How Earplugs Works for Me

Discussion in 'Support' started by Shedee, Aug 31, 2016.

tinnitus forum
    1. Shedee

      Shedee Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Hearing loss after freediving accident
      Hi everyone,

      I would like to share my experience with influencing my acute T (1 month from onset). My T rises with exposure to louder souds, especially of the similar frequncy of T. Loudnes doesn't have to be very high. Even falling water when showering makes it worse. So I started wearing earplug (foam type, 36 dB) in my left ear (T is only there) during whole day and it made a good job to reduce T.

      Another benefit is that T is different with earplug and also when you take it out of the ear, then as you start to hear better from outside, T is subjectively reduced.
      Maybe someone could give it a try as it costs nearly nothing and should be safe (sure you must consider what you do during the day). For me it is important to wear it whole day to avoid being hit by any louder sounds. Even one loud sound may waste whole day effort.

      I know it's not very comfy for long term, but just try it for few days...
       
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    2. HiThere

      HiThere Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/01/1975
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Delivery by forceps? Childhood ear infections?
      Glad to hear that works for you. Sorry to hear that shower sounds make your T worse. I think showers are great since they completely mask my T while I'm taking them. It's a welcome respite.

      I experience the same thing in that loud environments aggravate the level of my T in a very real way. I avoid loud environments for that reason and even carry earplugs in a metal tube on my key chain. In times I've been caught without earplugs I have stuffed dampened pieces of tissue in my ears which is effective enough/better than nothing. When I am exposed to unexpected very loud environments or noises, the level of my T escalates for days afterward. The louder the environment, the louder my T level rises.

      In relation to my T, I also experience something rather bizarre since I also have hyperacusis. I think my hyperacusis is both a sensitivity to loud sounds as well as an anticipatory sensitivity (loud sounds and even moderately loud sounds hurt like shocks to my whole nervous system). By "anticipatory sensitivity, I mean that I wonder if the hyperacusis is there as a preventative, knowing that I will also pay for loud sounds with increased T volume for days.

      If I could wear comfortable ear plugs all day, even if they muffle conversations, etc, I probably would. I feel SO much more relaxed wearing earplugs. I walk frequently outside for exercise and wear earplugs to reduce engine and street noises to a non-threatening level. Also, hearing my breathing when wearing earplugs is very calming to me. The bizarre factor is that drowning out outside noises with earplugs greatly increases my awareness of my T. I don't care though!

      The audiologist that confirmed my T and hyperacusis said that it's best if I desensitize to loud sounds. Expose myself purposely to moderately loud to even loud (but brief) sounds. Sorry, no. To me that's a recipe for exacerbated T levels. I'd rather baby my ears and continue to have hyperacusis than exacerbate my T.

      Chris
       
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    3. gotyoubynuts

      gotyoubynuts Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Concert
      I might try this but I'm afraid it could cause over sensitivity to sounds? Do you think it's a risk?
       
    4. HiThere

      HiThere Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/01/1975
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Delivery by forceps? Childhood ear infections?
      @gotyoubynuts:

      Do you have T as well as H? Does your T "flare up" after exposure to loud environments?

      T is 24/7/365 for me. H is controllable both by avoidance or ear plugs when warranted. Personally I would much rather be overly sensitive to sounds than suffer amplified T for days after loud exposure to things.
       
    5. Shedee

      Shedee Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Hearing loss after freediving accident
      @HiThere

      It seems like we have same "type" of T. So you experience this variation of volume of your T according to surrounding loudnes for 41 years already? I though T settles at some more or less constant volume when it's chronical.

      And what frequencies of T and H do you experience?

      If you want to try all-day earplug wearing I can recommend you one type I've recently discovered. They're made of special type of foam which reacts to temp of your body. They form a shape according to your ear canal and then rapidly reduces pressure to ear canal resulting in comfy wearing. I use to wear them about 14 hours a day almost nonstop now. Is it allowed to recommend a specific product/brand directly here at forum?

      @gotyoubynuts
      @HiThere

      It's true that all-time wearing of earplugs may cause oversensitivity to loud sounds because your volume regulation mechanism in middle ear stops to work properly as my doctor says. She recommended me to pull out earplugs often when I'm not in loud enviroment (so this regulation system does some excercise).
       
    6. HiThere

      HiThere Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/01/1975
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Delivery by forceps? Childhood ear infections?
      @Shedee:

      My T frequency is almost always the same. It only gets lower or higher temporarily when I have a spike but goes right back to its "normal" frequency. It's harmonic rather than a single tone so I can't isolate it perfectly. It seems to be around 7500 Hz.

      The volume most definitely increases after loud environments for days afterward and is most noticeable at night.

      It's not practical for me to wear earplugs all the time. In some respects I would love to. I would be a much calmer and much happier person.

      I'm fine with you recommending an earplug that helps you. Are they discreet?
       
    7. Shedee

      Shedee Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Hearing loss after freediving accident
      @HiThere

      And do you really feel it this way all the years long or is there some long term progres either positive or negative?

      The earplugs are Mack's ThermaFit. It should be easy to get them over internet. They're made in skin colour and as they are not conic you can push them deeper into ear canal. This makes them hard to spot.
       
    8. HiThere

      HiThere Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/01/1975
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Delivery by forceps? Childhood ear infections?
      Thanks for the earplug recommendation. I will buy some of these and try them.

      My T has had no change in 40+ years or at least it's been the same frequency/type as long as I can remember. The only difference is the volume level influenced by my environment. I am also more conscious of my T during stressful times.

      Otherwise, thankfully I have gotten used to it through the years. Although I've had T all my life, that may be an advantage over someone like yourself in that I have nothing to compare it to; I literally can only imagine what true silence is because I've never experienced it. I know silence is possible for those that do not have T, but part of me doesn't believe that true silence is possible since I've never experienced it.
       
    9. Shedee

      Shedee Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Hearing loss after freediving accident
      @HiThere

      You are welcomed. Let me know your experience with them.

      It's interesting to hear from someone who has had T since born. It could be idea also for us, people who get the T later...just to think (persuade ourselves) that absolute silence simply doesn't exist. I think everyone hears something when he/she covers his/her ears so we might try to accept T as our standard level of background noise (if possible with respect to T loudness).
       
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