Loud Concert 3 Months Ago — I'm Still Having Symptoms, Burning / Itching Ear

Discussion in 'Support' started by Nathan45, Jan 10, 2019.

    1. Nathan45

      Nathan45 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Rock concert
      I attended a loud concert 3 months ago... 3 hours of unprotected exposure from the 4th row. I'm a 39-year-old male in good health and I do not take any meds or have any known pre-existing hearing problems. After the show I knew immediately something was wrong, ear fullness, tinnitus, and a sense of something crawling in my left ear. Right ear asymptomatic. I had a hearing test and it showed I loss about 25 dB at 4 kHz, a noticeable notch that the ENT said was mild/moderate hearing loss.

      He diagnosed me with temporary threshold shift and said I'd get better. 3 months later and I'm still having noticeable symptoms.

      The biggest thing I notice is that my affected ear seems to get "tired" toward the end of the day and begins to burn. The fullness sensation is gone, the sensation of deafness is mostly gone, BUT I am left with sense that my affected ear is "open". I mean like it feels like my right ear has a comfortable "filter" in place and my bad ear doesn't. This is accompanied by tinnitus that can range from barely noticeable to noticeable but not so loud I can't hear anything else. Sound doesn't hurt per se… I don't perceive any quiet sounds as loud, I don't have fear of any sounds. It's not like any sounds really bother me but just the constant feeling of a "raw wound" in my left ear that eventually progresses to sunburn sensation by the end of the day.

      I've found that loud noises don't seem to bother me, I can go to a restaurant, I can watch tv or listen to music, BUT by the end of the day my ear starts to itch/burn like deep in the ear canal. One noise that seems to accelerate the onset of the ear burning is the sound of my computer fan... it's only like 55 dB but it really becomes bothersome. I go to bed and wake up relatively decent in respect to the burning but the feeling of my ear being like an "open microphone" persists with the tinnitus.

      I've notice that if I put in an earplug I get almost complete relief of all symptoms. Also if I put in an ear bud and listen to soft pink noise it seems relieving.

      I have another appointment with a different Neuro-ENT next week but wanted to see if anyone has heard of these types of symptoms?
       
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    2. Juan

      Juan Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Several causes
      Those are clear signs of hearing damage caused by excessive noise, exposure to dangerous decibel levels. Those symptoms, in time, may go away by themselves or otherwise they may turn into a series of hearing problems, including the hearing tiredness and the tinnitus you are experiencing. In the long run is quite hard to predict how damage caused by noise is going to evolve, but your ears will not be able to deal with noise and adjust to noise as well as an efficiently as before, as healthy ears do.

      In general damage caused by noise cannot be fixed, but maybe in a few months you will feel better. Take it easy because hearing heals extremely slowly, which can be exasperating and very frustrating.

      A piece of advice: be really careful with noise. If at any time you feel bad in a situation involving noise just leave or use hearing protection. With damaged ears hearing protection may not always be enough, that's why sometimes it is better just leaving and getting away from the noise source.
       
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    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Nathan45

      Nathan45 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Rock concert
      Thank you Juan for the reply. Have you dealt with this personally? In your opinion is it better to overprotect with ear plugs, or no ear plugs and just protect from dangerous sounds, OR proactively use something like constant pink noise? I've been using a sound machine at night this whole week and I generally go to bed feeling "decent" but am awakened by ear pain/tingling/a sensation of something crawling in my ear. I turn the machine off and fall back asleep. This has happened with white noise, brown noise, pink noise and running water sounds.

      I didn't think I was sensitive to noise because routine daily noise, even louder noises, don't seem to bother me but the constant noises as described above seem to bother me a lot. I would just as much prefer quiet but I want to help myself to recover from this if I can.
       
    4. Digital Doc

      Digital Doc Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise induced
      I don't have your burning or fullness sensation. I find it preferable to be quiet at night, and don't use white noise at all. Have you tried sleeping with the WNG off? At times it can be too loud, and make the T worse for some folks. I find ear plugs at night helps the T go down for me.

      Would suggest to not use ear buds or headphones to listen to anything, including pink and white noise. They are simply too close to the ear and should be avoided at all times. The white noise should be played at low volume, a little less than the T tone.

      This process can definitely take longer than 3 months, so stay on it. Also, during the day, no need for ear plugs all day, but lean towards overprotection at this stage of the process. If you think it sounds loud, it probably is, and avoid it and/or use hearing protection is the general rule of thumb.
       
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    5. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Nathan45

      Nathan45 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Rock concert
      Thank you
       
    6. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Nathan45

      Nathan45 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Rock concert
      I just started using the WNG because I thought maybe it would help my cause. I wake up feel 'ok' but by noon, my ear fatigue kicks in and I start noticing the sensation of something crawling in my ear and then eventually itchy pain. I definitely don't have any problems with any soft sounds sounding abnormally distorted or loud, just this sense of tiredness and eventually pain in my ear. I heard it may take at least 6 months and up to 2 years to see where this is going to end up... frustrating to say the least. I had no idea this could happen from loud noise exposure.
       
    7. Digital Doc

      Digital Doc Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise induced
      Yes, crappy disease to deal with!

      I would try it without the WNG, and see what happens. If you need it to go to sleep, you could also try it on a timerat a lower volume via an external speaker, say about an hour or so. From what you describe, all night long sounds too long for you.

      Any occupational noise exposure to be concerned about? That may be playing into this as well.
       
    8. Contrast
      No Mood

      Contrast Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Clown World
      Tinnitus Since:
      late 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise injury
      you have pain hyperacusis

      Burning, fullness, itching, acid under the skin sensations are all sign of neurotrophic pain.
      You need to let your ears heal as much as possible and hope research speeds up so there is a way to permanently escape this.

      Tell me more about the itching.. that's a bit odd.
       
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    9. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Nathan45

      Nathan45 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Rock concert
      No, I am a healthcare provider, not a noisy environment. I did have issues with a computer fan but I moved that computer. Digital Doc, I see you have noise induced T, do you have personal experience with single acoustic trauma like mine? Did you have the same symptoms? Did they generally improve?
       
    10. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Nathan45

      Nathan45 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Rock concert
      Contrast. The itching is just my best way to describe the sense of something moving inside my ear, like there is a bug in there or something. Make me want to stick my finger in my ear.

      Seriously I mostly have very little T. Just this pain like an earache/burning sensation that worsens through the day.
       
    11. Juan

      Juan Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Several causes
      I have dealt with what you are describing and also with much worse symptoms, including severe hyperacusis etc etc They can be triggered or get worse with noise exposure.

      My advice would be to avoid the WNG and objectively loud situations for a few months, as getting better or recovery is a very slow process. For instance, the computer fan is a subjectively annoying situation, and this means that it is bothering you and making your hearing react in a non-standard way, but it is not loud on a decibel scale.

      The sort of sounds that you want to be very careful with are sounds that, measured on a decibel scale and talking in general terms, are at or above 80 dbs, and specially sounds that are very loud and sudden (impulse noise).

      Take into account that there are sounds above 80 dbs produced by things we use commonly at home, for instance a vacuum cleaner, a mixer or blender, a hair dryer, etc Outside home it would be best if you are not around noisy places for a couple of months, just listen to your body, see in which situations your ears feel comfortable and what situations make them feel tired.

      If you dont feel ok with noise at a certain situation, use hearing protection, earplugs or earmuffs inmediately. Carry earplugs with you.

      Try to listen to music at home, on speakers, at a volume you feel comfortable with to try to get your hearing used to all kinds of sound and frequencies.

      Try to live as stress free as possible for some time, as strees makes hyperacusis, tinnitus etc worse..

      Eat healthy and make some exercise. This is needed to keep your ears ok. The body produces endorfins when exercising and a good diet that includes vitamins and minerals is good for hearing.

      There is a better choice of recovery now, at the early stage of hearing problems, than further on so dont risk your hearing unnecessarily. You may have a choice to recover or get a lot better if you are careful. Of course a bit of luck is needed.. there is noise everywhere and you never know.. good luck!
       
    12. JohnAdams
      Festive

      JohnAdams Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Vatican
      Tinnitus Since:
      May 1st 2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Aspirin Toxicity/Possibly Noise
      the government needs to step in a regulate concert levels.

      I've been to too many concerts where the volume was ridiculously louder than it needed to be.
       
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    13. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Nathan45

      Nathan45 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Rock concert
      JohnAdams, I am absolutely amazed that there isn't some kind of OSHA regulation on noise levels. I mean everything in the US is soooo regulated now, I can't believe this isn't something that they regulate. Like why the hell don't they have someone with a dB meter keeping an eye on noise levels in realtime during a concert? This is mind blowing to me. This was my first ever indoor concert. I have been to no less than 40 outdoor shows in the "cheap seats". I had absolutely no idea I was putting myself in harms way. The devastation I've been going through the last 3 months is crazy as I know everyone on this board knows. I am hopeful I will recover and after perusing this board there are many with worse issues but this has been the toughest challenge I've faced in my life. It has impacted every aspect of my life and I pray every day for relief. I'm going to see a supposedly good neuro-ENT next week but I am not optimistic there will be much help to be had other than waiting this out and letting the body take it's natural process.

      Do you have personal experience with a noise injury from a concert? Did you suffer with symptoms similar to mine? How did it play out?
       
    14. Juan

      Juan Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Several causes
      Just to add these food items that may help: green tea (leaves, no teabags), ginger, curcumin, turmeric, raw garlic, raw onion, smoked salmon, lemon juice, mackerel, sardines, beef liver, dry fruits (sunflower seeds, nuts, hazelnuts, etc), fruit (kiwi, mangoes, etc all fruits generally), octopus, squids...

      Eating healthy does help. Also, take a blood test, see if you lack any vitamins... sunbathe! Vitamin D.

      It is good to stretch too, as there are many muscles that have an influence on how we hear, and trigger points.
       
    15. Digital Doc

      Digital Doc Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise induced
      OSHA applies to work, and not recreation. There are OSHA regs that require employers to offer hearing protection to employees starting at 85 db's, and mandate it at 90 db's. Even that falls short as it lower in other parts of the world, such as Germany that requires hearing protection at 80 db's.

      My acoustic trauma was garden equipment, specifically a weed whacker.
       
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    16. Lane

      Lane Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Single 25 mg. Dose of (Anticholinergic) Drug Promethazine
      I don't know if you're open to somewhat alternative ideas to support that natural process, but apple cider vinegar is often mentioned on this forum. Here's is a LINK to a post which touches on how it worked well for one person (snippets below). You may want to start out with a weaker dilution for the ear drops, like 10% or so, until you know how your ears react to it. But it wouldn't surprise me if it helped the itching you're experiencing. -- Best...

      *APPLE CIDER VINEGAR!!!! I think this was the best thing I did. 2 tsp diluted in 10 oz water 3x per day (10 min before each main meal). Be sure to rinse your mouth and gargle. The vinegar will ruin enamel on your teeth if you don't rinse.
      *APPLE CIDER VINEGAR!!! I mixed a 30% ACV 70% water solution and did 1/2 ear dropper in each ear 3x per day.

      As a health care providor, you may also find this thread interesting...

      Sodium Thiosulfate — "May" Help w/ Hearing Loss and/or Tinnitus
       
    17. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Nathan45

      Nathan45 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Rock concert
      Jesus! I was just on here writing how my sense of deafness and tinnitus we’re improving and my burning pain was the only remaining issue.

      Then 4am this morning I wake up with intense tinnitus and a profound sense of hearing loss! I retested my Audiogram this morning... for the last 3mos. I’ve had Normal hearing with the exception of a 25dB loss at 4K. This morning... a 25dB loss at 2k and a 40 dB loss at 4K.

      The only thing I did different last night at bedtime was to switch my noise generator from white noise to crickets.

      What the hell!?!? Can you just suddenly have an additional hearing loss 3mos after the original injury? Could this just be a TTTS symptom?
       
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    18. DaveH

      DaveH Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Feb-2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      I've had these symptoms too: itching, burning, feeling something is crawling deep in your ear. I can especially relate to the feeling that a comfort filter has been removed leaving the ear to feel "open" and more sensitive all the time. These are symptoms of hyperacusis.

      I developed moderate tinnitus after loud noise exposure and the hyperacusis came on about two weeks later. While the tinnitus is definitely bothersome at times, the hyperacusis is by far the more troublesome issue for me. It results in ear pain from sounds that are not typically bothersome to "normal" ears. Sometimes my own voice causes a buzzing sound in my ears and mild pain. The pain then sometimes leads to a headache and/or some numbness or tingling in my face right in front of my affected ear. This is presumably due to the face that the nerves involved in hearing are near some of the facial nerves.

      I've had this for almost three years and it has become better since the initial onset but I still struggle with it on some days (but not quite as often and never completely "normal"). I listen to soft rain sounds every night all night (even while I'm sleeping) with the hope that this gentle sound is slowly retraining my brain to get comfortable with sound again (sort of like self-managed TRT). I also take a magnesium supplement with the hopes of relaxing any tense muscles in my ear which may be bringing on TTTS symptoms. I also have tried to stay as optimistic as I can as there is believed to be an element of the limbic system (emotional reaction) that can exacerbate the situation. I rarely use earplugs unless I absolutely must (lawn equipment, vacuum cleaner, etc.) as I am careful not to overprotect my ear. This is important to allow the ear to heal (as best as it will) so that it gets comfortable with sounds again as opposed to stifling the healing through constant overprotection.

      After three years, I'm not sure if my progress is due to any or all of the above or just passage of time, but in the interest of continued healing I will keep doing these things.
       
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    19. JohnAdams
      Festive

      JohnAdams Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Vatican
      Tinnitus Since:
      May 1st 2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Aspirin Toxicity/Possibly Noise
      I was in a band for awhile as the drummer and I've been playing guitar for years. I was playing guitar but the time I got my hearing damage/tinnitus, is was on a high dose aspirin and I think that was the determining factor.

      What are your symptoms?
       
    20. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Nathan45

      Nathan45 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Rock concert
      JohnAdams. I have had some noise exposures trough life associated with rifle shooting/hunting. I’ve been to several loud concerts through college and such. But The loudest I ever went to was in October 2018. Metallica indoor show. Immediately following the show I had 3symptoms... fullness/sense of deafness, tinnitus, and a feeling of something crawling in my left ear. Audiogram shows a 25dB loss at 3-4K. Now my tinnitus and sense of deafness seem mild but I am left with a feeling that my ear is “open” like my good ear has a comfortable filter and my bad ear does not. This is not painful per sae but just doesn’t feel right. Then as the day wears on my ear feels tired. The crawly sensation returns and that eventually turns into a burning by the end of the day. I don’t have any amplification of sounds and I don’t have like immediate stabbing pain with any sounds. Just a chronic sensation like there is an open wound deep in my ear. I’ve also noticed that mechanical sounds like fan noise and running water seem to accelerate the onset of the prickly burning sensation. That’s weird you mention NSAIDs. I also was taking a lot of Aleve and aspirin for an unrelated injury immediately prior to the Metallica show.
       
    21. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Nathan45

      Nathan45 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Rock concert
      Wow. 3 yrs and still struggling with the pain. That is not great to hear. Have you ever talked with or known anybody to get better outcomes than you? I mean I was hopeful that within a year or so I could recover from this chronic pain. It is quite annoying and borderline disabling.

      A couple of questions... how did your improvement progress... I mean was there rapid healing in the first few months then a slow grind or has it all been a slow grind? When did you first start thinking to yourself “i think the pain is getting better.”? Do you still have a sense that your ear gets “tired” at the end of the day or is it just pain when you are exposed to sound?

      Thank you for sharing with me. I’ve been struggling to find anyone that understands what I am going through. Even my ent said he did not have experience with my presentation. And he’s been in practice 30 years. Scary.
       
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    22. Johan_L

      Johan_L Member

      Location:
      Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      How lou

      I've had mild T in both ears for 7 years and H for 4 years in one ear. When on Aleve for unrelated injury combined with noise that was a bit loud, but nothing extreme, both my ears came down with severe H.

      Never touching NSAID again
       
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    23. DaveH

      DaveH Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Feb-2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      I know how you feel, it can be troubling to think this will go on for years. Unfortunately, however, I don't know of anyone who has experienced a true "cure" from this. My experience in researching over these years and perusing various online forums and sites is that people do improve over time and do habituate to a large degree, but not completely. Because this is a relatively rare condition there is limited funding and research but it is good to know there are people trying to understand it. It is difficult though because I think much of what is going on is within the brain so it is a complex mechanism to understand let alone cure.

      As far as progress, it's hard to pinpoint any moment where all of sudden I noticed improvement. And for me I don't recall rapid improvement in the first year (sorry to say). It has been more gradual over the last 3 years but I know it has improved. Initially I felt better in humid conditions thinking that humidity bathed the inner ear and relaxed muscles better but I can say now that even during winter I have a lot of good days too... although I do think there are a lot of factors (weather being one) that causes it to fluctuate from day to day. I wouldn't characterize my ear as "tired" at the end of the day but on worse days I do think I am tired from expending too much emotional energy on it. This is why I try (as best I can) to remain optimistic. The stress doesn't help in any way but there are days it just gets to me.

      Don't lose hope though! Your situation may improve faster than mine. And even if it doesn't, it will improve. It sounds like you've already been doing some research (as I did too) and that is a very positive step. Like you, I went to multiple ENTs and they just don't get it. In their defense they can't see anything physically wrong and we know research hasn't figured it all out yet but it can be frustrating for the "experts" to not have answers! Nobody can possibly appreciate what this feels like unless you've experienced it.
       
    24. Juan

      Juan Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Several causes
      Bad thing about that is that it was indoors, so sound would be bouncing all around. That's bad.

      There's no real cure for hyperacusis, so the best to do is just trying to be careful with loud sound and try to keep living your life as normally as you can. There's no more about hyperacusis nowadays, really.
       
    25. Digital Doc

      Digital Doc Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise induced
      Sounds like TTTS from the cricket noises all night. I would try sleeping quieter. I started sleeping with ear plugs in last month and believe it has helped quite a bit. I have a little bit of H as well as the T and found the ear plugs did the trick to muffle the relatively low traffic noise that was randomly walking me up from the occasional noisy passing car as my bedroom is in the front of the house.
       
    26. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Nathan45

      Nathan45 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Rock concert
      Thank you. I ended up taking a small dose of Pred. from the doctor and within 12 hours my hearing returned to baseline. I'm not sure what did it but I had a major inflammation spike. Felt like my whole left ear was numb. Never had that sensation of numbness/deafness before, either prior to or since my onsetting acoustic trauma in October. Scared the shit out of me. I'm happy to report today I seem back on track. Hopefully recovering...hopefully
       
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    27. Digital Doc

      Digital Doc Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise induced
      Great news, and hope the improvement lasts!
       
    28. DaveH

      DaveH Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Feb-2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      I also took Prednisone at onset of tinnitus and hyperacusis and I felt so much better. I felt like I was cured. But unfortunately my symptoms returned after the course of meds ended. I hope you have better luck and the improvement lasts. Keep us posted!
       
    29. Juan

      Juan Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Several causes
      Great news! you're a lucky guy! :)
       
    30. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Nathan45

      Nathan45 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Rock concert
      I went to neuro-ent at a big local hospital system. He had nothing to offer. Actually seemed like he had not ever seen a patient with my symptoms of noise induced ear pain. It actually surprised me quite a bit at his lack of experience with my presentation. Told me to give it time and protect from loud noises. ..... thanks.
       
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