Just passed my 17th year

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by tubetvdude, May 1, 2013.

    1. tubetvdude

      tubetvdude Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      April 28, 1996 is when my life changed. While watching TV on an otherwise normal evening, I started to hear what sounded like a high-pitched hissing somewhere in the room. I thought it was coming from the TV, but after hitting the mute button on the remote, I discovered it was coming from inside my head and ears. Over the next year, I had every test imaginable performed - 3 MRI's, hearing exams, allergy tests, audiometric evaluations, etc. Everything came back normal. No hearing loss, no tumors, and nothing irregular. So I tried my best to live with it.

      A few months after the first noise started, I began hearing a low-pitched hum in my right ear. It eventually spread to my other ear and entire head. This noise made the high-pitched squeal seem like nothing. The humming became the hell in my life and robbed me of any pleasure for about 5 years. If I listened to music or even strummed my acoustic guitar, the humming increased. It was like living on a propellor plane 24 hours a day. Sleeping was a rarity. And the depression over it all made me suicidal.

      I was finally convinced to get on an antidepressant after trying everything else. My doc put me on Effexor XR, and within 2 weeks, the humming disappeared. I was ecstatic. For the next 12 months I had my life back again. Even though I still heard the high-pitched hissing, that horrible humming was gone. I could listen to and play music again. I clould go out and be with my friends again in virtual silence. But then one morning I woke up to discover that my year of freedom was over. The humming had returned, and along with it, the depression. I tried inceasing the Effexor, but that only made me feel like a zombie. My doc switched me to Paxil, Zoloft, and Wellbutrin over a period of about a year, but they didn't help.

      Jump to 2005, I decide to move cross-country for reasons I won't go into here. A friend convinces me to get on Lexapro as this is the latest entry in the SSRI world. For the next several years, I feel good - depression is manageable, and the humming is long gone. I am functioning like a normal (whatever that means) human being again. But as of last week, the humming returned with no known cause. I'm attributing it to stress about another major life change I'm about to make, or it could be that my brain is malfunctioning again. I'm still on Lexapro, so I don't know what to do except ride it out. Hopefully, this relapse is temporary, and I won't even be thinking about it in a few weeks.
    2. mick

      mick Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      Wow, I feel for you! You certainly have interesting, different, and clearly disconcerting case. I don't think I've heard of anyone else getting relief from tinnitus from SSRIs. Did Lexapro ever effect the high pitched T, just the low pitched hum? I hope this is just a temporary relapse for you. Keep us posted.
    3. AUTHOR

      tubetvdude Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      The high-pitched sound has never gone away. It's fluctuated in volume over the years, but that's about it. I just started a regimen of Lexapro again after my doc switched me to Celexa for about a month. My depression and anxiety returned during that time, so I'm hoping a return to Lexapro will help me feel better.
    4. Lord of the Ring

      Lord of the Ring Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Reading so many stories here on Tinnitus Talk and I must say that yours is different, but not that different.
      The pattern I see (maybe I'm wrong, you know) is that people who are prone to anxiety, depression and panic attacks also experience the worst tinnitus and have the most changes in their tinnitus.

      I don't think that this is illogical, since the ears and the processing of what we hear in our brain, has always been our first trigger for danger. Back in the days of the jolly cavemen, ears where an alarm, much more as a necessity for communication. An auditive alarm might arm other bodily functions and put you in a state of (mild) anxiety to prepare you to react to danger. Maybe that's why most people with tinnitus are completely wasted by the end of the day, even if that was a calm, relaxing day. I mean, you are in a constant state of alarm, ready for danger coming your way. Despite the fact that I don't really fancy all that therapy so much, I do think that training the brain that there is no danger, helps in disconnecting the sound you hear from the fear your brain thinks it represents.

      I think what I'm trying to say is: learn how you can control your anxiety and perhaps you will have more control over your tinnitus.

      Or maybe if simply think too much :D
      • Like Like x 2
    5. Carla

      Carla Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      The onset of tinnitus, especially with unknown cause is enough to turn the most laid back person into an anxious mouse. Anxiety and tinnitus feed off of each other, and as I saw doctor #6 a few weeks ago it was so refreshing for them NOT to address the anxiety first and foremost, but really took my tinnitus seriously. I just started sound therapy a couple of weeks ago, and have hope for the first time in 2.5 years. Ever tried this?
      • Creative Creative x 1
    6. LadyDi

      LadyDi Member Benefactor

      Florida, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      You know, LOTR: I often have wondered why it is I feel so damn exhausted at the end of the day now that I have tinnitus, even though I try to take good care of myself and get enough sleep. I think you have hit on something; those of us who have an anxiety reaction to tinnitus are constantly in flight/fight mode, even if our anxiety now is controlled and we don't notice it. Thanks for bringing it up.

      And Carla: What kind of "sound therapy" are you trying? I am getting ready to start something myself.

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