How Can You Habituate to LOUD Tinnitus?

Discussion in 'Support' started by Jrblovsky, Nov 19, 2020 at 5:27 AM.

    1. Jrblovsky

      Jrblovsky Member

      Location:
      USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      Christmas 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Gunfire (Maybe) & Menieres
      Does anyone have any suggestions for habituating to loud tinnitus?

      I don't care to hear from anyone with mild tinnitus that can only be heard with ears plugged in or masked by fans. I'm talking about truly debilitating loud tinnitus that never stops.

      I've been off work for six months today and have given up that any ENT, audiologist, or medication can help. I'm truly miserable, but have an advanced degree and refuse to sit around the house any longer waiting for change. I can sleep at night with sleeping pills, alcohol, or THC but functioning during the day is hard.

      I'm going to look for a desk job but I need to figure out how to not hear this noise or let it drive me insane while I try to focus/concentrate.

      To members whom have habituated, do you just take Xanax every morning and force yourself to work? I've exhausted all my options and been told there is nothing more that can be done. I have low and high frequency hearing loss. Above 10 kHz is gone completely and severe distortion in low frequencies from Meniere's disease. The tinnitus is constant roaring at 450 Hz at 70 decibels according to the evaluation I had today. Other tone is 10 kHz at 55 decibels.

      I was hoping for Sac Decompression Surgery or a cochlear implant but was told I qualify for neither today.

      Any input is appreciated. :(
       
    2. dan
      Chatty

      dan Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Toronto, Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise
      There are no people habituated to 70 dB tinnitus.
       
    3. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

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

      I have tinnitus for 24 years habituated to it twice and it was most severe between 2008-2012. It is now variable in intensity: completely silent, mild, moderate, severe, and very severe. I have had TRT twice the full treatment and not a scaled down version of it. Each treatment lasted 2 years and with counselling and wearing white noise generators for 2 years. I also counsel people with noise induced tinnitus at various forums, by telephone and email. Please click on the link at the bottom of this post and read article: My experience with tinnitus.

      I have mentioned the above to make you aware that I know what I'm talking about when advising people on Noise induced tinnitus and hyperacusis. These are my areas of interest and like others in this forum know about them in-depth. Therefore, I hope you find my advice helpful.

      I understand how you feel towards your ENT doctor and Audiologist but there are the best people to help you. You may need to change practice and see an ENT doctor more importantly an Audi0logist, that specialises in tinnitus and hyperacusis management and treatment. ENT doctors treat underlying medical problems within the auditory system that causes tinnitus. Most do not specialise or treat Noise induced tinnitus which is what you have. You should be under the care of Audiology and see either a Hearing Therapist or Audiologist that specialises in Noise induced tinnitus.

      Treatment may require: counselling, sound therapy, medication, relaxation therapy or a combination these. I advise that you don't use any form of headphones including noise cancelling, earbuds or headset even at low volumes. During the day and especially at night, use low level sound enrichment. More about this is explained in the links below. Please do not try and mask the tinnitus. Keep sound enrichment slightly below the tinnitus.

      Please click on the links below and take your time and read my articles thoroughly. I know this might be difficult since your tinnitus is intrusive but please do not skim through them or read them on a phone. Read them on computer screen and if you have a printer, I advise you print and refer to them often as they are a form of counselling. This will help to reinforce positive thinking.


      Hope you start to feel better soon.
      Take care

      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/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/the-habituation-process.20767/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/what-is-trt-and-when-should-it-be-started.19024/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/what-happens-in-trt-sessions.18195/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/can-tinnitus-counselling-help.22366/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/medications-and-tinnitus.12365/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/tinnitus-and-mental-health.21978/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/my-experience-with-tinnitus.12076/
       
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    4. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Jrblovsky

      Jrblovsky Member

      Location:
      USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      Christmas 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Gunfire (Maybe) & Menieres
      I was hoping. But I kinda figured that. Some days it does go down in volume being I can hear the 10 kHz tones and not the roar, but it changes all the time for no reason.
       
    5. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Jrblovsky

      Jrblovsky Member

      Location:
      USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      Christmas 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Gunfire (Maybe) & Menieres
      Hi Michael,

      Thanks for the response. I had hyperacusis when this started but it went away about two months in. I agree with the noise induced hearing loss, but the cochlear hydrops is definitely causing my low frequency tinnitus. I have been told by multiple doctors that cochlear hydrops can or cannot be noise induced. Sounds like they just don't know. I have tried noise generators and hearing aids. I may try again being I have nothing left to try. It's honestly pathetic that this problem is so debilitating and nothing is being done to cure it.

      Do you have tinnitus in both ears or just one?

      I've always wondered if for TRT I need two generators or one being I have no impairment or tinnitus in my left ear.
       
    6. Vincent R
      Caffeine

      Vincent R Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      09/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma
      My take:

      I don't believe there is any method to habituate to really loud tinnitus. Either you get used to it over time or you don't, and this may depend largely on your personality. What's left, if you haven't gotten used to it, is to cope - which is no different from learning to live with other great losses. In other words, the next step after "No, I'm not getting used to this" is "How do I pursue meaning through an existence which is actually quite painful?"

      That said, there are two alternative things which may or may not be an alternative in your case:

      1. Stem cell therapy. Very expensive and no guarenteed results. There are plenty info on this forum you can read up on. Focus on the posts written by the user @attheedgeofscience.

      2. Meditation training that counteracts the negative medical aspects caused by tinnitus related stress. This path won't take your tinnitus or suffering away, but might make it possible for you to function without using drugs. I am a meditation wonk myself and have written a thread on how people who suffer from tinnitus can go about it:

      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/meditation-practice-to-deal-with-tinnitus-suffering.8165/

      (In short, use meditation methods that involves a focus on the whole body and apply a fanatical commitment. While it's possible to obtain positive effects from meditation despite having severe tinnitus, this gain comes at the expense of great effort.)
       
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    7. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

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

      My areas of interest are tinnitus and hyperacusis caused by exposure to loud noise. I say this because I have many years experience in them although my severe hyperacusis was cured in 2 years using white noise generators as part of TRT. I am not a doctor this is the reason I only advise on Noise induced tinnitus and hyperacusis. As previously mentioned, most ENT doctors do not specialises in Noise induced tinnitus or hyperacusis as this is not their area of expertise - to treat these condition one has to be referred to Audiology and be under the care of an Audiologist or Hearing Therapist that specialises in noise induced tinnitus and hyperacusis.


      Some people are under the impression ENT doctors don't know much about the ear and tinnitus but this is not true. ENT doctors are physicians that specialise in Ear, Nose, Throat. They treat underlying medical problems associated the ear - when things go wrong tinnitus can sometimes develop. However, they don't actually treat the tinnitus especially noise induced.

      You have mentioned cochlear hydrops. My understanding is that this condition is associated with Menier's. Therefore, it's probably the Menier's that is making your tinnitus worse. On reflection you may need the advice/help of your ENT doctor as this their are of expertise.

      Please read my post in the link above: My experience with tinnitus. I have tinnitus in both ears but no hearing loss or other conditions.

      Michael
       
    8. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Many people report feeling better/habituating after about 2.5-3 years.
       
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    9. Kel65

      Kel65 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      March 2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      The only thing that has helped me is time and drugs to help pass the time. My tinnitus is very loud and very high pitched. Nothing masks it. The first 3 months were horrible. I was suicidal, frustrated, all that. However, after the first 3 months my suicidal thoughts suddenly eased up. I think my brain just said well you can’t beat it, so you better get used to it. It wasn’t quieter, and I don’t like it, but I just woke up one day and could experience it without wanting to put my head thru the wall. After that I started to experience a day here and there where the volume lessened and I could function without noticing it. Then there were more days. At this point, I have gone up to 2 weeks where I can function normally during the day and can sleep 6 to 7 hours at night.

      However, eventually it spikes again for some unknown reason. Since I can’t mask it, I have to be constantly active on those types of days. Because, as soon as I sit down or try to do something quiet I get frustrated and impatient with it. I know if it’s really bad I can always relax myself with some drugs (Benzos, sleep meds, or CBD) and on the worst days that’s what I do. It’s helped me to get thru the worst. It’s not ideal, but at least I’m not suicidal, and it gets me one day further in the journey.
       
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    10. Ben Winders
      Pensive

      Ben Winders Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic
      While we are all feeling your pain I don't agree with "It's honestly pathetic that this problem is so debilitating and nothing is being done to cure it."

      There is so much in the pipeline it would be a pity (for lack of a better word) if you would give up at this time.
      I know it's hard, but hold on just a little bit longer until any of the meds or devices that are currently in the last stages become available.

      Just imagine you give up now and within a year FX-322 would have been available and it would have cured (or seriously reduced the intensity of) your tinnitus. That would be such a pity.

      I know it sounds shitty - but hold on, try to accept, try to convince your brain that this sound has always been there and it doesn't harm you. I know it's easier said than done - I'm still trying to figure this out myself.
       
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    11. MindOverMatter

      MindOverMatter Member

      Location:
      Norway
      Tinnitus Since:
      2004
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown (possibly stress induced, and later sound induced)
      It's your take, and I respect that, but I do not agree however. But I agree there is a certain degree of personality as well involved in this. But every case is so different, so it's impossible to really tell how others feel and react - no matter how loud your tinnitus is.

      And really, getting used to it and habituate relates a lot to each other.
      I know several with severe tinnitus that still live a normal and happy life - and that got used to it and thus habituated over time. But as said, we are different, and tinnitus (+hyperacusis) comes in so many different shapes and varieties.

      I do 100% agree with @Ben Winders. There is always hope.
       
    12. Lilah
      Supportive

      Lilah Member Benefactor

      Location:
      USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      I found a sound that is about the same frequency as my tinnitus so I use that when I'm at the computer or reading at home. At work, playing this sound is not an option as I'm not wearing headphones, but sometimes I do play it if no one is around. I plan to get maskers next year after I change my insurance which should help pay for a portion of the cost. I think if you find a sound that is the same frequency as your tinnitus, your tinnitus should blend with the frequency sound where you won't notice the tinnitus as much. Sometimes I'm in denial and don't use sound enrichment, but I'm better off using it and always regret not using it earlier.
       
    13. Lilah
      Supportive

      Lilah Member Benefactor

      Location:
      USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      I know someone with moderate/severe tinnitus who described her sound as a flute sound. She plays Asian drum type sound enrichment so it goes along with her flute sound. If you don't like frequency noise, you can trying another type of sound that blends with your tinnitus.
       
    14. lightning
      Amused

      lightning Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Severe tinnitus since Dec 30 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise exposure
      I'd try meditation that focuses on the sound. Since it can't be masked, it seems like the best course of action is to tackle it head on and desensitize yourself to it as much as possible. I know that's may not be ideal, but maybe it can keep you together long enough for real treatments to come to market. This is how I approached my unmaskable tinnitus. Now I can sleep in a quiet environment, no white noise at all. I can also work without it bothering me. I honestly can't tell anymore if it has gotten quieter or if I'm just more used to it. I think it's probably the beginning stages of habituation.
       
    15. BobDigi
      Kick ass

      BobDigi Member

      Location:
      UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      5.6.14
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise
      I'm just going to get straight to the point because I am typing on my tablet. My tinnitus is super loud, never been masked, never will be. High pitched screech in my head.

      1. Accept it's not going anywhere. Neither are you so you have to live with it.
      2. Keep busy. Do any activity that helps, don't avoid doing anything you need to.
      3. Stop Googling and looking for a cure. There is no cure and there probably never will be. Certainly not in our lifetime.
      4. Stop whining about it. It won't help.
      5. Lie to anyone that asks about your tinnitus. Tell them it's better. Lie to yourself and tell yourself it isn't bothering you anymore, or at least as much.
       
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    16. Chinmoku

      Chinmoku Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Started with a cold, possibly worsened by medication/noise
      I'm trying to do that but it's so intrusive that sitting 30 minutes paying attention to the noise is extremely hard. I'm super restless. Fully watching the breath is impossible, the attention is on the noise that cannot be ignored, 30% breath awareness vs 70% tinnitus awareness. I try to move all awareness to the tinnitus but trying to sit with that is torture. I have been doing it 30 minutes every day for two months but my progressive worsening is making it harder and harder. I think mindfulness, unless you are the Dalai Lama, cannot work with catastrophic tinnitus. But that's just another thought.
       

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