Formerly OK with Tinnitus, Experiencing a Setback

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by JoeC100, Jan 1, 2019.

    1. JoeC100

      JoeC100 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      Quick intro, I first developed tinnitus in 2007, when I was 27 February 3rd, 2007 was the first time I ever noticed it. I recall because I was in a hotel room that was super quiet, and woke up with an unexplained ringing. I served in the military and was exposed to plenty of bangs and booms. Also was a concert goer and loved loud music in my youth. To top it off I worked in auto body shops. The day prior to noticing my tinnitus, I was using a pneumatic drill that I pin pointed as the trigger of my tinnitus.

      I went through the whole cycle of emergency room, ENT, follow up hearing tests and a trip to the VA. But it was relentless. My tinnitus was definitely here to stay. I was constantly holding my fingers over my ears, gauging the volume, pitch and severity. Constantly exposing myself to closed rooms, my car without the engine running, and outside at night time to expose how bad my ears were ringing.

      My tinnitus is strange, as it started in 1 ear (left) and then transformed into both. My ENT said this is normal, as the brain will create a noise that is more even to maintain equilibrium. I’d say it was pretty loud. Could notice it pretty much anywhere, barring loud environments...

      I worried myself sick, dropped weight, obsessed, hoped, bargained... pretty much desperate. But I had to keep living. I was planning a proposal to my girlfriend, working on a career, trying to live a normal life. And those motivators kept me going, despite constant worrying.

      Now I didn’t chronicle my tinnitus (which I wish I had, though it may have lead to obsessing). But fast forward to 2009-2010 and I was completely fine with it. Like, it was always on my mind to be careful with loud noises. I constantly wore ear plugs at work, and just kinda got used to the ringing. It was a form of acceptance. I went through a crappy divorce and my T never changed. Just always the same ringing, a little louder in my left ear.

      From 2010-present, I lived completely normally. I remarried, entered a new profession (law enforcement), had 4 kids, bought a house, and did 7 years of school while working nights in order to obtain my masters degree. All with tinnitus.

      This brings me to 2 weeks ago. I was doing some training with colleagues, and we decided to carpool to the training site. Some of the training was above average noise, some was loud, and I wore hearing protection when I felt it was needed (I’ve become pretty aware of what is “too loud”). As we were driving in the morning, I noticed my left ear ringing.

      I thought to myself “I never hear my tinnitus in the car”. And began obsessing over it again. Since that day, I’ve crashed and burned. It is like a total reset. I can now hear my tinnitus over just about everything, it is almost to the point that it causes dizziness. But I have too much responsibility to dive into depression. So this time it is more like annoyance. It is switching back and forth from left to right. Varying it’s pitch. Changing as I turn my head or lay down. Just crazy.

      I had honestly not given thought to my ringing in so long, now it’s driving me crazy. I’m going through the same damn cycle all over again. Sick to my stomach, went to urgent care (said I have inflammation in my sinuses and gave me Sudafed and Flonase, which did nothing), obsessing, holding my fingers over my ears, sitting in quiet rooms. Just trying to figure out where it went wrong.

      My hope is that nothing has gotten worse, but that I am experiencing some type of stress related relapse. I swear to anyone, as someone that has had tinnitus for 12 years, I beat this psychologically. And it took time and patience. I am hoping that the battle will be easier this time, as I have to relearn how to just set aside the ringing and keep living. Fingers crossed.

      Before I go, I want to say that although there is no cure for tinnitus, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. You do get used to it, it isn’t a death sentence, and you can live and accomplish lots. I am keeping a journal this time around. Going to try to see if I can chronicle this setback, as I am sure that with a lifelong condition it is bound to happen again.

      I’d love to hear from anyone that has experienced something similar.
       
      • Hug Hug x 4
    2. cj5suzy

      cj5suzy Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      I have the same thing. Its been 14 going on 15 months ..high pitched ringing i woke up with that never left. Also have multiple tones going on. I get a short one second spike with certain head movements . I also have hypercussis. I keep telling myself its going to get better but im not sure that will ever happen. Im certain its from being in a noisy environment. I wear macks hear plugs every day and try to stay away from anywhere loud
       
    3. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      It might be a temporary spike. Temporary spikes can take over three months to clear. So if I were you, I would assume that it is permanent only if a couple of months from now it is still there, as loud as it is now.
       
    4. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      JoeC100

      JoeC100 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      Bill,

      That is great advise and exactly how I’m approaching this. I’ve encountered several “temporary spikes”, usually due to lack of sleep or a night of drinking. These have gone away within the day they’ve started. Obviously this spike is going on 2 1/2 weeks. Going to get ready to face this all over again. Thanks.
       
    5. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      My longest spike was due to a loud phone that blasted noise directly into my "bad" ear. It was gone after about 3 months, and it began to improve after about 6 weeks...
       
    6. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      JoeC100

      JoeC100 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise

      That’s good news, I’m hoping for a similar result (although I can’t pinpoint what caused this spike). I feel like the varying pitch in my left air has always been there, but just seems louder now. Contemplating getting my hearing checked, it has been 6 years since I have. Although I can still hear pretty well.

      Thanks Bill
       
      • Like Like x 1
    7. dougwarby

      dougwarby Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/18
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      unknown
      Bill is it common for T that started in one ear to start to be heard in both? I can sort of understand that. Mine is only in the right ear and generally quite tolerable. However when I become anxious it gets louder and seems to be more even
       
    8. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Yes, it is. I know this, because that is what has happened to me. In my case, I know that only one ear had an acoustic trauma. But 9 months after onset, T spread to both ears. So I was paying attention when others talked about it spreading to the other ear, and it turns out that this is in fact common.

      Back when I had it in only one ear, I was always reminded of what I had lost (as my good ear would be completely silent). So there is a silver lining to having it in both ears.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    9. dougwarby

      dougwarby Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/18
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      unknown
      I wonder if the fact I still have it in just one ear, 6 weeks now, means I might still mainly have an ear rather than brain issue? You probably can't answer that !
       
    10. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      6 weeks is very early. I remember reading something about when the doctors think it becomes a brain issue, but I don't remember what that time was.
       
    11. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      I read about at least 2 people (which makes it 3, if we include me) who got it in the other ear at around the 9 months mark.
       
    12. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      JoeC100

      JoeC100 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      My left ear was the first to be affected, my right ear began ringing shortly thereafter. My ENT told me that when you develop T in one ear, you brain will compensate the lack of sound in the other ear by generating a similar ringing. Mine are quite different, but the way he explained it made sense. Had something to do with equilibrium.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    13. dougwarby

      dougwarby Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/18
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      unknown
      Why can't the brain decide if one ear is quiet and one is ringing, to stop the ringing in that ear to make them equal !
       
      • Agree Agree x 2
      • Like Like x 1
    14. SillyMama

      SillyMama Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      joeC100, I read a few of your posts...
      Did I read that your new tinnitus is like high-pitched crickets, changes in pitch and intensity, and varies with your position?
      I'm having this type of tinnitus, and I'm looking for others. My crickets also make my vision jerk, though.
      I think mine is somehow related to my spine and head position, and I'm exploring positional therapies.
       
    15. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      JoeC100

      JoeC100 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      SM,

      Yes crickets is a relatable noise (the varying pitch mimics the chirping of crickets). I have noticed mine to be positional or changing with head movement. The only thing I’ve chalked that up to is changes in blood flow. Not sure that I have any neck issues and have not experienced any recent trauma. I’m off to my doctor today, want to get checked out and see if there’s any reason to be concern, i.e. major issues. Going to request a follow up with an ENT to get the hearing checked out. Like I had said originally, I have conquered this emotionally over a decade ago, so it may be round 2 for me with my recent change. I’ll keep my post updated.
       
    16. Rajin

      Rajin Member Benefactor

      Location:
      PA
      Tinnitus Since:
      9/7/17
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Hearing loss ,noise
      @JoeC100 Hi do you think this new spike that you recently experience, is it more louder than your onset that you habituated to?
       
    17. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      JoeC100

      JoeC100 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      Hi Ra,

      I’ve been trying to convince myself that I “renoticed” my original T, which I had become nearly immune to. But I’m recognizing that it has transformed into something a bit different. I did do some training for work that was a little loud at times, but I thought I managed to protect my head well enough. My left early is a higher pitch, and right ear is a little louder. I took a trip to the ent, who checked my hearing. I do have a certain frequency in my right ear that I am unable to hear under 30 db, but other than that dip nothing indicated any hearing loss. I had a few bouts of dizziness, which I chalked up to nerves. Regardless my ent put me in for an mri. I’m laying in bed now, watching television. I know that my current ambient noise environment was more effective masking what I had become habituated to, so I’d say it’s safe to say it’s getting a little worse after 12 years... I have beat this mf before, and I’ll do it again. Just a new noise to get used to. Got my sound machine set to rain ☔️ I think my biggest challenge with this change is going to be getting to sleep. That was a big hump the first time. I’ll be sticking around the forum.

      “Habituation takes time” - JoeC100 (lol)
       
      • Like Like x 1
    18. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      JoeC100

      JoeC100 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      Hey all,

      Posted my intro recently, I am a few weeks into my second battle with tinnitus. After some noise exposure (mostly with hearing protection), I noticed my tinnitus became louder, and different.

      I have been really focusing on it which is obviously the worst thing to do. Tough at first. My tinnitus started in 2007, and it took me nearly 2 years before I felt normal. That is to say that I had conquered it emotionally, having experience no reduction in volume or change in persistence.

      I’m in this for a second time, learning to cope all over again. I know that as we all get older, and our hearing starts to fade, we will go through our own battles with tinnitus. Just reaching out, venting, saying hi.

      Joe
       
      • Hug Hug x 2
    19. annV
      Fine

      annV Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2005
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      unknown - possibly hereditary
      Many can habituate a second or third time. :)
       
      • Like Like x 1
    20. hans799
      Mellow

      hans799 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Hungary
      Tinnitus Since:
      Born with it
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Worsened Dec 2016 by headphones
      I did, too. Tinnitus was constant for 28 years (had it since birth) then 2 years ago wham! got new sounds. Was a bitch but I'm mostly OK now. Still have bad days but can function pretty well.
       
      • Optimistic Optimistic x 2
    21. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      JoeC100

      JoeC100 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      Around a month In to my spike. Got an MRI tomorrow, I elected to do no contrast dye. A little nervous about the noise, but I spoke with a technician who was comforting and offered for me to use both ear plugs and ear muffs. I’ve been dealing with occupational noise for 20 years and ear muffs alone typically suffice. But I’m going to double up as not to further agrivate this condition. Any words of comfort? Thanks.

      Joe
       
    22. hans799
      Mellow

      hans799 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Hungary
      Tinnitus Since:
      Born with it
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Worsened Dec 2016 by headphones
      If you can, ask them for the make and model of the machine they're going to use and google its noise level. If it's low enough, you can rest easy.

      Also I've been in an MRI twice with wax earplugs and had no T issues whatsoever.

      Finally if you feel the machine is just too loud, feel empowered to just slam the panic button and get out. You are not honorbound to endure overly high noise levels, the button is there for a reason.

      In a quiet enough machine, with proper protection, and with a panic button you're primed to use, you should be just fine.
       
      • Like Like x 2
    23. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      JoeC100

      JoeC100 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      MRI complete. Boy it was loud, but I know I’m at an emotional disadvantage and have a bit of a sound sensitivity. The technician was very comforting, and said that I feel uncomfortable at any time just stop the imaging.

      I used the earplugs they provided, which were nice 3m foam and was expecting to also have a set of ear muffs. They said the earmuffs wouldn’t fit, but they packed the sides of my head with foam which helped a lot. There was only 1 portion that I found very loud, and I spoke up. They said that that was the loudest portion and that the next imaging was gong to be a different type of noise.

      All together, I wouldn’t want to do it again. But once it stopped, and I was still wearing the hearing protection, I didn’t notice any changes to my current level of T. Maybe seemed a little louder because I was coming out of a noisy environment. Fingers crossed that I don’t get some random spike later on today/tonight.

      Thanks for the replies, to those that did. I’ll update soon with the imaging results.

      Joe
       
      • Informative Informative x 1
    24. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      JoeC100

      JoeC100 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      So I got the news back from my MRI. Imaging does not show any growths, or any masses. It does show that I have a sinus infection, which is what May have been the cause of my spike? Again, a month ago I noticed my ears ringing louder than normal and felt some accompanying dizziness. Doc is prescribing me amoxicillin to knock out the infection.

      Anyone been through anything similar? I’d love some responses, maybe even if it’s about another post you’ve read.

      Thanks, Joe.
       
    25. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      It was probably the cause. Your T ought to improve several weeks or months after the infection clears.
       
    26. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      JoeC100

      JoeC100 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      Thanks Bill,

      As we know with T, time will tell and changes don’t occur overnight. Anyone used Amoxicillin with their T? Ive never had an ototoxic drug reaction in the past, and have always taken Advil and antibiotics when prescribed. Doubt anything will change this time around, except maybe the pressure will subside.
       
    27. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      I took Amoxicillin when my tooth began to hurt. It is supposed to be the the least ototoxic antibiotic, and it hasn't had any impact on my T.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
      • Helpful Helpful x 1
    28. SillyMama

      SillyMama Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
       
    29. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      JoeC100

      JoeC100 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      SM,

      I’ve been driven pretty dang crazy by this “spike”. My dizziness has subsided mostly, and now I’m working in the T. My current T is bouncing back and forth from left to right. Right ear is the only ear with cricket type sound. I do get some variation with neck position/head movement but for the life of me cant find anything consistent. Nothing that relates to vision for me. I think that my at took a turn for the worse, probably because I stacked 12 years with intermittent noise exposure (nothing that I can attribute a single event). Just in a weird acceptance phase now, still bummed out. I can now hear my T over significant ambient noise. But I am so damn busy with work and kids that I literally don’t have much time to sulk. Going to have to wait for habituation to kick in. Guessing it’ll be anywhere from 6 months to 2 years. Took me nearly 3 the first time, and I had accomplished a lot. I barely ever thought of it, never bothered me going to sleep, or in silent environments (despite being very present). I’ll keep updating, and I’m hoping for some positive change.

      joe
       
    30. James Brown
      Sporty

      James Brown Member

      Location:
      Portugal
      Tinnitus Since:
      09-1998 2013(worst)2018 (T+H)
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise exposition-noise trauma-siren
      It´s always hard when your T change or become more intrusive.With aging ,diary exposure to noise and a lot of others stuff we get spikes.Could be permanent or not.It´s always a big challenge to cope every time this happens.I know because i remember my spikes.it will take some time ,but as you know for previous experiences you will come to the point you will forget it. Believe me ,your T it´s not so bad.Mine is reactive , i have strong H and my noise changes every day or every time i sleep ,even if just for 10 minutes.Right now i have a hiss i can handle well ,tomorrow i can have a drill inside my brain with a high pitch.I never know.I will accept the T i have today for the rest of my life without hesitation.We have to take what comes and do the best we can.
       
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