How Do I Listen to Music When Biking, Walking, etc. If Earbuds Are Taboo?

Discussion in 'Support' started by Earing, Jun 9, 2019.

    1. Earing

      Earing Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise
      I am wondering if there is a type of headphone or near ear speakers that are designed to let you listen to music safely while engaged in outdoor activities?
       
    2. GregCA
      Jaded

      GregCA Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Otosclerosis
      I don't think the "kind" of device matters so much as the volume that ends up reaching your ear. I use headphones regularly and at very reasonable volume, as recommended by my doctors.
       
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    3. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      @Earing

      Since your tinnitus was "noise induced" my advice to you is not to use any form of headphones or near ear speakers, to listen to music, as you risk making your tinnitus worse. There is no safe method. Peruse some of the many posts in this forum from people that have "Noise induced" tinnitus, use headphones at low volume and their tinnitus becomes permanently worse. Some people with NIT use headphones without any problems, however, there is always a risk. If the tinnitus spikes using headphones it will usually increase and will not reduce to its previous level. Knowing how distressing tinnitus can be, ask yourself the question, is it worth taking such a risk?

      Michael
       
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    4. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Earing

      Earing Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise
      I have read the warnings and will head them. I was hoping there was something I could use that would be more speaker like. Music has always been my companion when exercising. It seems so lackluster now with just me, no music and my hissing tinnitus.
       
    5. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      I understand how you feel because I was a frequent user of headphones until they gave me tinnitus 23 years ago. It was my fault for listening at too high a volume without realizing it. I haven't used headphones since and never will!

      I correspond and counsel people with "noise induced" tinnitus. Some have used headphones after they have habituated at low volume levels and regret it. Believe me there is no safe method of using any type of headphones or ear speaker, for people that have "noise induced" tinnitus. This type of tinnitus is different from tinnitus that was not caused by loud noise. Do not listen to any medical professional that tells you, using headphones is safe as long as the volume is kept low. They do not know as they are not tinnitus specialists. Most have never experienced tinnitus.

      Listen to people have "noise induced" tinnitus and have the experience living with the condition. We know the harm headphones can do. You have to decide what's important to you? People have telephoned me crying because of the distress headphones has caused them, after habituation and returned to using them.

      The choice is yours and I hope after reading my post you make the right decision.
      I wish you well.

      Michael
       
    6. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      I watch TV shows as I walk on a treadmill. The sound is coming from my computer's speakers, and it seems to be working very well. Recently, I walked 25.8 km (16 miles) in 4 hours and 45 minutes, and I pretty much hadn't noticed it - time flew and I had had a great time. Consider getting a treadmill.

      If you ever experiment with wearing headphones during your walks, I would wear them for 5 minutes, then (assuming nothing happens), I would wear them for 10 minutes, etc. I would probably not wear them for more than 15-30 minutes at a time, and if I were to notice any spikes that might be due to that, I would stop and never wear headphones again. Of course it is possible/likely? that it would still not be completely safe.
       
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    7. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      That is some walking Bill, Wow. I use an elliptical machine at home for exercising and have a portable " JVC boom box" that has two large subwoofers, mid-range and treble speakers. I can adjust the sound till it's just right and have no problems with spikes. Because I am an Audiophile, listening to high quality music reproduction is very important to me, even while exercising.

      Michael
       
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    8. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Earing

      Earing Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise
      To be clear, I will not use headphones. I will heed the warnings. I may try a small portable Bluetooth speaker that I can fasten to my handlebars or my belt. It the volume is low I should be OK with that?

      This brings up another issue. I am a musician, and when recording the standard method is to monitor the tracks and record as the musician plays along or sings to the "bed tracks". If I monitor bed tracks through speakers then what is already recorded will be played through speakers and picked up by the vocal mic or the guitar mic. (Depending what instrument is being recorded). The standard way to get around this track bleed is to monitor using headphones. I have 2 pairs that are over $500 each just for this. Now I might as well sell them as I cannot record with them ever again... The guitar I can probably work around by isolating the amp and mic in a separate room, and monitor through the speakers with the song. By being isolated the mic won't pick up the playback, only the amp. Recording vocals without headphones will be impossible not to get bleed though... Oh well. Not worth further damage.
       
    9. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      This method should cause no problems and I believe will be safe for you.

      Regarding recording music in your studio I am not versed in this area. However, I am an Audiophile and listen to high quality music through speakers. All I will say, just be mindful of sound levels in the confines of a studio monitoring through speakers.

      Michael
       
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    10. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Earing

      Earing Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise
      I bought one of these sound pressure meters (too late) after my tinnitus shit the bed.
      I keep my playing between 50-60 dB. If I have 20 dB musician's earplugs in (retain the highs, lowering the volume while preserving the eq or tone) I may play my electric guitar between 60-70 dB. If I sing with no microphone, it is impossible not to go to to 80 and spike 88-92 dB.
      I was surprised how loud un-mic'd vocals are.

      41L3FInGneL.jpg

      I am not sure about the accuracy of my led meter. I am going to the local audiologist's office and see if they will let me compare my unit to one of their expensive calibrated decibel meters. Hopefully they will give similar readings.

      Calibrating meters is important, but it also adds a lot of $$$ money to these meters.
       
    11. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      I am sorry to burst your bubble once gain and honestly don't mean to. Please do not pay too much attention to sound level meters. Whilst useful in one sense they are notoriously misleading for anyone that has noise induced tinnitus. The reason being: sound levels of 50db and below can cause spikes depending on how severe a person's tinnitus is and hyperacusis if it is present.

      In addition to this, please do not put any faith in earplugs. Again, they can be very helpful but please be aware of the following. If external sound is loud enough it will pass through your head/skull and be transferred to your inner ear by "Bone conduction" and this can spike your tinnitus and could make it increase permanently to a new level.

      Sorry to sound so sobering but just be careful.
      I wish you well.

      Michael
       
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    12. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Earing

      Earing Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise
      OK thanks. I won't play with a full band or drummer anymore. But I still want to play and record. At low volumes (50-60 dB) it is pretty low. I don't think it's any worse than a radio at talking volumes? I also have been practicing scales etc. with no amp on my electric guitar. This is extremely low volume as the guitar is a solid body electric.
       
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    13. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Earing

      Earing Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise
      How do pro musicians with tinnitus deal with it? Sting etc...

      https://www.thereliefproducts.com/2018/02/07/25-celebrities-suffer-tinnitus/

      Famous Musicians With Hearing Loss & Tinnitus
      Bob Dylan - Suffers from tinnitus after a highly successful and extensive career in the music industry. He is one of the most high-profile names on the planet to be affected by rining in the eras.

      Ozzy Osbourne - The Black Sabbath frontman suffers from permanent tinnitus after spending decades surrounded by the noise of heavy metal.

      Barbra Streisand - Despite a fruitful career as one of the world's most recognizable voices, Barbra Streisand's tinnitus is not the result of being a musician. In fact, her tinnitus became evident when she was a child at the age of nine.

      Eric Clapton - Suffering from both hearing loss and tinnitus, the former Cream guitarist's conditions are believed to be noise-induced.

      Phil Collins - The former Genesis singer actually developed sudden deafness as a result of an infection in the year 2000. During the early 2010s, this had developed into some more chronic and caused a temporary retirement.

      Bono - The face of U2 suffers from tinnitus and even sings about hard of hearing in the song Staring at the Sun. The real irony is that his stage name originated from a hearing aid store in Dublin.

      Sting - With some real hearing aid experience, Sting's hearing loss stems from a lack of wearing a device.

      Neil Young - It is widely believed that the more somber Harvest Moon was released due to the onset of tinnitus.

      Pete Townshend - The famous songwriter and The Who guitarist suffers from hearing loss and tinnitus, and it believed that he is almost deaf.

      Roger Daltrey - The second member of The Who to appear on this list has been heavily impacted of late by noise-induced hearing loss.

      Brian Johnson - The lead singer of rock icons AC/DC took a little break from the band to give his ears a rest, but states his hearing loss comes from car racing, not loud music.

      George Harrison - One-quarter of the Beatles, and the most private member is rumoured to have hearing issues.

      Paul Stanley - You may not recognize him without his makeup on, but the KISS frontman has had hearing problems since birth.

      Chris Martin - The Coldplay star has been suffered from tinnitus for well over a decade now.

      Liam Gallagher - The former Oasis singer has claimed he suffers from tinnitus.

      Ted Nugent - His hearing loss may have come from shooting rather than his music but he now wears earplugs at concerts.

      Mick Fleetwood - The Fleetwood Mac drummer first noticed his hearing loss way back in 1989.

      Anthony Kiedis - The Red Hot Chili Pepper's vocalist details his hearing loss and tinnitus in his biography Scar Tissue, claiming the onset occurred after touring with Nirvana.

      Lars Ulrich - The Metallica drummer developed hearing loss and tinnitus early on in the band's rise to worldwide fame.

      Brian Wilson - The second and final Brian on this list. The Beach Boys co-founder has been partially deaf in his right ear for most of his life.
       
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    14. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      @Earing

      There is a very simple answer to all the musicians mentioned above that have tinnitus and continue to play in bands, wear headphones etc. Please read my post below.


      What is severe debilitating tinnitus?


      People that are new to tinnitus have often told me, they didn’t realize it was such a common condition. When discussing it with a friend or family member the reply is: “I just ignore it” “Mine only bothers me at night once asleep I’m fine”. Another might say: “It plays a tune, it was strange at first but I’m used to it now”. And so the story goes on. These comments can make a person think, what is wrong with me, why can’t I just ignore it and get along with my life?

      The truth of the matter is this: Tinnitus is a very common condition and comes in many forms and intensities and no two people experience it the same. Fortunately, most people are able to live with it or rather “habituate" and carry on doing all the things that they want to, without it impacting too much on their life. I have covered habituation and the habituation process, in many of my posts and articles that can be found on my started threads.

      Although most people eventually habituate to tinnitus naturally or with the help of medication, counselling and sound therapy. There is darker and more sinister side to tinnitus, that is not often talked about but I believe is relevant and should be addressed, especially if one wants to carry on with their life. Under these circumstances, it is absolutely vital that a person seeks the best help that is available to them.

      What is severe debilitating tinnitus and what are the best ways of treating it?


      I have read posts where people say: “My tinnitus is severe and I’m still able to work”. “My friend has ragging tinnitus, plays in a band and isn’t affected by it”. Some famous musicians say “I hear tinnitus over everything I’m still able to play loud music”.

      The answer by those mentioned above to people that have difficulty coping, managing and working with tinnitus because they find it debilitating, it’s all about mind over matter. If you don’t allow tinnitus to get the better of you then you can accomplish anything that you want to do.

      In reply to those people I want to say that you are talking absolute rubbish. You are able to continue playing loud music in your band or able work and carrying on doing all the things that you want to do because, your tinnitus has not reached a critical level of intensity yet. I hope it doesn’t because if it ever does, then you will come to know and realize the full wrath of what tinnitus able to unleash someone. Your tinnitus may indeed be intrusive and noticeable over many things. However, I am here to tell you it is not severely debilitating.

      When tinnitus reaches a severe level of intensity and this is sustained, it becomes seriously debilitating and affects a person’s mental and emotional wellbeing profoundly. The affected person, will often be under immense pressure trying to cope with not one but often a cacophony of noises in their head and ears. Under these circumstances. It can be very difficult to do some of the most simple every day tasks. Medication in form of antidepressant, benzodiazepine such as clonazepam have often proven to be helpful. So is counselling with a Hearing Therapist or Audiologist, trained in the treatment and management of tinnitus. Contrary to what some people believe, medications do not necessarily make tinnitus worse.

      It is reading posts and listening to people that don’t know better who say, antidepressants and benzos make tinnitus worse. These people often have low to moderate tinnitus and are able to manage it quite well, even if its occasionally severe they are not overly troubled by it. Therefore, they have no need to find help taking medication, having counselling or using sound therapy for treatment.

      Not seeking professional medical help can result in a person spiralling down into deep depression and having suicidal thoughts due to the immense distress they are put under by intrusive tinnitus. It can sometimes result in a person having to be admitted into hospital psychiatric unit.

      Please seek medical help if you are having difficulty coping with tinnitus.

      Michael
       
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    15. Luman
      Artistic

      Luman Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Brooklyn
      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Intermittent Tinnitus probably noise induced
      Brian Wilson, songwriter, musician, singer and leader of the Beach Boys, lost most of his hearing on his right side as a child. The Beach Boys early albums were recorded only in monaural, due to Wilson's inability to hear in stereo. Despite having this handicap, he did OK for himself. :cool:
       
      Last edited: Jun 9, 2019
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    16. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Is it easier on the knees than a regular treadmill? My biggest constraint are my knees. I keep having to reduce my speed or reduce the rate of ascent when my knees begin to complain.

      Also, can you simulate walking uphill on an elliptical?
       
    17. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Earing

      Earing Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise
      If you put something under the front end to raise it up.
       
    18. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      @Bill Bauer

      Once you use an Elliptical machine also called Crosstrainer, you will not want to go back to using a Treadmill. It is far superior to a treadmill on many fronts. First, there is no impact underfoot as the feet do not touch the ground so it is unlikely to cause problems with tinnitus as some people have with running on a treadmill and on hard ground.

      An elliptical machine will give a full body and cardiovascular workout as lower and upper body are used. You will find it much easier on the knees as again there is no impact with the ground and the peddles move smoothly in an elliptical shape.

      I use a LifeFitness elliptical machine. This company makes gym equipment for commercial and home use. I wanted a good model so bought the E5 and I'm thoroughly pleased with it. It is heavy at just over 100lbs and almost takes up the entire length of my box room. It has around 20 workout programmes and uses Eddy current braking system, so needs to be plugged into the electrical wall socket.

      My machine has programmes to simulate walking up a hill aided by the eddy current braking system.

      Try an elliptical machine I'm sure you will not be disappointed. There are many videos on Youtube giving information about elliptical machines. I advise you to go to good store that specialises in gym equipment to find one that suits your needs.

      Michael

      https://lifefitness.co.uk/home/products/elliptical-cross-trainers/e5-elliptical-cross-trainer
       
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    19. Strife_84
      Energetic

      Strife_84 Member

      Location:
      Finland
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Mixing music for long hours and too loud I guess.
      Listen the nature. Its not that bad at all.
       
    20. Ken219
      Frustrated

      Ken219 Member

      Location:
      New York Area
      Tinnitus Since:
      Summer of 1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise exposure?
      @Michael Leigh You appear to be enlightened about tinnitus. You have had tinnitus for many years as have I. Do you ever encounter spikes or relapses? If yes are you aware why? Thank you, as I have had several spikes and currently in one now and it always appears to be from extreme stress, example family death or illness. I would like to know your thoughts. Thank you.

      P.S. Anyone with experience please chime in!
       
      Last edited: Jun 9, 2019
    21. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      HI @Ken219

      I only saw your post by chance as I didn't receive an "Alert". Please make sure my name is highlighted if you wish to page me again @Michael Leigh

      The last spike I had was in 2008 when my tinnitus increased due to a second noise trauma. It resulted in having TRT treatment for 2 years followed by another 2 years to habituate. Those four years were the most difficult I had experienced with tinnitus. I will paste a link below to my post: My experience with tinnitus, which explains what I went through.

      Although my tinnitus fluctuates from: complete silence, mild, moderate and severe, it does not spike and fortunately I haven't had another relapse. I experience no hyperacusis which has been cured for over 20 years.
      As you probably know spikes happen for a reason. Stress can cause them and exposure to certain sounds, typically if you have hyperacusis and it hasn't been treated or is not cured? If you are sensitive to sound this could be an indication that you have hyperacusis and as long as it is present you will be susceptible to spikes. Below please find links to posts that I have written on spikes and other information that you might find helpful.

      If you have any more questions please ask
      All the best
      Michael

      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/are-spikes-from-loud-noise-permanent.18156/

      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/tinnitus-a-personal-view.18668/

      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/hyperacusis-as-i-see-it.19174/

      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/my-experience-with-tinnitus.12076/
       
    22. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      @Bill Bauer

      Apologies for making an error in my previous post: The weight of my elliptical machine is 251 lbs and not 100 lbs

      Michael
       
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    23. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Earing

      Earing Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise
      I have the same model.
       
    24. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      good isn't it?
       
    25. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Earing

      Earing Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise
      Yes and no. For me I find the feet need to be closer to the arms. It makes me lean forward and this gives me a sore neck and upper back. I have called Life Fitness and they had nothing for me. I cut wood pieces to fill in the ridge around the feet. This allows me to move my feet forward so my toes hang over the edge. But it is still not good enough. Next I will cut a new piece of wood to make a "floor" that extends an inch or two over the original foot. I could just cut the retainer and have the 1 piece of wood, but that would damage the unit...

      Do you have any suggestions for me?
       
    26. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      @Earing

      I am puzzled by this as I haven't had this problem. I am 6ft 2 and find the "feet" in a perfect position for me. I particularly like that the stride length can be adjusted. Apparently, the E5 is the only model that has this feature. Even the more expensive ellipticals in the range only have fixed stride length of around 20-to-22inches. That's not good enough for me, I use the maximum stride that the E5 allows which is 24inches just right.

      I wish I had a solution for you but can't think of one sorry. To give the machine more stability, I placed a length of wood under the front and back feet: 8inch x 1inch overhanging the feet width by 6inches either side.

      Apart from using the many programmes onboard I also do high intensity workouts (HIT) that I downloaded from YouTube. Very good indeed if you want a link please let me know.

      Hope you will be able to find a solution to the "feet".

      All the best
      Michael
       
      Last edited: Jun 9, 2019
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    27. JohnAdams
      Starving

      JohnAdams Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      here
      Tinnitus Since:
      it started.
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      hearing loss
      Maybe try bone conduction headphones?
       
    28. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Earing

      Earing Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise
      I am 5' 10" so that must be the difference. I was thinking I could also take off the legs and weld another tab so I could move the footrest forward. The problem with using wood and overhanging like I did is there is a rubber shock under the front of the footrest, and when I build the wood platform to overhang the footrest the rubber shock gets depressed more than it normally would.
       
    29. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      @Earing

      I don't quite follow you.

      If you go to Youtube and type in (or copy and paste) the following in the search bar:
      Life Fitness Elipticas 2015 - E-Series (E1, E3 y E5 You will see a woman using all three elliptical machines in the E series, including the E5. I don't think she is as tall as you are.
       
    30. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Bone conduction headphones will likely cause problems as the sound/vibration will go straight to the inner ear along the Mastoid bone irritating the cochlea. There are posts in this forum where people have tried Bone conduction headphones and it has made their tinnitus worse. People with "noise induced" tinnitus risk making it worse using any type of headphones.

      Michael
       
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