Chronic severe tinnitus getting worse.

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by object16, Sep 4, 2013.

tinnitus forum
    1. object16
      Magical

      object16 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      1988
      Hi, I am a 57 year old pathologist, and I used to use hearing protectors almost constantly while working, due to the noisy office printers, and I like to concentrate with quiet. Also I used to use hearing protection constantly while sleeping. This led to a severe hyperaccusis condition, that was getting quite bad by 1989 or so, and then just driving the automobile would now trigger tinnitus. I was admitted to hospital in 1992 due to unable to sleep due to tinnitus, and the low frequency rumbling of trains would spike the tinnitus, even though the rumbling was very quiet and barely noticeable to a normal person. They mis-diagnosed me with depression, and so I got hooked on amytriptiline for sleep, and with higher and higher doses 400-500mg, which is toxic, so I switched to cannabis, and that helped me for a while, but I was still using hearing protection at night, so my hyperaccusis and tinnitus was not being treated properly, so kept getting worse. Finally I got a visit from law enforcement, and they charged with narcotics, and i had to go to drug rehab. As a result of the constant noise in rehab, I lost about 30dB of hearing. The hyperaccusis cleared up, but I still had a moderate amount of tinnitus. They said nothing could be done for it, but since I tried to kill myself, they felt I was "agitated" and so put me on seroquel. As a result of seroquel, finally I could sleep, and function reasonably o.k. and get back to work. The problem occurred last year when I was playing the stereo too loud for about 30 minutes, and then 3 days later all of a sudden the tinnitus got screaming loud. That was one year ago. During the past year, it gradually eased up a bit, but then the muffler on my car broke, and tinnitus went beserk, and then a truck backfire also made it go beserk, and last week I had dental work to install crowns which means a lot of dental grinding, and the tinnitus went just insane. I use seroquel, mirtazapine, and doxylamine, and yesterday i went to emergency dept of hospital and the gave me 15mg of imovane. Even before I went to sleep last night it seemed like tinnitus was not as screaming loud, and after sleeping with the imovane, the tinnitus is just moderate, and I can still cope with living.

      Is this pretty normal? I am 57 and I want to keep working - what is the chance for me to keep working long-term?

      Due to my bad experience with noise, now at all times I use a Bose noise-cancellation headset, the kind of device used to kill aircraft noises with. I play an MP3 player through the Bose, with the sound of Restful Rain, in order to provide a low level of wide-bandwidth pink noise. I notice my hyperaccusis is kind of bad, and I always ask people to speak more quiet. I cannot tolerate noises like shopping carts clanging, motorcycles, bad muffler vehicles, loud trucks etc., so I just always wear the Bose during the day, except in the office where I have a white noise generator going all the time. At night time I have the Restful Rain CD playing contantly at a low level, just below the tinnitus, because I am trying to TRT treat the tinnitus with the rainfall pink noise. Is it o.k. to wear the Bose headset almost constantly, because I can't risk a sudden loud motorcycle or truck back-fire; this has caused me immense grief in the past. And no way can I possibly get any more dental work.

      Does this all sound pretty typical. I am so frightened that I lose my job or have to resign for medical reasons, and my family still needs me to provide support.

      thanks, I am really glad I found this forum. - yours truly, paul m.
       
    2. Danny
      Fine

      Danny Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Near Toronto Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      2012
      Hey fellow canuck< all normal. Hang tough, you will learn to cope, trust me, I myself found reading the book TRT retraining help ease some of my concerns. I to wear ear buds to block out my noise, I use crickets and cicadas to help ease my noise and anxiety levels, unfortunately not allowed to wear them at work but off duty I use them a lot when I need to. There is much support here at tinnitus talk, just read thru some of the articles.
      Good Luck
      Danny
       
      • Like Like x 1
    3. James
      No Mood

      James Member Benefactor

      Location:
      California
      Tinnitus Since:
      Pulsing 03/2013
      object16, I fight with my annoying Tinnitus every day. It almost seems worse lately. I’d rather I just ignore it. I couldn’t do what you do with the ear protection. I listen to a small radio in bed, till I fall asleep. Otherwise I listen to everything I can, but if too loud, move.
      I didn’t even think there was any treatment. My approach was to just get on with my life, and do everything I could, Party, work. Try to be engaged or involved with things, for my brain to block it out. It’s loud alright.

      You not alone, it seems like the only people that can understand this is ones who suffer too.
      That’s why this forum works. I hope you the best. Don't even think its getting worse.
       
    4. jazz
      No Mood

      jazz Member Benefactor

      Location:
      US
      Tinnitus Since:
      8/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      eardrum rupture from virus; barotrauma from ETD
      @object16 Are you seeing an audiologist? With tinnitus and hyperacusis, I would get professional treatment. You must find an audiologist who specializes in tinnitus treatment.

      With your hearing loss, an audiologist will probably fit you with a hearing aid that also offers chimes or white noise to use with TRT. WidexZen has a good model; so does Starkey's Xino Tinnitus. ReSound also has a hearing aid with tinnitus control features.

      Here's a link to Widex, Canada. There are more studies with this hearing aid than the other ones. But they are probably all equally effective. Please know that an audiologist will also use sound therapy to treat your hyperacusis:

      http://www.widex.ca/en/products/thewidexsound/zen/

      There is also a detailed discussion on hearing aids on TT. Here's the link:

      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/hearing-aids.676/

      A tinnitus book I've found useful is The Tinnitus Treatment Toolbox. You can get it on Amazon.

      You might also be interested in cognitive behavioral therapy. It can be tailored specifically for tinnitus sufferers. There's lots of favorable research on this therapy. Here's a pubmed link to one of several studies:

      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23287811

      Good Luck! And do examine all the wonderful resources available on TT!! You are not alone.
       
      • Like Like x 3
    5. object16
      Magical

      object16 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      1988
      Hi, I have gone to the local audiologist who has a masters degree in it, and has done as much reading about it as she can. I keep in touch with Dhyan Cassie who is affiliated and gives lecture for the ATA, and the ATA support leaders, like Ken in Philadelphia, who has gone to all the top experts, and gives me moral support understanding encouragement. I tried the neuromonics device I year ago, and it was not working for me, so I had to return it. Gradually my tinnitus was getting better by using white noise generators etc but then a sudden noise from a broken exhaust in my car, and then a loud Harley Davidson, and now the dental crown grinding noise made it a whole lot worse, so I am looking at exit strategy etc.

      I talked to one internist who suggested Lyrica of gabapentin might give me a bit of help with sleeping, and the people who do my drug monitoring are familiar with it, so I might be able to give this a try, as a crutch to help me keep going ... I am already elibible for early retirement, but inactivity is bad for me, and if I put in one more year my pension and finances will be so much more better off. At that point I could consider some alternative pain medical sedative things that are controversial, but i just need some relief so i can sleep.

      I ordered a sound pillow, which might help me as well.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    6. jazz
      No Mood

      jazz Member Benefactor

      Location:
      US
      Tinnitus Since:
      8/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      eardrum rupture from virus; barotrauma from ETD
      @object16 Glad you got the sound pillow! You know how important sleep is. There's much discussion on TT regarding drugs like gabapentin. I know some people do find relief, but for many others the side effects are worse than the noise. This is probably the best link to start your research on the board: https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/medications-used-for-tinnitus.1179/

      Regarding hearing aids, I know your hearing loss is slight. My threshold is also 30db from 4000 hz through 6000 hz. But these frequencies are also the ones most responsible for tinnitus. Many studies on hearing aids argue that even those with mild hearing loss will experience improvement. For such people, like myself, it's not about amplifying the background noises to drown out the tinnitus. Rather, it's about stimulating the auditory cortex with the high frequency sounds it must be lacking. If hearing aid makers focused on tinnitus, they could perhaps develop a device that effectively suppresses the noise in most people. Just take the people with cochlear implants. The implants may be an effective tool for reducing or eliminating tinnitus. But they must be set for tinnitus relief--not to maximize hearing. This is why some people with cochlear implants say their tinnitus was not helped. It's all about the settings.

      Of course. I'd prefer a cure. But realistically the next few years won't yield anything groundbreaking--at least for people with chronic tinnitus. It's disgraceful that tinnitus receives such a small share of research monies. But that's a topic for another post.
       
    7. Relic Hunter
      Cynical

      Relic Hunter Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/1990
      object16, I am new to the forum here but not new to the hell of T. I understand you pain and I have been down the same road. I have had T for years but it only worsened a few years ago. I am now 62 but believe it got worse due to stress and not age.

      I am retired. I do not know if I could work with this as it destroys by concentration..I use white noise hearing aid maskers, sound machines etc. I sleep with a fan running all year long. I do not have as much trouble sleeping as I once did but my sleep is never restful. I have some relief with drugs such as clonazepam which I took for several years but came off of this addictive drug a year ago. I have a lot of anxiety mostly due to the T and will be talking to my Dr. about going back on another anxiety drug..I am a FIRM believer that T. feeds off of stress so stress must be reduced.

      I have hearing aids with built in masker, also aids with just maskers..The maskers are the most help. I even wear them to bed on the bad days. Try aids that are fully programmable to your hearing loss. Most insurance co's will not cover aids so buy form a source that will allow at least a 60 day trial basis.

      I have tried just about everything and willing to try anything..What helps for one does nothing for another, so I hesitate to recommend or condemn anything.

      It is good to have a place as this to come and just talk..NO ONE except us who have T will ever understand. I know my family nor friends do and I am sure most people here will say the same.
       
    8. object16
      Magical

      object16 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      1988
      Thanks for the support Relic Hunter - guys like you help me to keep a positive attitude. My hearing has declined, but not to the point of hearing aid. This makes me more optimistic that I can work with what I've got, and if I can apply the correct re-training to my brain, then probably I'll be at the point where live is more pleasant, and I'm not thinking about where to get my nembutal etc. I let my dentist know that there can be no more drilling - he will do his best to keep my teeth intact, but if I need extractions/false teeth etc., that is far better than getting worse tinnitus.
       

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