Habituation Not Possible

Discussion in 'Support' started by Sahara, Dec 28, 2015.

tinnitus forum
    1. Sahara

      Sahara Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      July 2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Not known
      I am so desperate at the moment and would REALLY appreciate ANY advice.
      My Tinnitus gets worse and worse and worse.
      The T in my left ear has two sounds one loud shhhhhhh and at the same time a cricket sound which is reactive to any noise - how can I habituate when it's reactive?

      The right T (the ear which was fine at first) also started with a shhhh a while ago and became louder and today I could hear something which sounds like the cricket sound from the other ear - if the both ears have two sounds from now on I am not gonna be able to start from the beginning.
      I THOUGHT I am somehow habituating, I am being positive I don't give the T attention I protect my ears (no concerts and ear plugs at the cinema no loud music etc) I mask it at the right level with white noise I am eating healthy I am taking vitamin b and zinc magnesium (might discontinue as no result). I just don't know what to do and have no idea why it gets worse and worse.

      How can I possibly habituate if a) the t is reactive and b) it changes and gets louder (both)?

      If anyone has any advice for me it would really help me. I feel it gets worse due to a physical condition which I am going through one by one now. But I just can't live like this anymore for the rest of my life :( I really want this silence back but with two noises in both ears it will be so difficult to habituate.
       
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    2. Dave111
      Bashful

      Dave111 Member

      Location:
      Nederland
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2013 worse 2/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Emotional abuse + recording guitar. Songname: Never give up -_-
      Iam sorry to hear that maybe you better quit listening to many white noise.. I dont know try to help.
       
    3. Pilot
      Mellow

      Pilot Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Baltimore, MD
      Tinnitus Since:
      December, 2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      I am sorry you are going through this, changes in T can be tough.

      My T was reactive to noise in the beginning, it improved about 90% after 3 months and is about 95% better today. I would even get multiple additional sounds that weren't even present before being exposed to sound.

      I really believe that what helped was exposure to sound. My T would react when I drove in a car for a while so I would wear ear plugs for half the drive. Instead of wearing ear plugs at a restaurant I would expose my ears for a while then go out side for 10' and come back in.

      I am not a professional, but I would recommend exposing your hearing to any sounds that aren't damaging. At least sit through a movie for a little while with no protection, then wear ear plugs if you need to. I know it's hard to deal with increased T, but you have to push your brains auditory system.
       
    4. Lmsdocjeff

      Lmsdocjeff Member

      Sahara, it sounds like you're getting some good advice. We hope for habituation with T and our Reticular Activating System (RAS) frequently provides it. However, when our T changes in quality, volume, pitch etc, our RAS attempts to assess and filter again and is at times in overload. Making small deliberate changes can be very effective and help our RAS to respond more efficiently. Brief use of earplugs, earbuds with nature sounds, white noise, even meditation with the incorporation of a mantra is showing to be effective.
       
    5. Sahara

      Sahara Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      July 2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Not known
      Thank you everyone for taking the time to reply and for your advices.
      I spent the whole day outside not thinking about the T at all and not trying to panic, which is difficult, but what other option does one have. Anyways after coming home I had to put my finger in the right ear and that second noise disappeared. I hope it doesn't come back.
      Dave111, unfortunately I have problems falling asleep with the T being so loud at the moment.
      @Pilot, I am really happy for you that it improved so much! I started with the earplugs few months ago and I wear them only at the cinema or when there is really loud noise near me. But it doesn't make any difference. The T goes it's own way with or without earplugs. I have noticed since it started (2.5 years ago) it gets worse about every six months, either it becomes louder or it changes it's frequency or a new sound comes in. I don't even understand where it comes from in the first place, I had no exposure to loud noise in a damaging way, hardly went to concerts and never listened to loud music on headphones and my hearing (I had three different hearing tests) and they all came out normal.
      Lmsdocjeff, it's so annoying when a new sound comes in it's just soooooo deeply annoying, before i could sleep on my right ear and now that's not possible.
      Anyone has tried melatonin?
      Vitamin b complex, magnesium and zinc (3 weeks so far) showed no improvement for me at all. I will start with medication and see if that helps.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    6. Pilot
      Mellow

      Pilot Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Baltimore, MD
      Tinnitus Since:
      December, 2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      I'm sorry you are still struggling with reactive T after so long. Reactive T was the worst part.

      They do make pillows with masking devices installed in them which may allow you to sleep in your right side.

      I think you should also look at "Mindfulness". Dr. Bruce Hubbard is in the doctors corner on this website and his story is very inspiring since he suffered through bad T and H and was able to use mindfulness and CBT to overcome the negative emotions.
       
    7. Sahara

      Sahara Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      July 2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Not known
      So second sound in the right ear came back and stayed - and it will stay for good. that makes it now FOUR sounds - two in the left ear and two in the right.
      I could somehow handle the first sound in left year and also the first sound in the right ear but the second sound in the left ear took pretty much all quality of life away and now this. And the worst part is even this fourth sound will get worse and louder (like in the left ear). The way it's going I am afraid I am gonna end up with 10 sounds some day. Have been trying to be positive to be busy but nothing can stop my T for whatever reason.
      I simply don't know why this is happening to me - Having T is bad itself but having four different sounds of T is really unfair :(

      Does anyone know of any good timnitus clinics or doctors with a phone consultation where I can be advised what to test or any help?
      My t can not be noise induced so there might be small chance for at least some sort of improvement.
      I can't leave it like this now and just do nothing about it as its getting worse month for month.
       
    8. linearb
      Psychedelic

      linearb Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      East Coast USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      1998
      Why are you assuming that a new sound is permanent and inevitably going to get worse?
       
    9. Sahara

      Sahara Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      July 2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Not known
      @linearb the reason why I assume this is because of experience. Unfortunately so far all sounds before have become worse gradually every 6 months and all started like this new sound: the first few weeks I was unsure is this a sound or not and left it to "it's not a sound", when I could only hear it in very quiet places but once it was there for sure it never went away.
       
    10. Owen
      Disappointed

      Owen Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unclear. Inflammatory allergic reaction/AIED
      I have seen an audiologist about my hearing and in total I have heard 11 different sounds over the course of the last year or so - she told me that was a record for her, with the previous being 8. Personally, I would rather hold a record for a 100 metre sprint, or fastest lap around the nurburgring, but there it is :wacky:

      Anyway, as one sound seems to cease, or become less frequent and I think things are improving, a new one begins. Initially constantly and then that one too becomes less frequent. It almost feels as though my hearing is slowly recalibrating itself, it is very odd. The main 2 sounds I am left with now alternate between a loud ring and a morse code like sound in my right ear.

      I remain hopeful that these sounds will at least become quieter over time.
       
    11. Pilot
      Mellow

      Pilot Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Baltimore, MD
      Tinnitus Since:
      December, 2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Where do you live? There are tinnitus clinics located at some universities, they don't advertise very well. I attended stage 1 at the university of Maryland.
       
    12. Sahara

      Sahara Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      July 2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Not known
      Just a small update about me: last night something weird (and pleasant) happened: I was watching tv and had a spike in my left ear where I have two tones (one sshhhh and the other one a very disturbing cricket sound which changes its pitch and volume every few seconds) for about 2 minutes. After that spike I immediately noticed a difference: that annoying cricket sound (one of four sounds in total and the most disturbing one) had decreased. Usually this sound reacts to specific things, when someone talks very near to my ears the sound goes up, when I touch my ears it goes up, when it's quiet and I move it goes up. When I walk through our house and it's quiet it goes up with every step I take. But since last night it has kept its volume or even went a little down and did NOT go up with any of the above examples. For the first time after a long time I felt relief and a happy feeling. I really hope it stays this way. I feel like a different person when walking and no increase sound in my ears.

      I think what changed it is my mind. A few weeks ago when the fourth sound came in my right ear I had a deep depression, I didn't leave home for days I just felt miserable and wanted to do nothing. Then after a while I forced myself to be active, I started with:
      Yoga, meditation
      Relaxation methods
      Massages
      Healthy diet
      Cardio exercise and morning walks.
      I thought to myself what can I lose?For the first time in these 2.5 years I actually did things non medical related and purely for my mind and soul. Now it's been just a few weeks but I feel much better. I am not saying this is a solution but I am confident it helped me.
      What I think I might did wrong before is I over masked the t with headphones and music just above my t - I have stopped headphones completely and only mask with a sound machine or fan.
      I keep myself busy with things and focus on my life.

      @Owen I really hope at least some of your sounds disappear. T is annoying but so many sounds of t can drive someone crazy. Just one night without my reactive sound as it decreased to a normal sound and still with the remaining three sounds and I feel like another person!

      @Pilot I live in the Middle East and will be moving back to Germany next year so hopefully then I can go to some good clinics.
       
    13. Engineer
      Creative

      Engineer Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      1/20/15
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Most likely acoustic hearing loss
      Thanks for the vivid descriptions of your T-sounds. I saw your post, where you were worried about being able to habituate to changing sounds. I was very worried about this myself, prior to having experienced any habituation. I thought to myself, the quite negative thought, that I would be one of those people whose T could not be habituated. When the concept is new to you, its hard to think otherwise. What's helpful to realize is how many odd noises of different frequencies and sound levels that you are already habituated to. These change in loudness, pitch, and occur at different times all during the day, and you don't pay them a second thought. Some of them could be considered to be very annoying. The background noise while driving or in traffic, the furnace running in the background, city noises, dogs barking in the neighborhood, airplanes flying overhead, etc. The concept of habituation is new to you right now, but your brain has been habituating to sounds since you were born. As soon as the brain is comfortable that a sound is not indicative of danger, or something good or pleasant (not a chance with T), it begins to ignore or de-select it. The problem most of us have is that our brains greeted these new sounds with anxiety when we first became aware of them, putting them in the same category as the sound of screeching tires while walking down the side of the road. The brain is good at retaining these associations, and usually its beneficial to us, but not in the case of T. The difficult part is not worrying, and having the faith that our brain will put these sounds into the background where they belong. It helps to take stock of the wide variety of sounds that are already there in our portfolio of habituation, as proof that our brains are very good at this.

      Best wishes, Trebor
       
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