Do You Ever Habituate to Complete Silence (Silent Room)?

Discussion in 'Support' started by bodhisattva, Oct 23, 2014.

tinnitus forum
    1. bodhisattva

      bodhisattva Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2014
      I feel like as long as i can keep a fan running, some white noise, city noise etc i can handle this stuff. But when i am in complete silence it's nearly unbearable.

      I'm fairly new to this game, so my question for you vets is, do you ever get to the point that you can be (or possibly even sleep) in a completely silent room?

      I sure miss being able to meditate.
       
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    2. awbw8
      Balanced

      awbw8 Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2013
      Hey there @bodhisattva, if you can handle T in any setting within he same month you got it, then I have absolutely no doubt you will be able to handle it in silence eventually.

      It was months for me before I could handle it in any condition (maybe 8 to a year) and then at the 1 year 5 months mark, I just stopped needed any kind of sound-soother for sleep. I live in the city so I do have some traffic noises, but I am fine in a silent room now - sleeping or waking, even though the T is ringing/buzzing/hissing away. I can definitely meditate as well/happily etc. as I did before. In fact, I would say that T made my meditation practice stronger. The point of it, for me, is to put aside physical discomforts and distractions to reach that inner place. If you can get there through T, that is just a step in the right direction. Habituating to T was a meditation for me, one that I do daily :)

      The T is just a part of my silence now and 99.9% of the time, it doesn't bother me at all.

      You will get there, good for you for being so well adjusted already.
       
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    3. sandra72

      sandra72 Member

      Location:
      Netherlands
      Tinnitus Since:
      may 2014
      I really love this post. I have it for 7 months now and it still can get me down. But it goes better than when i just have T. I am not there yet but hope i will someday.
       
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    4. carol kane
      Wishful

      carol kane Member

      Location:
      Lincolnshire united kingdom
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/13
      @ sandra72, you will get there,you sound good about it now and the months will just keep getting better and better !!! good luck x
       
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    5. RicoS
      Confused

      RicoS Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Netherlands
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Stress or Acoustic trauma
      I cannot sleep in a complete silent room it is to loud. Always have birdsounds on very low volume. The lowest possible, but I need a little sound otherwise it 's like somebody is blowing a wistle of a referee in my ear :) It's realy weird that it can be so loud when there is no sound but the slidest little sound can make it go away completly
       
    6. bodhisattva

      bodhisattva Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2014
      I talked to a doc here in Nashville (good doc, recommended by Dr Nagler) who said that these sounds are really only ...4 to maybe 14 decibels which is quieter than a whisper. But it still sounds pretty damned loud huh?
       
    7. mahomsy

      mahomsy Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Montreal, QC, Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2013
      Though I've never had a trouble sleeping in a silent room with my T (when I'm tired, I fall asleep in minutes), I do have trouble focusing in a silent room. I'm a medical student so that means that studying on the desk in my bedroom is very challenging for the sole fact that my tinnitus constantly "reminds me" to think about it, thereby distracting me. I usually study in the library but when I do have to work at home I try and play a bit of white noise in the background to make the ringing less noticeable.

      Upon habituation I do want to be able to study/focus/work/everything in a silent room the same way as everyone with no T would be able to do. Otherwise, I feel like we are putting ourselves at a disadvantage by always fleeing inevitable moments of "silence".
       
    8. bodhisattva

      bodhisattva Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2014
      Same here, it's almost like relying on a drug, to have to have distracting white noise to drown out the T. I guess maybe we should practice being in a silent room and getting used to it for short periods of time, then increase those periods of time until we can handle it.

      Right now it's a little much. For me anyway.

      I think one of the best quotes i've read about this is from William Shatner, he said "it's not a sound you'd want to hear" .. if it was a constant babbling brook it would be one thing but a damned piercing 'eeeeeeeeeeeee' is not easy to tune out.
       
    9. mahomsy

      mahomsy Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Montreal, QC, Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2013
      Agreed. On good days when I have no stress and am in a good mood, I can work in complete silence. But when I am stressed (which is unfortunately often), the T makes it 20 times to focus. As you said though, one step at a time. In an ideal world, you'd increase your time in silence day by day, week by week until it becomes a no brainer. Easier said than done though, right?

      You mentioned seeing a doctor in Nashville. Are you considering going to a Tinnitus clinic for some therapy of some sort? I've become increasingly keen on the idea of TRT lately... anything to speed up the habituation process and get me back to 100%.
       
    10. bodhisattva

      bodhisattva Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2014
      Yeah i'm going to go to a Tinnitus clinic... I'd like to know more about TRT. I hope there is something out there that can help. I keep hearing there is a cure on the way and that the pharma companies are getting interested.

      DAMN this ringing just got louder, WTF? ah, this is the gift that keeps on giving huh? ha...
       
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    11. mahomsy

      mahomsy Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Montreal, QC, Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2013
      Maybe I'm an optimist but pharma goes where the money goes. It seems like there is a lot of investment and interest recently in a cure. The way I see it, it's only a matter of time until a drug is released that alleviates (or possibly eliminates) tinnitus. Could be 10 years, could be 20. Who's to say. In the meanwhile, find what helps you and focus on it. ;)
       
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    12. Magpie
      Sporty

      Magpie Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/15/1999
      I feel like as long as i can keep a fan running, some white noise, city noise etc i can handle this stuff. But when i am in complete silence it's nearly unbearable.
      I'm fairly new to this game, so my question for you vets is, do you ever get to the point that you can be (or possibly even sleep) in a completely silent room?
      I sure miss being able to meditate.



      Why should there be any concern about having silence or sounds when you are trying to fall asleep. Sometimes it seems that T people feel they need to comply with some sort of guidelines/rules or they are a failure. Take your example "sleeping in or even existing in a quiet room" When it's all said and done who cares if the room is quiet or noisy or whatever the only thing that is important is that you aren't freaking out about your tinnitus. I think everybody needs to throw out the rule book and just do what they want and if this makes their tinnitus less of a problem then that's all that matters.

      To answer your question otherwise, my T is like a freaking siren going off 24/7 and it cannot be masked. I don't need to go into a quiet room and even if it is only a few db's above hearing threshold it feels like it's 100db's. But I have no issue falling asleep now and that's because I have little or no reaction to it now. Once I couldn't read a book but now I read without issues.
       
    13. SoulStation
      No Mood

      SoulStation Member Ambassador Team Tech

      Location:
      New York
      Tinnitus Since:
      2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise / Possible Medication
      I will almost everyday go to my closet and close the door to sit in the quiet room. What happens with my t is very interesting. With in 5-10minutes of me sitting in my walk in closet my perception of the more "eeee" t sound goes much lower ...it's when I'm driving or hearing certain frequencies that it becomes more "irritated". I think the fact that the silence helps my T go down is strange but understandable because it seems like sounds make it react more than lack there of.
       
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    14. Relic Hunter
      Cynical

      Relic Hunter Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/1990
      A simple answer for me is NO. I have slept for so long with a fan as well as a sound machine. On the occasion that I lose power and it suddenly goes graveyard quiet I awake.
       
    15. RicoS
      Confused

      RicoS Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Netherlands
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Stress or Acoustic trauma
      The weird thing for me is when I wake up and my birdsounds are turned off for some reason I hardly hear it. But 20 min after wake up my brain starts focussing on it. From people who do TRT I hear they always have some background sound or wear earpeaces that give whitenoise but less loud than there T so they can adjust. For me that does not work because even the slidest sound blocks my loud T completely.
      But does it matter? Does it really matter how you can get your own break out of T. If you can sleep with a fan on and you sleep well than that is fine....if you can sleep without a fan on it's fine too. I know I can sleep without the backgroundsounds, but my T will be so loud that falling a sleep takes more time and I need my daily rest.
      I do no go in panic mode anymore so habitation is in proces...but what is fully habitated? I don't like it that I cannot sit in complete silence and not hear my T. But I guess dat habitation is that you can still hear it but don't go crazy over it and go on with your life.
      When I hear it it bothers my....but what can I do ...there is no switch to turn in off so why bother stress about it.
      I hate it to the upmost, but in my mind I gave up on it I guess. I do not want to spend more energy on it.
       
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    16. Telis

      Telis Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Calgary
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2013
      I can sit in a quiet environment just as easily as I can sit in a environment rich with sound. Am I habituated...na not at all. My T is loud and high pitched so I can hear it all the time anyway. If the sounds are loud enough to partially mask my T, my H kicks up and my T also creeps up higher and higher. I wish I could mask effectively.
       
    17. OddV
      Assassinator

      OddV Member Benefactor

      Location:
      USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      09/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear Infection
      How did he determine that it was only 4 to 14 db? I was in the car yesterday and used a sound meter, it was 70 db in the car and I could still hear the T... does that mean that's how loud mine is?
       
    18. Zechariah

      Zechariah Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Finland
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      I would be in heaven if the smallest sound could block my T... :)
       
    19. bodhisattva

      bodhisattva Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2014
      I honestly have no idea. I'm still pretty new to this and sometimes it feels like the more i read or talk about it the more power i give it. At the same time it helps to talk about it... who knows.

      I'm sure they can't really measure something so subjective, but i was just sharing what i heard. Plus regardless of the decibel level, there is the factor of proximity. I mean it's in your head/ear so...

      Sorry for all you fellow sufferers out there, it's a tough day today. Stress makes this stuff worse for sure.
       
    20. bodhisattva

      bodhisattva Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2014
      Thanks awbw8! It's a day by day battle sometimes till then huh? Get used to it.. get ok, then it kicks your ass, then you get used to it again. Just keep fighting folks, there are too many people on this board who have adapted to it and are leading good lives, to let this thing beat us.

      One thing i have found is that i try to gravitate towards things that give me strength. When i was young i was in the navy and wanted to be a SEAL, I wasn't able to make that dream come true but i watch a lot of interviews with those guys and study their approach to life and it usually pumps me up. Not always but a lot of the time, it can give me the will to persevere.

      That and exercise, sometimes initially exercise will exacerbate the ringing but it also makes me stronger and gives me those happy chemicals that make me want to get out and live.

      Anyway, i'm rambling. I need sleep, you know how it is when you haven't had enough sleep.
       
    21. Sen
      Caffeine

      Sen Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      October, 2012.
      When I'm in a completely silent room it sounds and feels like there's a vacuum sucking on my brain through my ears.
       
    22. RicoS
      Confused

      RicoS Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Netherlands
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Stress or Acoustic trauma
      hahaha I know the feeling... it fills my whole head.... very weird.
       
    23. Stina
      Psychedelic

      Stina Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Tartu
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/13
      After getting tinnitus I have never really been in a completely silent room. Even in the nature - in bogs or swamps for example - where there is nobody but myself there is always some kind of sound (wind, birds, animals..). I think silence is only possible in a soundproof room (artificially created). Maybe its easier to focus on very quiet sounds instead of silence?
       
    24. Dr. Nagler

      Dr. Nagler Member

      Location:
      Atlanta, Georgia USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/1994
      Now that I have habituated my tinnitus, I always sleep in a silent room. I have done so for the past 15+ years. And I always read in a silent room.

      stephen nagler
       
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    25. sandra72

      sandra72 Member

      Location:
      Netherlands
      Tinnitus Since:
      may 2014
      Now 7 months T and in the beginning i slept with sound but now not anymore and sleep around 8 hours. Most time when i lay down my T is low also.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    26. RCP1
      Ape-like

      RCP1 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Dublin, Ireland
      Tinnitus Since:
      122014
      Dr Nagler I just read your Letter to a Tinnitus sufferer from your time in the ATA. I found it very powerful and can see it working in practice. You are a gentleman and an altruist of the highest order. Thank you. Robert
       
    27. LeQuack
      Scared

      LeQuack Member Benefactor

      Location:
      United States of Europe
      Tinnitus Since:
      2005
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Bad luck and bad genes
      When my T was still mild i could sleep in a quiet room, it was bothersome but not so much. Now my T goes wild and if I stay too long in silent room it goes up in volume so it's impossible to sleep. It's not the T so much as it's the volume, it really become impossible to habituate to.
       
    28. Dr. Nagler

      Dr. Nagler Member

      Location:
      Atlanta, Georgia USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/1994
      Thank you for your kind words.

      stephen nagler
       
    29. nogood
      Torn

      nogood Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ototoxicity/infection
      Quiet rooms some times can handle it some times can't. Esp if i have a spike.. also at meetings in office when its very queit my mind wonders..
      I don't mask my t other than fan running in my room.
      I prefer solitude. . But its not been easy
       
    30. KingRoanoke

      KingRoanoke Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2008
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Look at what the dog is wearing.
      Silence seems painful to me, which is confusing. In terms of tinnitus, is there some biological activity going on in silence that isn't happening in ambient noise? I ask because in ambient noise I don't necessarily feel pain, or my attention isn't drawn to pain and i can forget about my T, but in silence my tinnitus can be overwhelmingly painful. Maybe pain isn't the right word...I don't know.
       

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