Can Masking Stop Tinnitus from Getting Centralized in the Brain?

Discussion in 'Support' started by matt89, Mar 14, 2016.

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    1. matt89
      Studious

      matt89 Member Benefactor Team Tech Team Awareness

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Just wondering.

      There's an assumption that tinnitus gets centralized in the brain after 3 months or more (scientists are unsure about the period). After the period the brain assigns it to the normal ambient noises and tinnitus becomes chronic.
      So what if someone gets tinnitus and masks it 24h/7d a week. Can he trick out the brain and stay in the acute phase (where T is not centralized in the brain) because the brain cannot differ the T sound from the masking sound?
       
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    2. Alue

      Alue Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      I have wondered this too. Somehow I doubt it. Maybe if the T is very faint form onset and someone has to be in a quiet environment to even hear it.

      I have also wondered if focusing on it in the early stages causes it to be more ingrained or ingrained faster. Something that is difficult for me not to do.

      Hell when it first started I wondered if I were to be put into a medically induced coma for 3 months if that would prevent it from being permanent. If it were an option and I knew it had a high chance for success I would have signed up for it.
       
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    3. matt89
      Studious

      matt89 Member Benefactor Team Tech Team Awareness

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Don't think this works. In my opinion the phase where the brain gets adjusted to the T sound is the sleep.
      The brain is very active during the sleep (especially the REM sleep - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rapid_eye_movement_sleep).
      You know that you hear your alarm clock in the morning independent of how deep you're sleeping.
      And T (especially if you're new to it) wakes you up during the night because your brain maybe thinks it's the sound of an alarm clock or just something unusal.

      So I think sleep is the main phase where the brain gets habituated to the T sound and centralizes it after a certain period of time.

      Therefore I think the thesis should be taken into account that if you mask T 24h/7d in the acute phase you can maybe delay the period in which the brain centralizes the T sound or even stop the brain entirely from getting used to it.
      Maybe this enables someone with acute T to benefit from treatments in the future.
       
    4. Fangen
      Playful

      Fangen Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Stockholm, Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      December 2nd, 2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma (loud concert for 1h)
      I wouldn't read too much into the assumptions. I know there are science for it, but since it can and have gone away for people within within 6-12 months, which would be outside the acute phase (and centralized) in the brain and become chronic. So I believe, like with T in general, that it differs a lot from everybody. Also, I see that yours are noise-induced like mine, I think our are more prone to be chronic since we are most likely to have physical damage to our ear/ear cells. But that also means that if we are to be lucky enough that the cells or nerves to not have died off completely, but just taking it slow time to heal, that means that the T might stop one day too. But regardless, there is no point of trying to wait and hope for it to go away. It might sound really terrible to hear, but the best thing is to try to accept it and embrace it for now, and if it does go away, that is a big bonus but if it does not, at least you have learned to live with it and maybe not even hear it anymore (in the sense that you stop paying attention for it).

      All the best,
      F.
       
    5. matt89
      Studious

      matt89 Member Benefactor Team Tech Team Awareness

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Any evidence that damaged hair cells because of an acoustic trauma can heal on its own? Never have heard/read about it.
       
    6. InfiniteLoop
      Sunshine

      InfiniteLoop Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Redwood City, California
      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Not sure. Very high frequency hearing loss (>8KHz)
      @matt89

      There are some studies with animals (cats or mice, I do not recall well) showing that after acoustic induced trauma, animals exposed to sound enrichment did not develop T compared to the group that were not exposed to significant sound after the trauma. As many of these animal model studies, results are difficult to extrapolate to humans. I can dig up the reference, it is one of the last chapters of "The Neuroscience of Tinnitus" by Jos J. Eggermont
       
    7. Fangen
      Playful

      Fangen Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Stockholm, Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      December 2nd, 2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma (loud concert for 1h)
      They can as long as they have not died off completly. We cannot regenerate new cells. But if they do heal, its like folding a paper. Once you fold it, you'll see line, and it will be easier for you to fold it next time. You will be prone to damage easier than the first time.
      But cells and nerves can also die slowly, which can make T louder. It is really hard to know where you are, and as far as I know, no doctor are able to see the status of your cells.
       
    8. matt89
      Studious

      matt89 Member Benefactor Team Tech Team Awareness

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      A hair cell is uprooted/dead = hearing loss. A hair cell is snapped off = T + H (H depends on the extend of snapping).
      But can you show any medical evidence which substantiates your thesis that a snapped off hair cell straightens up on its own (means heals)? (I mean after someone has finished with therapies like steriod infusions, hyperbaric chamber, etc.)
      This kind of thesis is new to me.

      Agreeing to this statement. After experiencing noise-induced T you should do everything to keep the resulting damage to the lowest possible level.
       
    9. Fangen
      Playful

      Fangen Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Stockholm, Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      December 2nd, 2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma (loud concert for 1h)
      I have to look it up tomorrow, on my phone right now.

      Agreed. There are divided opinions in how to do that. Some will die regardless if you sit in silence forever and some might be saved if you're careful.
      I have plugs with me. I use them in cinemas, noisy restaurants or bars. I avoid going to those places but sometimes you cant predict where you end up. So plugs are good, i dont see harm if you use plugs when you feel its too loud. I have been exposed to sudden high noises that lasted seconds but yeah, life is life. Sometimes you can't protect yourself from that. I haven't felt it has increased my T further. However TMJ might be the reason for my current increase.
      Wearing plugs all the time is not good either as you already know. You can develop H and well.. nobody wants T and H..
       
    10. Alue

      Alue Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Where are you getting this from. It's possible, but I don't think it's as simple as that. You can damage auditory nerves in addition to the hairs, you can actually have nerve connections damaged while the hairs themselves stay in tact. http://www.jneurosci.org/content/29/45/14077.full.pdf is a real interesting study talking about cochlear nerve degeneration.

      Actually, the more that I think about it, chronic "head" tinnitus would make more sense to be cause by degeneration in the nerves rather than just the hair cells themselves.

      A quote from the article I linked:

       
    11. matt89
      Studious

      matt89 Member Benefactor Team Tech Team Awareness

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      After viewing the study the probability of auditory nerve damages is given especially in case of hearing loss.
      If you experience tinnitus without hearing loss or maybe minor acceptable hearing loss in most cases the surface of the hair cells which have processed the frequency/ies of an acoustic trauma got damaged. They snap off which causes tinnitus but no or maybe minor accetable hearing loss.
       
    12. Alue

      Alue Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      But this is temporary hearing loss. You go to a loud concert or hear a loud bang and your hearing is muffled for a few hours/days then gets better. Well the damage can continue after thresholds return.
       
    13. object16
      Magical

      object16 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      1988
      that may have been my problem: i was so worried, after i had minor tinnitus, that i would wear hearing protection all the time, which gave me a big dose of hyper accusis, and after that, it was all down hill. that would have been 30 yrs ago. now i'm a total mess.
       
    14. Alue

      Alue Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      I can relate to this, though I'm still in the early stages. I don't know what to think. The first few weeks masking helped me sleep at night, then I discovered it didn't help and after a while trying to mask just seems to make things worse. My T settles down slightly if I'm in a quiet environment.
       
    15. Fangen
      Playful

      Fangen Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Stockholm, Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      December 2nd, 2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma (loud concert for 1h)
      @matt89
      I see that Alue has already linked a little for you to read. I also found this http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2812055/, which probably have been floating around there for a while but still more info if you like.
      Like you see, it is really hard to know when you are overprotecting and when you are not. I try to live my life as much as possible in the same way without earplugs but put them in, in places I never would have. Bars, restaurants, movies. As you unfortunately see, too much usage of earplugs will often lead to H, and from what I know, T and H is a total b**ch together.

      Same here. I honestly feel that my T screams through whatever sound relief I try to use, so I stopped doing that the first week. I sleep in a quiet environment like I always have, at first the T seems really loud but feels like it quiets down after a while (or I just start drifting into sleep). I do feel that somebody else sleeping next to me is more of a sound relief than regular rainfall/ambient music. My boyfriend breathing in his sleep (you breath more heavily) kind of blocks out the buzzing I have even if my high pitch noise still cuts through it. But at least it feels a little less obvious and the fact that someone is there in case you feel like shit is also a mental relief.
       

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