Months of Tinnitus Now 95% Gone — Ear Wax Culprit — I'll Never Forget All of You or How I Felt

Discussion in 'Success Stories' started by Jay 2018, Aug 19, 2018.

    1. Jay 2018

      Jay 2018 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ..
      Hello all,

      I hope some of you find comfort in this, or will maybe have the good fortune of getting it resolved by following my lead.

      A few months back, while sitting quietly at home with no external noise, I noticed what I can only describe as a 'white noise / hiss' sound emanating from my left ear. I thought to myself, "Is this something I've had for awhile, but only noticed now? Or did this just materialize overnight?" I quickly drew the conclusion that it must be very new, otherwise it would not have gone unnoticed. As I focused on it (As many of us Tinnitus suffers tend to do whether we want to or not), the volume increased slightly. I stood up, found the quietest place in my house, and focused on this new sound further. An underlying ringing sound accompanied this white noise. I tried blocking my ear with my finger in the hopes of quenching the sound, though as you all know, without effect. It raised anxiety within me, and as time passed and nothing changed, it began disrupting sleep, my daily focus, and I found it difficult to smile from day to day. I researched Tinnitus exhaustively, looking for the cause. I was convinced I found it: I had been a Fire alarm Inspector for many years, rarely using hearing protection while I tested the horns in the buildings we tested from day to day. Despite safety meetings from month to month, I don't recall anyone mentioning this thing called Tinnitus. I must have damaged my hearing as a result of one too many fire alarm tests. I regretted my actions, and wished more than anything I could turn back the clock. I wondered why I was the unlucky one - After all, the other Inspectors I worked with, (some of whom had been exposing themselves to sound a lot longer than I have, also without hearing protection) seem to have been spared the same fate. (As far as I know, that is)

      Anyway, my overall hearing still seemed good though, even the Tinnitus-stricken ear. I did tell myself that a visit to an ENT was in order, though I was fairly confident that my condition was likely to stick with me for the long-term. After all, if it was just ear wax, I'd surely have muffled hearing, which I didn't. I tried ear drops anyway, without effect. I also noticed that the air movement from an air conditioner, or the voice of a person on a cell phone near my ear would aggravate the Tinnitus for awhile. So I stuck with it, learning to adapt for awhile. Some nights I slept well, others I did not. I slowly habituated, at times forgetting about the Tinnitus altogether, but then a stressful day or external noise would dial up the noise, quickly reminding me of what I have. I finally made an appointment with an ENT...

      Upon examination, I had a good bit of ear wax in my left ear. This immediately lifted my spirits.. He quickly removed it using a couple of tools, including microsuction. When he was done, I didn't notice any tinnitus initially, but the noise of the microsuction may have just delayed the response a bit. I was then given a hearing test, which came back with excellent results. I sat in the office, waiting for the Doctor a last time for review. I focused on my ear for a bit while I waited. The white noise / hissing I mentioned was gone!! The underlying ringing was still there though, but reduced in volume. After being assured by the doctor that my hearing was normal, he was confident that the wax was the culprit.

      Today I can tell you that the hissing is gone. The wax did cause it, so for those of you who are relying on your own research to determine the cause may be mistaken. The underlying ringing I described is still present if I focus on it in a quiet environment, though as I said, at a reduced volume that is mainly unnoticeable for all intents and purposes. Perhaps the cause of this IS the cumulative sound exposure from my past, but maybe not. Tinnitus is still a mystery in many ways as you know. Anyway, I'm mainly free of it now, and it's becoming a memory. While I was dealing with it, I told myself that I would reach out to you guys if my Tinnitus faded or disappeared, to encourage those who are battling with it and adapting. Keep your head up and carry on. Time usually does diminish this condition, and don't forget that many people who improve or are cured don't return to this site to write about it. Also, don't get distraught over the fact that there are no cures yet. Technology is advancing so rapidly, in so many domains, that a cure is very possible. The most likely scenario is that more effective treatments will emerge as time passes, becoming more refined, with improvements leading to more improvements until the condition becomes a non-issue. There is more focus on Tinnitus than ever before, which will speed things up.

      Anyway, I'll conclude by saying that many of you were a comfort to me, since I know of no one in my daily life who has Tinnitus. Thank you for this. And if I helped anyone out there with my story, it was worth it.
       
      • Like Like x 7
      • Winner Winner x 2
      • Friendly Friendly x 1
    2. New Guy
      Doh

      New Guy Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      3/18
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise Induced Hearing Loss
      Jay it's so nice your story has a happy ending. I'm glad the solution was simple for you and that your hearing is still excellent. Please take care of that hearing at fireworks, concerts, with earbuds etc. Now that you know how lucky you are you don't want to tempt fate.

      Congratulations again!
       
    3. ringringer
      Wishful

      ringringer Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      8-2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      expired earwax drops, stress, or past exposure from earbuds.
      how excellent.
      hoping this is the case for me -- cheers, mate.

      what tools did he use exactly, if you don't mind me asking
       
    4. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Jay 2018

      Jay 2018 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ..
      Thank you New Guy and ringringer. I appreciate the positive feedback on my story.

      New Guy - Thanks and rest assured I WILL take care of my hearing going forward. This was a wake-up call for sure, and your right.. I don't want to tempt fate at this point.

      Ringringer - Thank you for your words as well. To answer your question though - As far as I could tell, he only used 2 instruments, and the process was so fast that it honestly couldn't have been more than 5 minutes. He used what I think is called a Curette, which is just a long skinny instrument for scooping out the wax. I remember the feel of it on my ear drum. He didn't use ear drops or anything, which spooked me initially, since ear drops are often a recommendation on some these internet sites before having anything done to your ears. It was a little uncomfortable, but not bad, and again, it was very quick. After removing most of the wax, he took a small little vacuum-like device, which is the microsuction part. It literally vacuums out the remaining wax. It was fairly loud, but again, nothing worth complaining about. It was like having the tip of a miniature vacuum cleaner inserted into your ear, which took a minute or 2 at most. That was it. The only other component to the doctor visit was a hearing test, which is also fairly quick.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    5. Contrast

      Contrast Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Retrovile
      Tinnitus Since:
      late 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      injury from noxious noise
      After ear wax removed how long did it take for the ringing to significantly fade?
       
    6. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Jay 2018

      Jay 2018 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ..
      Hi Contrast -
      I noticed it very soon after walking out of the Doctor's office. Typically while driving, with the air conditioner on, the air movement and sound always seemed to aggravate the ringing. But on the ride home from the doctor I noticed that the ear didn't respond nearly as much.
       
      • Like Like x 1
      • Agree Agree x 1
    7. ringringer
      Wishful

      ringringer Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      8-2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      expired earwax drops, stress, or past exposure from earbuds.
      @Jay 2018 and what caused your T originally? do you remember?

      had you often used headphones before getting it?
       
    8. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Jay 2018

      Jay 2018 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ..
      Ringringer -
      The day that I noticed my T for the first time was NOT preceded by a loud event, like a concert. It was a total mystery to me at the time. Admittedly, during my 20's, YES I did wear headphones whenever I exercised, playing the music rather loudly, but over the last several years I did that very infrequently. My best guess was that the T was mainly caused by my years as a Fire alarm Inspector, and my ear finally decided to show symptoms over a year after the fact. After all, I've spent very little time going to concerts / clubs, where there are high levels of noise exposure. As I mentioned in my post above though, the ear wax was responsible for the majority of the noise in my ear. I do still have a little noise if I focus on it though, which could be the result of cumulative noise exposure. It will serve as a reminder to me to wear ear protection at this point. Maybe the Ear wax actually amplified my existing Tinnitus, which I otherwise never noticed before.
       
      • Like Like x 1
      • Hug Hug x 1
    9. Agrajag364

      Agrajag364 Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      09/2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown

      How many months had you had the ringing for before you got the wax removed?
       
    10. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Jay 2018

      Jay 2018 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ..
      Hi Agrajag - Almost 3. I let time take its course and hoped things would resolve, but eventually decided to take further action with it.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    11. Dr. Jay Hobbs
      Studious

      Dr. Jay Hobbs Member Benefactor

      Location:
      central valley California
      Tinnitus Since:
      Blessed to not have...often
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      NA
      That's wonderful. Good for you. Thanks for sharing.

      ...just categorizing in my head...This would fall under the cause of deaffenrentation (loss of [auditory] stimulation), specifically from conduction loss, even more specifically from a plugged ear canal.
       
    12. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Jay 2018

      Jay 2018 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ..
      Thank you Dr Hobbs! I appreciate it -
      It’s interesting how contending with a symptom or symptoms for a long time can really heighten one’s appreciation for health. You realize how precarious it is. You stop taking it for granted.
       
    13. Agrajag364

      Agrajag364 Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      09/2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Was very interested to read about deafferentation @Dr. Jay Hobbs What would the brain's response to such conductive hearing loss be? My unilateral tinnitus was apparently caused by temporary deafness. I had an ear wax impaction misdiagnosed for several months and was deaf in the ear in which I had the impaction for some time. But I did not get the tinnitus until I had been on/off deaf in that one ear for 6 weeks, and constantly deaf for a few weeks. I assumed that somehow my brain had responded to being deaf in one ear and having perfect hearing in the other for an extended period of time and "turned up" this thing I see referred to as "auditory gain". Unfortunately when I had the wax removed my excellent hearing was restored in that ear, but my tinnitus remained. Is it harder for the brain to turn down auditory gain than turn it up, if you know what I mean?
       
      Last edited: Aug 26, 2018
      • Good Question Good Question x 1
    14. Dr. Jay Hobbs
      Studious

      Dr. Jay Hobbs Member Benefactor

      Location:
      central valley California
      Tinnitus Since:
      Blessed to not have...often
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      NA
      Great question @Agrajag364 .
      Yes, it certainly seems to be. We see this in CRPS (chronic pain syndrome) and Phantom Limb sensations. We see these listed together in the literature frequently, because of their similar brain-based presentations and similar deafferentation causes.
      We have approaches for addressing each of them which are moderately effective, on average. Some peoples' cases seem to be particular resistant to recovery, while others are very responsive. Fortunately, tinnitus seems to have at least one more major cause than the others, apart from deafferentation. That is trigger points.
      But for the deafferentation, starting a couple years ago, I have been focusing on the predisposing factors. In my research, I found that a "Healthy Brain Lifestyle" predisposed people to recovery...or to recovery resistance.
      So, for people that effectively eliminate the cause (ear wax, in your case), or do all they can to eliminate or address the cause of deafferentation, but still have the tinnitus, I recommend considering the other cause (trigger points), which may have developed while the other was present, and addressing the predisposing factors (Eating, Drinking, Breathing, Thoughts, Sleep, Movement).
       

Share This Page

Loading...