I Have to Get a Satisfactory Click When Inserting ER-25 Earplugs — Is This OCD?

Discussion in 'Support' started by Elfin, Oct 31, 2019.

    1. Elfin
      Wishful

      Elfin Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2004
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud concert
      Hi all,

      Looking for a bit of community feedback from those who wear ER-25s.

      I’m struggling currently with spikes etc and just wondering if this is an anxious byproduct of that, or something others do.

      Basically, before putting the earplugs in, I take the filters out and then push them back into the earplug until they make a satisfactory click. If they do not click in as desired, I repeat the process until they do. The reason I ask whether this is this OCD, is that I can spend an inordinate amount of time doing this (we are talking a good hour and bit minimum to do both before I feel that they are sealed effectively enough to go out).

      This seems excessive and mentally ‘ill’. My wife is getting hugely frustrated with it, as am I, but if I don’t do this I can’t enjoy being out, feel panicked as though the plugs aren’t working and seek ‘silent’ places where I can repush the filters in.

      Any help/feedback greatly appreciated - good and bad!

      Thank you.
       
    2. Bartoli

      Bartoli Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2009,worsened 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      I think it's exaggerated. You're not even supposed to take the filters out. I mean you can do it but it serves no real purpose. I have custom plugs and I'm going by feel to check whether they form a good seal. It can be annoying sometimes. The fact that custom plugs do have a limited lifespan stresses me out sometimes. I guess the knowledge of them possibly not sealing fully over time could make you undertake these repetitive actions.

      I'm no medical professional, but since you asked: are there other situations where you displayed similar behaviour? It could be OCD and you might want to get it checked out by a psychiatrist if it bothers you.
       
    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Elfin
      Wishful

      Elfin Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2004
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud concert
      thank you for replying @Bartoli, this makes sense and is the kind of feedback I need. Part of me senses that repetitively taking them in and out and clicking them in may be a bit excessive and time wasting, but it works on helping the anxiety, I suppose.

      im just desperate for them to work and still find some noises loud even with them in
       
    4. Bartoli

      Bartoli Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2009,worsened 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      That's not too far fetched. They don't offer absolute protection against just any level of noise. When you feel it's too loud, walk away.

      Personally I would be more concerned about the seal against your ear than the seal of the filter in the plugs. My subjective experience is that when you really need protection, use deeply inserted foam earplugs. You can really feel them sealing up as they expand. With a bit of practice you'll be able to tell when they are well inserted and when not. It's what I use when I can't avoid loud noise, but I'm always relieved to take them out as they can make high pitched tinnitus so much more pronounced. I use custom plugs when the sound levels are lower but still cause fatigue (long drives, around my children sometimes, crowded pubs and so on.)
      I want to ask: when do you wear earplugs?

      One piece of advice I would like to give you : try not to overprotect. Many sufferers, myself included, are likely to overprotect, having their acoustic trauma still in recent memory. So we tend to be overcautious and overprotect and withdraw from social gatherings which can wreak havoc on our social life and mental wellbeing.

      I hope you can sort out your anxiety and other problems, even when they have a connection with your tinnitus. It will likely make your tinnitus easier to deal with when you don't have multiple things on your plate, and ultimately you'll be able to see your tinnitus for what it is, no more no less. All the best!
       
    5. MattS
      Relaxed

      MattS Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Power Tools
      Hi Elfin, not sure that it quite constitutes OCD, but it is definitely heading down the path of an anxiety disorder. Do you have a good therapist that you could see? I think it would be good for you.

      P.S. I'm sorry I didn't respond to your PM - I will tomorrow.
       
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