How Many Are Using Back to Silence with Success?

Discussion in 'Support' started by noisebox, Jan 9, 2016.

tinnitus forum
    1. noisebox
      Loved

      noisebox Member

      Location:
      Yorkshire, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      West End show. Came back 2015 vitamin D overdose prescribed
      I'm really curious how many people are using the amazing Back to Silence technique who have had partial or total success?

      I'm one of life difficult cases so to hear success stories would help me a lot.
       
    2. daniel1111
      Shitfaced

      daniel1111 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Amsterdam
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/12/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced, repeated exposure with loud headphones.
      I have some success with it, but I'm not following it to the letter. I don't think being completely honest and saying "I hear my T and I'm sad, depressed, want to die, etc" is healthy. That could just make depression related to T worse, which makes T even worse.

      The useful part of it for me is that it redirects your thoughts when trying to measure and analyse your T sound and I think that's the main reason it works. I supposed there are multiple ways of acheiving that goal though.
       
    3. Natalie Roberts
      Depressed

      Natalie Roberts Member Benefactor

      Location:
      USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Pregnancy or mild hearing loss.. Who knows.
      Seems like a form of mindfulness. Acknowledging something, being kind to yourself and moving on. I don't use this method but I do practice mindful meditation and I find that help full
       
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    4. Andersson
      Worried

      Andersson Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2012
      Tried it for a few weeks but no success so far.
      Tried it after my T increased, but I guess since I got a depression and high anxiety it's hard to make it work.
      I am still trying to not messure the volume, just my response to it (just that I hear it 24/7 now again over everything so I would litteraly have to respond every second I am awake, which just is impossible)
       
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    5. Atlantis

      Atlantis Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2014
      I tried it for a week, no help.
       
    6. Phil-O

      Phil-O Member

      Location:
      Lancashire UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2015
      I have been doing BTS for several months, some success, but need to be more consistent / determined. Anxiety and depression do make it harder. Regards Phil
       
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    7. Aya

      Aya Member

      Location:
      The Hague, Netherlands
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Betablocker
      Been using BTS since October. T isn't gone and does flare up from time to time (especially after things that trigger it), but looking back I must say that lately I hardly respond to it, even if I hear it. Now, I don't know if that's proper use of BTS, but what I don't need, I don't use ;-)

      The problem I have with saying: "I hear the T, I feel..." is that most of the time I have no feelings toward it. It is there, I hear it and accept that it's there and that it will drop back down to base level, either in little time or a couple days.

      I've tried the words and tried to muster up feelings towards it, but the only thing it does to me anymore is make me very slightly nervous on occasion. I have been using only one sentence: "I hear the T, I am relaxed" (I do a couple of breathing exercises when I whisper that like 5 times and relax all my muscles). After that I go about my business, whether I still hear it or not.

      Maybe it means that the BTS is slowly kicking in, or I have built up a tolerance for it, because as long as I can remember I have suffered from headaches (originating from my neck and shoulder muscles) and when I had those, I learned to accept that I had them and all I could do is wait until my muscles relaxed again and the headache would subside, which usually took a whole day until like 3 in the morning. I had no feelings towards that either, I just waited it out.

      My brain apparently looks at (a spike in) my T the same way as it does at headaches, because I hardly respond to it anymore and just wait it out. I try to get my mind occupied with other things and try to ignore it.
       
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    8. noisebox
      Loved

      noisebox Member

      Location:
      Yorkshire, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      West End show. Came back 2015 vitamin D overdose prescribed
      I think I need to hear about some more people using this process with success.
       
    9. Bobby B
      Fine

      Bobby B Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      long term NIHL and recent acoustic trauma
      I tried it and it works - each time I was able to totally not hear my T for a few minutes, 5 or 10 min right after talking to myself how I feel about it.
      But I need to be more consistent throughout the day...I sort of did run out of things to say about T without being repetitive.

      Not sure if I am doing it right..if you feel the same about T then you repeat the same stuff over and over ?

      On my days off I'm mostly just too lazy to do anything about my T and end up listening to it out of habit and passivity, just like you would watch people passing by when sitting in a cafe...not thinking much about anything ...which after a while does make T fade away eventually..I call it the Lazy T method.

      As long as the brain does not flag it as danger sound - it will sort of fade away.

      Workdays are better when I concentrate on issues and work stuff. Lunch breaks & commute are hell because my T reacts to noise as the ear cells/nerves are damaged so even with earmuffs the music and noise amplifies my T. Maybe that's when I need to do more BTS..
       
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    10. Phil-O

      Phil-O Member

      Location:
      Lancashire UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2015
      Hi @Bobby B @I who love music
      That's my problem exactly. When the method starts to do its magic I get lazy and let the T volume thoughts back in. Need to be more resolute. Regards Phil
       
    11. Telis

      Telis Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Calgary
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2013
      If this method works for you, I would imagine that you probably have some phycological issues and not tinnitus. If you can make your T go away by thinking certain things then honestly I don't know what to say but maybe go see a shrink and skip the ENT.
       
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    12. Bobby B
      Fine

      Bobby B Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      long term NIHL and recent acoustic trauma
      @I who love music has had T longer than most of us here so he knows what he is talking about.
      I have firearms - rifles and machine guns not small hand guns- shooting induced T and hearing loss from the army , and we also did shoot very loud anti tank rockets and bazookas in one or two occasions back then. I was in the anti-tank unit.

      Being young my ears were still fresh so to speak. And we were motivated to practice against a potential invasion by the Soviet Union..not a name you hear often these days though

      All these weapons will give you some hearing damage over time even with the best hearing protection (plugs & muffs) because the noise is just too much ....and lately I did shooting at a range which made it considerably worse and that gave me the current Tinnitus I had it the minute I left the range which has not changed much since...I guess I also prepped my ears for T with 3 decades of loud clubbing in Europe then Asia - the sound level is just crazy there with no rules whatsoever - and more loud music at home and in my cars as I had somewhat bad ears...no wonder how

      I forgot to mention that I also removed the muffler from one of my 500ci v8 car so It went crazy loud for years but that's the way I liked it.

      In perspective I am surprised it took me even so long to get the T ..seems like it was overdue.

      back to the subject..

      I am still able to put T in the background using his BTS method though - at least for a few minutes.

      It does work not sure how.

      I am not a depressive person by any shot and never visited a shrink or took any pyscho. medications in my whole life including sleeping meds, and I lost my jobs and various GF's and even my mother at some point in life too...but again,now the sound is there 24/7 even though its possible to put it back into the subconscious where it belongs and that's just one of the method using the mind power and no medications.
       
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    13. I who love music
      Cheerful

      I who love music Member

      Location:
      Michigan
      Tinnitus Since:
      mid seventies
       
    14. Alue

      Alue Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      I just don't understand how talking to yourself can make the T disappear, even temporarily. Do people that have success using BTS experience this? That's the thing I can't understand, so you respond to your T but you can hear it immediately after, do you respond to it right away again? I haven't had a moment where I could not hear my T since onset, not a single one.
       
    15. Sailboardman
      Frustrated

      Sailboardman Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Florida
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/21/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Sensorineural hearing loss right ear.
      I've tried this method for 3 months and to date, haven't had a moments silence, unless I'm asleep. When you throw in severe hearing loss, it's another ball game. Even if T wasn't present, the dull, din of deafness, is wretched. Any noise, just overloads the auditory system and it reacts with a heavy hand on the internal volume control. There's just no consistency with reactive T, so your brain just gets confused and has to try and re-learn yet another variation on a theme.

      Even with a hearing aid, shit just sounds weird and the brain knows it. If the noise in your head, is way louder than your TV turned up pretty high, it's kinda hard, not to hear your T, intruding and distorting the overall soundtrack. No Jedi mind trick, can override shit hearing.

      However, I still try to use BTS everyday and also find getting angry at my T, when I'm fed up to my arse with it, works somewhat. My standard chant with BTS, is: "I hear it and I don't want to hear it anymore today." My dark chant is: "I hear it and if it doesn't shut the f..k up pretty soon, I'm gonna kill it!" I'm leaning towards the latter lately! My last utterance in this world will be, Free at last! }:)
       
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    16. noisebox
      Loved

      noisebox Member

      Location:
      Yorkshire, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      West End show. Came back 2015 vitamin D overdose prescribed
      I'm not good at explaining the science behind this logic, but can I say dont use negative because your primitive brain is still at the age of a 5 year old and does not understand negatives.
       
    17. Sailboardman
      Frustrated

      Sailboardman Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Florida
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/21/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Sensorineural hearing loss right ear.
      I understand this, but quite honestly, the BTS method works on you current feelings towards your T. Most of which are negative feelings. "I hear it and I feel depressed," or I hear it and I feel anxious," etc. So, how can this work on the primitive brain successfully? You are reinforcing negative feelings. I have had low days, which just occasionally happens and have said, "I don't hear, so I'm at peace." Or, "I don't hear it and I'm ok." Unfortunately these low periods don't last long and I'm back to relentless noise and it wipes out all the progress I've made.

      I think IWLM's 40 year span of having T, has a lot to do with his success. (I'm sure he'll disagree with me on this.) I would think he has habituated over time, or just has gotten so use to it and he doesn't hear it anymore. The BTS method just coincided, with all the years he's put in with T.

      My brother's had it for 35 years and he doesn't hear it, unless he listens for it. He said it took years to ignore it. He lives a normal life.
       
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    18. Cheza
      Wishful

      Cheza Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Oregon
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Barking dogs/stress
      I think that has something to do with it, that either you've had it for a long time and there have been periods where you don't notice it so you already have established an alternate pathway for the signal, even if seldom used, or you've had it for a short time and can reroute the tinnitus signal pathway from the amygdala to the prefrontal cortex.

      Another thing I'm wondering is whether being involved in a work environment with other people and activity around you throughout the day helps the habituation process. What about those who work from home or stay at home in a fairly quiet environment? Even with sound enrichment, it still isn't enough to distract from the tinnitus.

      This is my second go-round with BTS, and this time I've been applying BTS for several months now with no improvement. I found an article about "amygdala hijacking" which might explain why we're having this trouble. It seems that the ability of our prefrontal cortex to wrest control away from the amygdala is significantly impaired. If living with severe tinnitus isn't a stress signal, I don't know what is.
      Excerpt:
      "If neurons in the amygdala receive stress signals continously from the same stimulus such as exams, fines or workplace hassles they become sensitized making it easier for the amygdala to be hijacked."

      Another article supports that theory.
      Excerpt:
      "... during normal functioning, the enlarged prefrontal cortex in humans can modulate emotional impulses generated in the amygdalae. Continued stressful circumstances, however, can potentiate amygdalae functioning, allowing it to become more powerful—some might even say willful—over time, sometimes exerting subcortical control over our human cortical reasoning. Such potentiated activity can exacerbate symptoms of mental illness, including obsessions and compulsions."

      I don't think it's a stretch to say that tinnitus is a form of obsession. I believe a tendency to OCD and ADHD may predispose someone to tinnitus. Same orchard, different tree.
       
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    19. Wout

      Wout Member

      Location:
      Warsaw, Poland
      Tinnitus Since:
      3/1981
      I have had tinnitus since I was 6 (35 years now). It never stops, but at least it is outside conversation frequencies. Normally, I don't notice it. It gets more noticeable for a day or two when I visit these forums ;)

      I suppose I followed a similar route to BTS, I have 0 emotional response to my tinnitus, I just ignore it and eventually I don't notice it.

      It is never gone, I can hear it whenever I want to, but I don't notice it. Big difference.

      Another data point: the excellent book "The Willpower Instinct" explains in Chapter 9 how thinking about something you must not do ironically leads to you thinking about it more often. This is called ironic rebound. To get around this, they propose giving up instead of fighting: noticing it, accepting it, and ignoring it. I think that's basically BTS?
       
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    20. Mario martz
      Creative

      Mario martz Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2016
      interesting, ive been thinking about that lately, people who dont have any emotional response to tinnitus.
      do you still go to loud places? does it spike with food?
      just wondering.
       
    21. Wout

      Wout Member

      Location:
      Warsaw, Poland
      Tinnitus Since:
      3/1981
      I go to concerts, if it was too loud I have ringing on top of my T.

      My T doesn't change with food or anyhing. It sounds a lot like a train stopping. I can will it louder but not quieter. Sometimes there are some extra frequencies that come to whistle along, like the tones in a hearing test.

      I have the hearing frecuency response of an 80-year-old.

      When I want to concentrate on work, I use in-ear buds and mostly listen to trancey electronic music. Drowns out all other sounds, makes it hard to notice T. I often wonder if coping with T helped me learning to ignore sounds around me.

      I see that for you T comes and goes? I suppose that makes it that much harder to ignore…

      A little trick I use for being around loud sound: I block my nose, close my mouth, and suck in air, pulling a vacuum on my ears. This makes them a lot less sensitive to sound until the pressure stabilizes again. For me that takes a while.
       
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    22. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      This is the valsalva manoeuvre which is used to equalise pressure in the middle ear. It will have no protective effect on your ears whatsoever, and should only be used if your Eustachian tubes are blocked and/or you need to pop your ears to equalise the pressure when rapidly descending in altitude. You are essentially reducing your own hearing by altering the tension on your ear drum which can make sounds duller/quieter, but this is not really advisable as a method of protection. You should use ear plugs or muffs.
       
      • Helpful Helpful x 1
    23. Mario martz
      Creative

      Mario martz Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2016
      Thank you Wout,
      yes for me T Changes a lot.
      changes with food, etc, ill try to follow your trick.
      :)
       
    24. Wout

      Wout Member

      Location:
      Warsaw, Poland
      Tinnitus Since:
      3/1981
      While I agree that actual earplugs are vastly more efficient, setting the wrong pressure in the middle ear will make it harder for the eardrum to vibrate along to sound and therefore somewhat protect the ear from loud sounds, no? Much like putting your hand on a drumskin and tapping it muffles the sound and reduces volume?
       
    25. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      The theory of that is correct, but it's not good to put your ear drum under pressure. You can cause a barotrauma which is another way of getting tinnitus. When sounds become damaging I seriously doubt a tight ear drum would help much. Surely the risk of rupturing your ear drum also increases?

      Ear plugs just go in and you forget about them. Job done.
       
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