Fire Alarm Went Off in My Apartment — How Loud Is Fire Alarm? Can It Damage My Hearing?

Discussion in 'Support' started by PeteJ, Mar 13, 2019.

    1. PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      A fire alarm went off in my apartment. It's a low income building - you can guess what kind of people are in there.

      Yes, including me but I was in hard times a few years ago and unfortunately, stayed even after getting a job.

      Anyway, I am scared now with what could happen - I know some of it is mental but searching threads on fire alarms, they are between 80 - 120 dB?

      I was stupid - I didn't have my ear muffs by my side which I usually do. I quickly covered my ears. I got plugs and my muffs, grabbed my dog and got out. I think this is all under 10 seconds or so - I am not sure.

      When I got outside, I walked far away - enough from the building and took off the muffs. The ringing/buzzing actually stopped. I didn't hear it but maybe the hearing was muffled a bit, I don't know. I walked around until they turned it off. I wasn't exposed long but I am still worried. The buzzing returned. I'm inside, typing this message and the buzzing is going on but I don't know what to do.

      Please advise.

      I need to think of a way to leave this building. I applied for a transfer to a 'quieter' side of the building - not near the traffic side. But, I really should move but I don't know where - it's difficult because I am on low income / medical leave from work and not covered - so, I need to apply for EI and funding from the city eventually. I should say I need emergency transfer to a building but how to avoid fire alarms? My life is over, I think. It's just one disaster over another for me. :(
       
      • Hug Hug x 1
    2. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      What matters is not how loud it was, but whether you feel like there was an impact on your ears afterwards (e.g., ear fullness, new tones, louder tinnitus, different pitch).
      You don't know that, yet.
      If it is pretty much the same as it was before the fire alarm went off, and if that continues to be the case for the next 24 hours, there is a good chance that you are going to be ok.

      If you wake up tomorrow with ear fullness, much louder tinnitus, etc., then you might consider taking prednisone (assuming you can get your hands on it in your country).
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      It's 4 am here now. I doubt I can sleep (now). I'm doing breathing exercises. I'm trying not to have a panic attack.

      I was told by some people - medical nurses - over the phone (Telehealth) that it's highly unlikely I would be prescribed prednisone. :( This country is just crazy.

      If any Canadians read this, let me know if it's possible/how to get it?
       
    4. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      It is still buzzing but my standing fan helped. Or I was just that tired? I slept for just under 4 hours.

      It doesn't seem louder and I don't want to focus on it but the next 24 hrs is what to watch for? Should I get looked at?
       
      • Creative Creative x 1
    5. GSC
      Wishful

      GSC Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma.
      Take some mag and nac Pete.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    6. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      Nac?
       
    7. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      Spike calmed down. So I still have some fluctuation. Key word is some. I'm trying to see positives. I really am. :-/
       
      • Like Like x 2
    8. JuneStar
      Sheepish

      JuneStar Member

      Location:
      ny
      Tinnitus Since:
      8/18
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise induced
    9. OnceUponaTime
      Wishful

      OnceUponaTime Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Hall of Fame Advocate

      Location:
      New York
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/11
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      You should be fine. NAC may help.
       
    10. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      Can a high frequency noise hurt you? Not necessarily loud.

      Do you (anyone can answer) wear earplugs in stores or other places and how often? All the time? I ****ed up again. I am too stupid to have this and cope or protect myself. I am thinking about suicide again but seriously now. This is what I did. I went in a store I thought was safe. I was having some moderate buzzing so I thought the plugs would just make me focus on it more and the store noise would help distract myself. I didn't know their speaker system would have this high frequency sound. I had my phone with me and the decibel reader app showed a relatively low and normal decibel level. I don't know how accurate these apps are but it didn't seem loud. It was just a high frequency noise - no screeching sound. There's also electronics around, too, I guess. I am just so exhausted with risking myself, thinking any random thing can set me back or just spike my T. I don't know how others do it but how many have it as severe? I don't know about most people but mine seems like a 10/10 on the excessively loud scale. I am always scared about 'losing my fluctuation' and that is the only thing that makes me go on hoping.
       
    11. Jack Straw
      Balanced

      Jack Straw Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame Advocate

      Location:
      US
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990s
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Infection, Acoustic Trauma
      The spike has calmed down. This is a good thing. This should be helping you relax that you didn’t cause any permanent damage. Fluctuations in tinnitus are also a normal thing. My tinnitus fluctuates all damn day. People get tinnitus spikes all the time and it takes some time to subside. Please try to relax.

      Please realize that anxiety and stress has an effect on our limbic system which has a direct effect on our tinnitus perception. Please remember this. Stress and anxiety can temporarily affect our tinnitus by making us perceive it louder. This is a proven fact.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    12. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      What about high frequencies (in general)? Can that do damage or is just causing a temporary spike? Please read my latest/previous post. I am constantly told to relax and manage stress but it seems there is always *something* that will or may occur - something that causes a spike or is an impact on an already malfunctioning brain/auditory system. If I have any chance of it improving (even a little - for it to get a more manageable/tolerable level for longer), how do I prevent these 'dangerous' or potentially dangerous situations? It seems futile and it seems like I have to constantly wear ear plugs? How much time is acceptable to pass (putting in ear plugs right away is enough or) before it's bad?
       
    13. Jack Straw
      Balanced

      Jack Straw Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame Advocate

      Location:
      US
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990s
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Infection, Acoustic Trauma
      Literally no one can answer this question because no one knows. Not even doctors or researchers. Sound is sound. The type of sound, high frequency vs low makes no difference usually. Higher frequencies are easier to protect I think with hearing protection so you are at an advantage here.

      I would suggest going to see someone regarding your anxiety and trying to lower it.
       
    14. Digital Doc

      Digital Doc Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise induced
      I have learned by trial and error some stores have issues for me. For example, some supermarkets are ok, but one has a ridiculous PA system that is damn loud, so I wear my plugs. Also, another store plays loud music, but only on the weekends, so I protect from that as well. Home Dept with the forklifts also makes me nervous so I used them last time I was there.

      BTW, I like the musician earplugs (Knock off of Eargasm from Avantek from Amazon) that filter out the louder sounds, but still let me hear speech ok.

      If this keeps happening, and not sure when to protect, just try wearing the earplugs when going to stores, and see if it makes a difference for a week, and the decide if some places are quiet enough to stop wearing them.
       
    15. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      I have a terrible spike since 6 pm tonight.... now after 8:30. The boiling kettle sound again. :(
      This is too much... I just want to sleep. I didn't get NAC - stores are closed. I only have one positive thing to say but it's just getting tiring and exhausting.

      I went to the drug store, in a mall, to look for NAC. There was some event going on. So, lots of people. I was wearing ear plugs the entire time in there. I went into the drug store but they didn't have any NAC - probably have to go to a health food store. Anyway, I left and went out the closest exit. On my way home, the T practically stopped - I was wearing ear plugs but all I could hear is the snow I was stepping on. No buzzing at all. I was outside, though, but with the plugs in, it's most noticeable, right? I didn't hear anything except my steps. I took my plugs out and I didn't hear anything. But, this was short-lived although it seemed like several minutes.

      It just fluctuates, though, right? The buzzing eventually came back. So, this is the pattern? I keep looking for signs of improvement and it getting better, but, I'm just under the impression I have to wait or this is probably just going to be the pattern to get used to it? Sorry, but, I don't see myself habituating to this. This spike right now is so intense and crippling. I don't know how I'm going to sleep. I have this probably practically every night now. I don't know how it settled down after the fire alarm last night but it sorta did. I drowned out the buzzing with my standing fan and only because it somewhat calmed down, it seemed to lower in volume a little and probably I was really tired - I made valerian root herbal tea - dunno if that helped. But, the current buzzing tonight is too loud. I tried to lie down with the fan to no avail. I'm encouraged to tolerate this for months or years? I don't see it. :(
       
    16. GSC
      Wishful

      GSC Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma.

      You experienced silence, Pete? That's a good sign.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    17. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      I thought so. But, it's rare and not as often as before - although, this seemed close enough to silence and not the white noise/hiss I would occasionally experience (previously - before 'noise/sound incidents'). I think it was probably not silence per se as I was outside but when I had plugs in, I couldn't hear the buzzing or even white noise so who knows. I don't know if it's a good sign but it was temporary relief for once.

      It's pretty bad right now. I only had 4 hrs of sleep and woke up to it - it's not a spike but I am hoping it will settle down so I can try to sleep again.
       
    18. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      @PeteJ, everything you are describing is normal. What you are experiencing and feeling is something we have all been through on this forum, and all I can tell you is that at the beginning it’s incredibly hard to deal with. Our emotions are all over the place and we find ourselves monitoring not only every little internal sound but every external sound as well. Mine fluctuated terribly at the start and still does to some extent, but nowhere near as bad as it used to. Once you become obsessed it can easily get out of control so it’s important that you take some deep breaths and try to relax. Believe me, I know how difficult this is, but I felt every bit the same as you do right now and all I can tell you from my vast experience with this condition is that our response to it usually gets significantly better with the passing of time.

      Put it this way, I went from being a suicidal mess to feeling indifferent about it. I wish I could somehow transfer the journey I’ve had into your thoughts so you could see and feel how this condition panned out for me over the years. Also, based on how I see others describing their tinnitus, I’d say mine is severe. I have a really shrill high pitched dentist drill that fills my brain, and along with this each ear has a different pure tone frequency: my left ear has a low pitched drone and my right has a mid to high tone. Underneath all of this, I have hissing noises that can sometimes morph into cicadas, and I also have electrical zapping sensations (although this is much rarer now).

      I know this is impossible to believe, but give yourself time and try not to think about it or ruminate over it. I never believed any of the posts that I saw which looked like this one does, but time proved me wrong and I believe it will for you as well. Take baby steps and don’t put pressure on yourself to feel better. Just try and let the noise wash over you and your brain will learn to treat it differently.

      There is still a chance that yours could fade as well, as it’s early days for you. In the meantime, try not to get swept away with the emotional storm it brings as this is like adding fuel to the fire. The calmer you can make yourself, the better.
       
    19. Daniel Lion
      Ape-like

      Daniel Lion Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      SE Asia
      Tinnitus Since:
      2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise trauma, hearing loss
      Go to the hospital, get some prednisone, some steroids. Lie, say your ears are killing you. The steroids for five days shouldn't hurt you. Buy or borrow a ladder and dismantle the fire alarm. No brainer. Either take out the battery or get some electrical tape and have a friend help you. No fire alarm, no pain... simple.
       
    20. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      I got some. I hope the NOW brand is okay. Picked it up in a local health store. How much should I take, when should I take it and how long?
      What am I taking it for and how often does it help and how many (people), do you think? Is it to hopefully repair nerve damage or it just another vitamin for stress/anxiety? I need something to restore/repair damage - I am desperate for that although I suspect there isn't a vitamin or pill for that yet that is released.
       
    21. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      I went into the bathroom and it's the quietest place in my apartment. I was in there and everything went completely quiet (or so I could tell) for a few seconds. At first, my T calmed down to just a tone - this is new - it was quiet at least and then the tone was gone. For only three seconds or so (approx). Is this normal? Many people with fluctuating T might have it go quiet like this but it is just a random pattern for a long period of time (indeterminate) or is it possibly a good sign?

      I have been told it's a good sign when it goes quiet so I need to cling on to that hope because I don't think I have anything else.

      P.S. it has gone back to the low volume tinkering kettle/fire alarm sound as I call it.... :-(
       
    22. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015

      Stop listening for it.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    23. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      Can someone recommend ear plugs? I'm out of my disposables. I need to order some asap. I can't remember the ones - a few people recommended some - brands.... I can't concentrate, sorry.

      I thought I should order a box of the foam ones - and some reusable ones - musician's plugs?

      Earpeace or Alpine? I can't remember which model but I think these brands were suggested here?

      As for the foam ones, I found the yellow 3M Classic ones are the only ones that don't bother me - although, I am wearing some of the disposable ones maybe too long. I guess I better go to the store and get some new ones for now.
       
    24. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      Are you going somewhere that’s loud?

      If you are talking about generally using them throughout the day then I strongly recommend you don’t, for many reasons. The last thing you want to do at this point is sit listening to your tinnitus whilst sensitising your ears. You will also put yourself at risk of compacting wax against your eardrums and unnecessarily irritating your ear canals.
       
    25. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      I don't know - it's random, right?

      Is traffic loud? Unfortunately, I live down town. My decibel meter reader on my phone (ap) shows 65 db when I'm walking the dog and around the same when I'm in the car. When cars move past me, it shows around 70 db.

      It's loud in stores - I was hit with bad spikes from two speaker intercom incidents - one in which it seemed to change my T patterns for the worse and one in which a frequency seemed to spike it. I also have traffic going by my window as it's on a busy street so I hear traffic including sirens. I want to move but I don't know what to do - if I had lots of money, I would just get out of here.

      I don't want to wear them too often and risk doing what you are saying but what about the potential of being exposed to a really loud noise/sound and/or high frequency?
       
    26. JuneStar
      Sheepish

      JuneStar Member

      Location:
      ny
      Tinnitus Since:
      8/18
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise induced
      Thats the brand I have. I would take two a day first thing in the morning on an empty stomach.
       
    27. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      The spike is happening. What am I gonna do?!?
      I went to a cafe last night. Big mistake, I think. Didn't wear plugs. No music was playing. It was all conversation noise. I brought plugs and my muffs. Really dumb.

      I need it to fade and improve. Please. I'm crying inside.
       
    28. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      I went to ER/Emerg. It's loud here. I think life is pointless now.

      How much noise or how many decibels is tolerable to drown out or mask tinnitus but avoid further hearing loss and/or hopefully minimize or prevent spikes?
      Do those hearing aids help with this? I agree with the members who say they are just salesmen. Also, I read that many experts say they often don't help tinnitus sufferers. So, if it's severe, what can one do? It's a hopeless case for me? I can't avoid noise even if I try.
       
    29. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      It calmed down and went almost silent briefly. At least, it's fluctuating already? Geez.... :-/
       
Loading...

Share This Page