Are Spikes from Loud Noise Permanent?

Discussion in 'Support' started by Michael Leigh, Oct 20, 2016.

    1. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Ambassador

      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Are spikes from loud noise permanent?

      Someone recently asked me, whether a spike in tinnitus caused by loud noise would be permanent? I don’t think there is a definitive answer, because tinnitus is a complex condition and if hyperacusis is also present it can complicate matters further. Some people habituate to tinnitus but their hyperacusis hasn’t fully cured and this can cause tinnitus to spike.

      When a person first develops tinnitus and it was caused by loud noise they have to be careful in future. Tinnitus can and does spike for many people and this is not necessarily caused by loud noise or sounds. After a while it usually returns to baseline or into its normal rhythm. Danger can present itself after a person habituates and the tinnitus has reduced to mild or moderate levels for most of the time. If one isn’t careful, it can be easy to forget and slip back into the old lifestyle of: listening to music through headphones. Attending clubs, concerts and the cinema where sound levels can be quite high.

      I believe a person with tinnitus should attend clubs, concerts and the cinema if they want to, providing they use noise-reducing earplugs to protect themselves. However, one should remember that nothing is one hundred percent safe. My advice is to stay clear of large standing floor speakers and if you’re at a concert don’t go to near the front stage where the music is likely to be booming out at high sound levels.

      In many instances people will get a warning when visiting these places. If the decibel levels are too high their tinnitus might spike. Usually the tinnitus will return to baseline. However, some people do not pay attention to these warnings and continue to subject their ears to loud sounds and think they are perfectly safe because they are wearing earplugs. Under these circumstances the tinnitus might spike again and this time it might become permanent. I am saying might because nothing is for certain. In my opinion a person with tinnitus needs to follow the warnings their auditory system and tinnitus is telling them.

      Regarding headphones. Many people have contacted me after they have habituated to tinnitus and returned to using headphones and listened to music through them at low volume. All of them have noticed an increase in their tinnitus. Some of them noticed their tinnitus spiked but carried on listening to music through headphones and then the tinnitus increased to a higher and more permanent level. It must be said that some people with tinnitus use headphones and have no adverse effects and that is perfectly fine. My opinion on this is, anyone that has tinnitus shouldn’t listen to any type of audio through headphones even at low level.

      It saddens to say, if a person doesn’t heed the warning signs their auditory system and tinnitus is telling them, then they will eventually feel because tinnitus is very unforgiving. It is fine when some people are telling others what they want to hear: "listen to music through headphones because life is for living".Go to the club as often as possible you’re safe with earplugs. If your tinnitus increases you will be the one that will be in the suffering.

      I have read many posts in tinnitus talk, where people had habituated and the tinnitus is low. They returned to listening to music through headphones and clubbing during the week and weekends. Some are now regretting this because their tinnitus has increased and they are in distress. Just because a person habituates doesn't mean they can forget everything and carry on in some instances recklessly. You can of course do this but my advice is to do things in moderation and not to excess, because the end result is often returning to ENT for help and visiting tinnitus forums because you are unable to cope.

      • Agree Agree x 4
    2. Pleasure_Paulie

      Pleasure_Paulie Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus: idea.. unicorns?
      Great post - a voice of logical reason! Thanks for your contribution :)

      Use tinnitus as a warming signal that something has gone wrong in your auditory system. Play it safe, be smart and don't forget to carry ear protection with you wherever you go - I carry 2 sets of earplugs on my keyring.
    3. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Ambassador

      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      @Pleasure_Paulie Thanks for your kind words they are much apprecitated. I like the fact that you carry 2 sets of earplugs on your keyring, a smart thing to do!
    4. Tim Hogan

      Tim Hogan Member

      UK, England
      Tinnitus Since:
      June 2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Cold/Flu (Minor) >>> Botched Acoustic Reflex Test (Severe)
      yes 100% im living proof.

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