From 0 to Debilitating Tinnitus in 2 Months

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by Matchbox, Oct 27, 2020.

    1. Matchbox

      Matchbox Member

      Location:
      BC Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      August 2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise Induced (Earbuds , Prednisone?, Aspirin)
      Hello Everyone,

      I'm new here, and could use some advise with dealing with public healthcare and doctors who won't take risks (and follow the ENTs' guideline of "do nothing" as they are the "experts")

      I initially developed tinnitus after a noise exposure 2 months ago. Went from a hiss to a whine and dine within a week. Was given steroids which seemed to make the problem worse (50mg for 2 days). After persuading a GP to give me a true trial of steroids and doing HBO, my hearing and tinnitus had greatly stabilized (was left with a hiss in my left and a low rumble wavering seashell tone in my right (which occured with the steroids), only audible in 25 dB rooms and no longer reactive as they had been previously).

      Fast forward to now, I took a plane (was rather coerced under duress by a support network I've since ditched) to see another ENT and the hearing protection I had (doubled) was not enough. It was a floatplane and registered 95 dB in the cabin.
      I had a tremendous spike and intermittent "chimes which were amplified when they occurred with real sound, even chewing" which randomly appeared along with new tones.

      Then I decided to do HBO to help the situation a day later. Apparently that was a big mistake, because I could hear the new tones fading, but they were replaced with what's best known as non-sense. RANDOM blips, bleeps, laser blasts, chimes all throughout my skull. Texting and banging on the chamber to leave apparently didn't make it fast enough for them to do anything about it quickly.
      Many of those subsided, but I've been left with severe sound distortion (water sounds like chimes, fans sound like they are beeping).

      As time has passed (about 5 days) things are progressively getting worse. 3 days ago I began to get a unilateral "bell toll" tone which was completely random and rhythmic. It had me rushing for Xanax and Clonazepam as they have been the only ways I've been coping since this onset. I've developed low unilateral tones which react to sound (very fun around fridges) in a big way, it sounds like they react up to 60 dB to me and sound like a wine glass being made to play low resonating music (just very intermittent and momentary).
      They also are reactive and will match the volume of other sounds (even though they are NOT the same tone).

      White noise and fans sound... at best demonic. Full of beeps, moans, screeches.
      My GP is not on board with prescribing another round of steroids, nor looking into safer viable alternatives that might be safer because they aren't "used for tinnitus" (Pentoxifylline).

      I'm definitely desperate to turn down the tones, HBO had previously worked, but now I'm scared shitless of it. I feel steroids would be beneficial (even if they leave new tones behind as they're always so far been quiet and slowly fade).

      Is there any way I can get him to play ball? Shopping for a new GP right now would prove really difficult in my location, public healthcare and all... and I feel like I've been on the clock since whatever happened in that plane. Sounds keep appearing and any kind of low volume masking seems to make things worse (onset of new sounds, aggravated tinnitus).

      When this whole mess started, I found the combination of benzodiazepines and steroids worked extremely well for making this quiet and although not always "quiet" when I tapered, it was waaaaaaay better than baseline. My doctor isn't onboard this time with doing it again so soon and prefers to defer to the ENT and what they would think, which is do nothing (and getting in touch with specialists in Canada is a nightmare).

      Since this new onset I've been off work yet again, because this time it is too much. The tones are too loud, too busy, too random to concentrate or habituate. They can't be masked, sounds are wrecked. Was just getting my life back together and now getting hit this hard again feels like my world is demolished. I'm hating myself for putting my trust in people whom really didn't understand or have my best interests at heart.

      I'm afraid to even "try" to mask at night since it could be worsening it (I've only used spurts of masking using large 40 dB volume fans which sound distorted but "trap the demons" out of my head) and benzos I had JUST finished tapering before all this began again and I'm afraid could also be making things worse (dependence and upregulated GABA receptors).

      Any advice from experts would be appreciated. I know habituation is key, but I've been thrown into the deep end of a pool, and when I was barely... BARELY... swimming someone turned on the waves to maximum.

      Regards,
      Michael from BC
       
    2. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      @Matchbox

      You are new to Noise induced tinnitus and the best thing to do is leave it alone and give yourself time to recover. There are a few suggestions I recommend to help you cope better in these early stages and they are mentioned in my post:
      New to tinnitus what to do and Tinnitus, A Personal View. I advise taking your time and read all my posts thoroughly in the links below.

      I advise not to use any type of headphones, earbuds or headset and if possible stop monitoring sound levels with your decibel meter. This often makes matters worse by instilling panic, fear and negative thinking. Try not to overuse hearing protection, which is covered in my post: Hyperacusis, As I see it. Use low level sound enrichment during the day and particularly at night. More about this is mentioned in my posts.

      Michael

      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/new-to-tinnitus-what-to-do.12558/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/hyperacusis-as-i-see-it.19174/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/tinnitus-a-personal-view.18668/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/acquiring-a-positive-mindset.23969/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/tinnitus-and-the-negative-mindset.23705/
       
    3. DebInAustralia
      No Mood

      DebInAustralia Member Benefactor Advocate

      Location:
      Geelong, Victoria
      Tinnitus Since:
      30/12/13
      I'd be taking Nicotinamide Riboside if I were you.
       
    4. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      I am not really an expert, but I have been reading the posts on this forum almost every day for over 3 years, and I have a good memory.

      There have been very few posts describing what you are describing. So it is possible that your situation is completely different from that of a typical sufferer. It sounds like you are (understandably!) assuming that unless you do something, whatever you are hearing now is what you will be stuck with for the rest of your life. For most people that's not the case. You have already experienced your tinnitus fading. What you have now is a tinnitus spike. Most tinnitus spikes are temporary spikes. A temporary spike can last over three months, but normally begins fading during the first 4-6 weeks. If your tinnitus doesn't improve over the next five weeks, it would make sense to start worrying that what you have might be permanent. For now I think it is reasonable to assume that in less than three months you will feel much better.
       
      • Like Like x 3
    5. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Matchbox

      Matchbox Member

      Location:
      BC Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      August 2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise Induced (Earbuds , Prednisone?, Aspirin)
      Thank you all for your support and comments.
      I'm taking the time to read.

      I don't know if this is a spike per say... as the situation was worsened by HBO directly after the plane flight.

      That and I'm finally coming off of benzo medications.

      HBO really changed everything to make things super reactive, and distorted.
      I'm really hoping to convince my doc to try steroids as this as it is, is insane.
      The tinnitus making things sound "not like they should" is disturbing enough and being HIGHLY reactive causing aural fullness too.

      The hissing in my left ear is almost a joke compared to the rest of the low/mid tones in my left. At least I can mask that.

      Is there a dB level that someone with my ears would be considered "safe" for masking?

      That's been a huge concern of mine that I'm actually doing damage. After masking last night my ears were ringing very high pitched (like I had been to a concert) and it was pink noise/piano music measured at the source at 40 dB. I don't allow myself exposure above 50 dB... but I can't tell what's causing further damage at this point.
       
    6. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Most spikes have a trigger. My worst spike happened after I pressed an old land line phone (its volume stuck at Max) to my bad ear and the person calling me raised her voice to greet me.
      You should experiment with the various dB levels. Start at low dB for 5 minutes and see whether your tinnitus gets worse. If it doesn't get worse, increase the time. Keep doing that, and then try a louder dB for 5 minutes. Whatever exposure doesn't result in a spike is safe. Exposures that produce a spike are probably not promoting your healing.
       

Share This Page

Loading...