From Catastrophic Tinnitus to Almost Silence in One Year

Discussion in 'Success Stories' started by Kavadog, Jan 25, 2021.

    1. Kavadog

      Kavadog Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Trauma
      January of last year (2020) I had a head injury (concussion) that resulted in catastrophic levels of tinnitus and hyperacusis.

      My tinnitus was so loud that it prevented me from sleeping, working and functioning at all for the first 3 months. It wasn't maskable even in the shower. Also, any attempts to mask with white noise, etc. actually increased the tinnitus volume.

      I was suicidal during this entire time and the only thing that kept me going was reading encouraging reports on Tinnitus Talk and the fact that I saw slight improvements when taking Prednisone. Maintaining a hopeful outlook was absolutely critical.

      Once I realized that Prednisone helped, I came to the conclusion that inflammation was a key factor.

      I decided to go on a 100% anti-inflammatory diet and focus on dietary supplements like Curcumin, Omega-3, Magnesium, NAC and eliminate alcohol and caffeine. I desperately wanted to try taking Benzos to help me with sleep and anxiety, but based on the information on Tinnitus Talk, I decided to try to push thru this without them to avoid the risks that they present.

      Throughout the year, I definitely had plenty of ups and downs day to day with the volume and sensitivity.

      However, I did notice that month over month I was seeing an improvement trend.

      The first few months I couldn't be exposed to any sounds without it physically hurting my head and the headaches were almost constant. As the months went by, the headaches became less frequent. I was able to be exposed to normal conversation and the tone went from a very loud high pitched tone, to a softer high pitched tone, to a loud high pitched hiss, to a softer hiss, then to a softer low pitched hiss.

      Today it's barely noticeable. Over the year I tried to use an objective way to measure my improvement by comparing my volume/noise to that of a reference sound played at different volumes. I was then able to determine that the reference sound volume was reducing month to month so I knew my progress was actual healing, not just me adapting.

      This has definitely been the hardest thing I have ever experienced in my life. I thank all the members of this forum for the support they have given to everyone here.
       
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    2. Mags

      Mags Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Mid October 2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Stress
      Thank you for your positive story and well done!

      When did you start noticing improvements?

      I'm 3.5 months in and whilst my tinnitus was mild/moderate for the first 3 months, 10 days ago I developed an awful reactive tone that I can barely mask :( I thought I was improving and now got this. I don't have hearing loss. I got tinnitus after prolonged period of stress.

      Looking for encouragement that it's not all lost yet, as I'm devastated it got worse instead of better like my doctor kept telling me it would :(
       
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    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Kavadog

      Kavadog Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Trauma
      Hi Mags,

      I first started noticing improvements after about 6 weeks when I took my first round of Prednisone. After that, the improvements were more about month to month changes vs day to day or week to week. I definitely had lots of bad weeks where things got worse for a while before they swung back towards improving. A 10 day spike definitely does not mean it's not going to settle back down soon. Tinnitus definitely requires me to practice patience. It's kind of like the old two steps forward one step back saying. Also, stress seemed to make it worse. I noticed that doing Tai Chi every day definitely seemed to calm my system down.
       
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    4. Mags

      Mags Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Mid October 2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Stress
      Interesting you mentioned Prednisone. I have just come back from an ENT who prescribed me exactly this medicine. Fingers crossed it helps to bring the volume down a bit.
       
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    5. Gman45

      Gman45 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Oklahoma USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/13/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Concussion or ETD
      Interesting. Thanks for posting. Gives me hope. I had a concussion six weeks ago and the tinnitus started a week later. It's been hell to cope with. I started taking Prednisone too. It seems to help, but as you say tinnitus is odd. Sometimes you think it's going down, and then it's right back front and center.

      Mine started as a high pitched tone, but sometimes now it turns into more of a high pitch hiss. Both ears seem stuck at the same levels and move together in intensity.

      We all don't have much of a choice but to deal with it, but success stories are nice to read.
       
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    6. cruise

      cruise Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      March 2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      I think a reduction of stress does two things.

      One: It lowers the volume / intensity of tinnitus.

      Two: It helps you get less affected by the tinnitus, to the point that you forget that you have it. In other words, if both these things are happening, you may forget about the tinnitus before it reaches a certain low level.
       
    7. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Kavadog

      Kavadog Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Trauma
      Your story sounds exactly like mine. I had head trauma, tinnitus started about 1 week after the injury. The tone then hiss and both ears the same is identical to me. You seem to be healing faster than I did, it took me 6 months to go from tone to hiss. So I'm hoping you get down to a quiet soft hiss much sooner than I did. Also, I'm very optimistic that mine will become totally quiet again soon. Seems that trauma to the inner ear heals very very slowly, but it does heal. :)
       
    8. Gman45

      Gman45 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Oklahoma USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/13/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Concussion or ETD
      Kavadog - Has your tinnitus ever gone silent, or is it just really low now a year later? Really low doesn't sound so bad of course.
       
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    9. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Kavadog

      Kavadog Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Trauma
      Gman45, the soft hiss is low enough now that I can't hear it unless I'm in a completely silent space. If I were to use a scale of 0 to 100 for my tinnitus, I would give it a 100 at the onset, a 50 after 6 months and a 4 now. Since I'm still seeing improvement month to month, I'm hoping for total silence in the coming months.
       
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    10. Gman45

      Gman45 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Oklahoma USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/13/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Concussion or ETD
      I hope you hear silence again soon. Sounds like it really dropped off after six months. Concussion tinnitus is so odd. My ENT thinks mine may be ETD. I have had allergies for years. Still, never had tinnitus until the concussion so who knows. If ETD, hope it can resolve too.

      As for the concussion, I hit my head. The next day slight hyperacusis and feeling foggy with headaches. Then, one week later as all the headaches were fading I woke up with screaming tinnitus. Mine Is constant but has definitely faded some from the onset seven weeks ago but still always present. Fading very slowly. On a scale of 1 -10, mine started overnight around an 8. I heard it just about everywhere and it made it hard to understand others speaking through the noise. It's probably around a 4 most of time now. It's been the hardest thing I have ever gone through mentally. I keep going back thinking how could I hit my head like that. Happens so fast as you know.

      Thanks again for your story. Helps me stay positive for the future.
       
    11. SadMan
      Tired

      SadMan Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma
      Thank you very much for sharing your story. It really gives me hope.

      How's your hyperacusis now? After how many months did it start to improve?
       
    12. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Kavadog

      Kavadog Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Trauma
      SadMan,

      The hyperacusis is completely healed now. The first 3 months, I had to wear earplugs for everything except very soft talking. Months 3 to 6 I only had to wear earplugs if I was in a noisy place like a restaurant. Months 6 to 9 I was still sensitive to loud sounds, but I was able to go without ear plugs completely (I didn't go to bars or concerts obviously). Months 9 to 12 I didn't really notice it anymore (expect maybe a glass or dish breaking).
       
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    13. Cottagecountry

      Cottagecountry Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Kavadog,

      can you share what supplements you took, doses, how many time’s a day, mg’s of each and brands, etc...?

      thanks
       
    14. Gman45

      Gman45 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Oklahoma USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/13/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Concussion or ETD
      I have started Curcumin and Turmeric supplements.

      Did you take others like NAC, Omega 3, etc. in addition to Curcumin? I guess it's OK to take all at once?
       
    15. L34

      L34 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      June 2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown, but little dip at 7000 Hz
      I took it all, and no bad effects for me. No good effects either, though.
       
    16. BILZER

      BILZER Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Doxycycline
      I would be very interested in anyone's else's experience with supplements if they helped...
       
    17. Michael1122

      Michael1122 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      March 2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      My 1 year anniversary with tinnitus is coming up in the beginning of March. I fortunately have seen SIGNIFICANT improvement over the year. My tinnitus is only in my right ear and has a popping sound that would start off soft, then get loud, then run up the scale and down the scale. The noise was constant, all day, all night, everyday. I couldn't lay or use an ear plug in my right ear without it getting louder.

      I made all the usual appointments - GP, ENT, had an MRI - everything was normal. Finally I went back to my GP and asked if I could try Xanax and Lexapro. He was more than willing to prescribe because of the pandemic. Ugh, the pandemic. Anyway, the Xanax really helped me at night with sleeping. It allowed me to tune out the tinnitus and made me drowsy enough where I could fall asleep and stay asleep! The Lexapro has helped leaps and bounds. I really think it has taken away the stress of having tinnitus and been a significant factor in making the tinnitus almost disappear entirely. I started taking the Lexapro in August and since November, my tinnitus is practically gone. I get an occasional pop in the morning but that's it. I can even sleep on my right ear again. I know there's a stigma with anti-depressants, but they really helped me.
       
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    18. L34

      L34 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      June 2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown, but little dip at 7000 Hz
      @Michael1122, do you still take the AD?

      If yes, what are the longterm plans for tapering off? Or can you continue to take it longterm?
       
    19. Keith Handy
      Worried

      Keith Handy Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Stress + sleep deprivation + noise
      @Kavadog - you say you started noticing improvement six weeks after starting Prednisone. When did you start on that?
       
    20. Mick82

      Mick82 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      03/01/2021
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music/ movie
      Bump on this. It’s almost two weeks for me and I’m torn if I should attempt a course or not. My second opinion ENT yesterday was ready to prescribe a low dose one (lower than the one I have on hand I guess) but I was all hesitant for fear of making things worse.
       
    21. Tezcatlipoca

      Tezcatlipoca Member

      Location:
      Mexico
      Tinnitus Since:
      June 2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      NIHL
      Sorry to tell you this but after two weeks I don't think it'll work; Still you should try it if you want to, cover your bases.
       
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