Introduction hoping for support

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by CPE1978, May 23, 2013.

    1. CPE1978

      CPE1978 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Hi All,

      I hope you are all doing ok. I have hesitated so many time about posting on here because in reality when I hear what some of you are going through then my situation seems incredibly trivial by comparison, but nonetheless I think one of the problems with Tinnitus is getting people to understand.

      I think if I am honest that I have always had some tinnitus, I always remember thinking that rooms had a noise when I was a child, although I may be forgetting when it started. So I suppose I may have had tinnitus for the best part of 35 years. The point at which I went to see my GP was after the milliennium when I decided to see in the new year in Trafalguar Square. At midnight the noise was deafening to the point where the sound became completely distorted and really hurt my ears. I went to the Drs to talk about it and was pretty much told to get over it.

      Obviously that was the best part of 15 years ago now and I have survived absolutely fine until the past few weeks. I should point out that I have a small history of depression and came of SSRIs late last year. For some reason in the past few weeks either I have just become much more aware of my T or alternatively it has got louder. I suspect the former as if I am honest during the day I find it quite easy to ignore (apart from at the moment) and even in a silent room it is just a quiet hiss. My mother has some deafness and so I suspect that i have acquired it from a combination of genetics and hearing damage through loud noises. It is single toned and high pitched, for some reason gets worse when I am watching TV.

      Just recently it has been occupying my every thought. This isnt helped by the fact that an ex girlfriend's dad committed suicide as a result of tinnitus picked up from being in the military and not using proper ear protection. I am consumed with a fear that it will get significantly worse (in spite of most of the evidence pointing to the fact that people tend to cope better with time), and this leads me to worry about the impact that will have on my family should that happen (my wife and kids are everything to me).

      I worry that this is starting to get me depressed and I need to kick out of it quickly as I dont want to hit the meds again.

      I suppose in many ways there isnt that much of a point to this post other than to say hi, and to get a few things off my chest amongst a group of people i know will understand.


    2. Karen

      Karen Manager Staff Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      First time: Noise 2nd Time: Ototoxic drug
      Hi, Chris, and welcome!

      Thanks for telling us your story. You've come to the right place; we all understand what you're going through.

      Your tinnitus may have changed in pitch, and it is possible it could be because of a slight increase in hearing loss. I've had tinnitus for many years myself, and I know how that can be. But, it is also very possible that you'll get used to that "new normal" after awhile, and be able to habituate to it again at the new level. Try not to get depressed, and do give it some time to see if it settles back down again.

      In the meantime, you could try some of the supplements people have mentioned on this forum. There are a lot of things to do and a lot of ways to cope. Look around at the great information on here, and feel free to comment. You might just find something that will help you better cope with the T. I'm all about natural supplements myself; I'm taking B vitamins, fish oil, melatonin, moringa oliefera, COQ10, and I'm considering trying the meclizine that others are trying. Also, don't forget to try some type of sound masking, if you haven't already. All of these things can really make a difference!

      Best wishes, and stay strong!
    3. mick

      mick Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:

      If I'm reading your message correctly it sounds like until recently tinnitus has not been much of a problem for you. That is certainly a good sign - you've had it for a long time, but nothing terrible has happened yet and you've been coping with it well.

      You mention that you've recently started worrying about it, and that you've had problems with depression in the past. A tricky thing about tinnitus is that anxiety and depression can make it worse, though I'm not sure that anyone knows for sure how much of that worsening is due to perception and how much is due to reality. I think it is a combination for many people. Depression by itself can make one introspective and more tuned into bodily sensations that they might not otherwise take note of if not depressed. That is my sense of what you may be experiencing - i.e., your perception of your T has become a little distorted because of your introspection. I'll add though that there is no question that depression and anxiety can change brain chemistry and that there is likely a strong link between actual tinnitus volume (as opposed to perceived) and brain chemistry, and even enough of a link that brain chem imbalance can cause tinnitus through excitotoxicity.

      My suggestion (and I'm not a doctor or tinnitus expert or mental health expert) would be to assess your mental state, and decide if you are experiencing some depression, and if so, work on ways to alleviate it, then see if your T improves. If you are not on an SSRI and think it would help (I think you would probably have a feel for that since you said you've taken them before), then you might want to take one for a while and see what happens. Just be aware that just about all anti-depressants have tinnitus listed as a side-effect. That does not mean that such drugs are certain to cause T (I know of no double-blind studies that prove a strong association between Tinnitus and any A/D medication), only that people have reported getting tinnitus during while being on the medication (both in clinical trials and since the drug has been on the market), so there is some small risk with going back on an SSRI.

      I wish you the best.

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    4. AUTHOR

      CPE1978 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Thanks guys, sometimes it is good to talk. I am an absolute believer in the fact that stress etc can make T worse. I was having a tough time a few years ago and the stress actually gave me pulsile T when I was trying to go to sleep. It quickly passed when I sorted out my mental state!

      In many ways I have never seen my ringing ears as a problem as it is how they have been for as long as I can remember, sounds stupid but I thought that was what silence was like for everyone and never questioned it. Not sure what made me check about Tinnitus but since then I have become a bit hyper aware. I know it is the worse thing to do, but I find myself actively trying to listen to it and deciding if it has gotten any louder. I imagine that this in itself has the potential to make it louder!

      I have chilled out a bit though. I have had it for a long time, it hasn't got discernibly worse and I guess that would indicate that so long as I am careful that it is unlikely to. I have invested in some musician's ear plugs for any big nights out (with two kids they don't happen often). For me it isn't putting up with today, it was the fear of it getting worse. Speaking to the British Tinnitus Association they actually suggested quite the opposite, that for whatever reason (brain perception most likely) that it gets better with time.

      The woman on the phone used a really nice analogy of living next to a busy road, eventually you stop noticing the traffic noise, your brain is good at that. I guess habitualising to tinnitus is very much the same.

      I have read almost every recent post on this site in the last week and sincerely wish everyone the very best in getting better with this.
    5. Robert Fahey

      Robert Fahey Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Jan, 2012
      How do you know his real reason for suicide? Even if he left a note blaming T, that doesn't dismiss his underlying mental status. Everyone here knows T is either a mountain or an ant hill depending on your attitude toward life in general.

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