and obtained all the possible help out their for their hearing loss - e.g. hearing aids) - wouldn't one have a chance at not getting or slowing down dementia?


      9 Steps to Reversing Dementia

      Start by looking hard for correctable causes of memory loss. They include:


      Doctors who practice Functional Medicine and follow the principles I talk about in UltraWellness can help you find these problems.

      Once you identify the underlying causes of the imbalance, here are a few things that can help your mind get a tune-up:

      1. Balance your blood sugar with a whole foods, low glycemic diet
      2. Exercise daily — even a 30-minute walk can help
      3. Deeply relax daily with yoga, meditation, biofeedback, or just deep breathing
      4. Take a multivitamin and mineral supplement
      5. Take an omega-3 fat supplement
      6. Take extra vitamin B6, B12, and folate
      7. Take vitamin D
      8. Treat thyroid or low sex hormones
      9. Get rid of mercury through a medical detoxification program

      Four steps for vascular health

      Because vascular diseases like AAA often have no symptoms, Dr. Todd recommends paying attention to your risk factors and taking some preventive measures. Men over 50, cigarette smokers, those with a family history of vascular disease and anyone managing high cholesterol or high blood pressure are at risk.

      1. Get a simple screening.
      Two-thirds of patients with ruptured aortic aneurysms didn’t know they had a problem until after the medical emergency, which is why preventive screenings are so important. A simple, 10-minute non-invasive ultrasound can determine the size and location of an aneurysm. “Aortic aneurysm is a preventable, identifiable disease that we can screen for on a regular basis,” Dr. Todd says. “All it takes is a conversation with your doctor if you have risk factors.”

      If you’re diagnosed, you can work with a vascular surgeon to monitor the aneurysm, or undergo a stent-graft repair or open aneurysm repair procedure.

      1. Kick the habit for good.
      Smoking damages the lining of the arteries and blood vessels, thereby weakening the vascular system and potentially triggering AAA. It also increases blood pressure and the tendency for blood to clot. Within two years of quitting smoking, you can cut your vascular disease risk by as much as one third. Find support through a Smoking Cessation Program at the Continuum Hospitals of New York.

      1. Dissect your dinner plate.
      Foods high in excess cholesterol and saturated fat wreak havoc on your vascular system by clogging the arteries and restricting blood flow. Aim for blood pressure lower than 120/80 and cholesterol levels lower than 200 mg/dL. Limit red meat and high-fat dairy and loading half of your plate with fresh fruits and vegetables and the other half with whole grains and lean protein can help you get there.

      1. Pick up the pace.
      For every pound of fat, your heart has to pump blood through an extra mile’s worth of blood vessels. Along with diet, 30 minutes of exercise on most days of the week can help you maintain a healthy weight. And remember, being active doesn’t require long sessions at the gym. Clip on a pedometer to gauge your activity level or try a new at-home fitness trend, like the P90X fitness system.
       
    12. Thegeen
      Thinking

      Thegeen Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2008
    13. Ratso2222

      Ratso2222 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2015
    14. Nick Pyzik
      Depressed

      Nick Pyzik Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      6/23/15
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Listening to in-ear headphones & playing in a band
      Although small amounts of ringing in the head may not affect a person over time, the worse ones hearing becomes the stronger the person could develop dementia/alzheimers. You can find articles stating this issue just by searching hearing loss and cognitive issues.


      52cd0657d1868fe023adab917c5783e7.jpg
      A well functioning hearing system is needed for a brain to be healthy.
       
    15. Andrew Bailey
      Balanced

      Andrew Bailey Member

      Location:
      Whitley bay
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise damage - caused by a power tool.
      That's a new one on me!!
       
    16. Andrew Bailey
      Balanced

      Andrew Bailey Member

      Location:
      Whitley bay
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise damage - caused by a power tool.
      I think to much prolonged use of alcohol is much more likely to give anyone dementia! than any form of tinnitus. when you think how is puddles your brain!!
       
    17. Nick Pyzik
      Depressed

      Nick Pyzik Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      6/23/15
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Listening to in-ear headphones & playing in a band
      Yes alcohol is a terrible drug for your brain over time and depending how much you use it but tinnitus is looked at by us and researchers as just some ringing sound in ones head. If your tinnitus happened because of noise then you've damaged neurotransmitting nerves that allow the brain to be stimulated by sound the way it should be. If it's tinnitus created by medication, stress, toxins, then I'm not sure. But I know for a fact out of everything I've read, noise is on the top of the list for causing tinnitus. We feel depressed when we get tinnitus because of this damage to the nerve fibers, we don't get the "emotions" we were able to get before from these neurotransmitting synapses. All of these things are so microscopic that we aren't even going to feel any damage, but the damage is displayed through the ringing sensation.

      Now unless you have only slightly damaged your hearing through some noise and can still function then you're fine. But the people with much more severe damage in time will be linked to cognitive, emotional, and memory problems.

      1) http://www.aarp.org/health/brain-health/info-07-2013/hearing-loss-linked-to-dementia.html

      2) http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/news...loss_linked_to_accelerated_brain_tissue_loss_

      3) https://www.beltone.com/hearing-health/alzheimers-and-hearing-loss.aspx

      4) http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/a...hrinkage-lead-dementia-researchers-claim.html
       
    18. Vinnitus
      Bookworm

      Vinnitus Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Amsterdam
      Tinnitus Since:
      28/04/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Yes, from everything I read, I still believe Alzheimer's development and hearing loss are closely related. I also fear the importance of proper hearing is greatly, greatly underestimated because the effects of impaired hearing are spread over such a long period of time. It might turn out to be one of the most important things in our existence, yet there is next to no awareness about it.

      Our brains blossom on auditory input.
       
    19. SeekIngAlpha

      SeekIngAlpha Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2003
      Brillant observations
       
    20. LadyDi
      Busy

      LadyDi Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Florida, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Barotrauma/airplane
      Wow, thanks @SeekIngAlpha. I wrote that post a long time ago! But I still feel the same way about the question.
       

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