My 1st Year (Reactive) Tinnitus + Hyperacusis Anniversary — A Better Place

Discussion in 'Success Stories' started by Darrenb111, Nov 13, 2021.

    1. Darrenb111

      Darrenb111 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      9th Nov
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      A year ago

      It's been a year and a few days since I woke up in the middle of the night unable to move due to what was probably a flu virus induced inner ear infection which gave me severe vertigo. A few hours later, when the paramedics arrived, I lost all my hearing in my right ear. After some days on anti sickness tablets and steroid tablets, my vertigo improved well enough to drive but my hearing loss turned into horrific distortion and hyperacusis. Everything was loud, some sounds were metallic/electric sounding, hard to describe. Water running, eating crisps, foil, cutlery, mine and other peoples letter s's in conversation. These were some that I recall would sound incredibly loud and give me the same feeling as if it were nails on a chalkboard. Two weeks from the vertigo episode I developed a high pitched whistle/beep in the problem ear. My heartrate was continuously high, I was in fight or flight for a good few months. The tinnitus was reactive to any sound. I had to wear hearing protection in the shower and opposing most peoples experience, silence was my go to place. Life was hard, it was Christmas time, I couldn't be around the family (a then 6 month old daughter found her voice and an excitable 3 year old), they were too much for my ear. I hid away from life, cried to my wife, cried to myself and felt more down than anything I had ever experienced. The doctor was dismissive, only a repeated push got me in a queue for an ENT. I managed to get an MRI which was clear just after Christmas but the wait to see the ENT surgeon was months from there. I would wake up with very low tinnitus and it would build through the day depending on how much noise I would expose myself to. It was a tough time.


      I am in a magnitude better place than a year ago. I still have hyperacusis, I still have tinnitus but they are not as bad as they were. Once I had calmed my mind and got past the initial emotional response, which took around 2 months (!), I realised I was not going to get anywhere fast with the NHS so I booked a private tinnitus clinic in London. The audiologist tried me on an Oticon Minirite hearing aid which she programmed to restrict the input of sound at 6 kHz-8 kHz. This made my hyperacusis 90% better, instantly! I think even she was surprised to see the impact so I feel I got lucky here. This in turn reduced my tinnitus from an 8/10 to 4/10 which to me was a huge improvement. Add CBT, meditation and ear protection over the past year and I can say that I am mostly back to normal life.

      I still have my days, today, now, it is reasonably loud, but there is no emotional reaction. I also know it's because I sat on a ride on lawn mower (with big ear defenders) and I've played around with my daughter who screams with laughter. It's there, it's annoying but tomorrow morning it's a 2/10 when I wake up.

      I write this in hope that someone who may read this may take a breath and have hope that they may also have a better life a year from now. Small steps, month on month improvements, it's a long path and I managed to get to a better place comparatively quickly. I am lucky.

      If I could offer any advice to anyone that has just started their journey with tinnitus/reactive tinnitus or hyperacusis, work on calming the body as much as you can. My world cleared so much once I wasn't full of constant adrenaline. It's exhausting. Know that when you get to this point, your world will improve. A cloud will lift and the emotional reaction will lower. It's easier to deal with life when you are not under huge stress.

      I appreciate that everyone's tinnitus is different, and what worked for me may not work for anyone else. There are a lot of people suffering with these afflictions and I would think that most posts on here are of people asking for help so I would like to give this post as one of hope.

      Best wishes to all,
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    2. Tiumix

      Tiumix Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Neck Injury, Unknown
      Hello Darrenb111,

      Your story definitely resonates with me. A lot of my symptoms were similar to yours in the beginning. Except I also had severe neck pain for 4 months (doctor found a lesion in my spinal cord likely due to an infection or injury).

      After a few rounds of steroids, my neck has improved but the tinnitus has stayed.

      I also had issues with people saying "s"'s as well and hyperacusis for the first 3 months. After getting off the fight or flight mode a month ago, my adrenaline levels definitely lowered but now I am feeling sad about my tinnitus.

      I have an appointment to get hearing aids tomorrow, looking forward to returning back to normal!
    3. MindOverMatter

      MindOverMatter Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown (possibly stress related, and later sound induced)
      Great to hear about your progression!

      "Getting rid" of the negatively loaded emotional reaction towards it is such an important factor to get to the better place where you are at right now.

      It's not always possible to change what it is, but there is room to change our response to it. However, every case and every individual is different.
    4. AUTHOR

      Darrenb111 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      9th Nov
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      It's now been 19 months since my onset of hyperacusis and tinnitus and I would like to update the above post to say I am now hyperacusis free.

      If you've read the above experience, you will see that I was super sensitive to everyday sounds and that would create havoc with the loudness of tinnitus. As of last weekend I can now stand in a busy bar with music and chatter around me and not have any sensitivity to the sounds and this is with my hearing aid no longer in use.

      I still have tinnitus, albeit very low now and I notice it maybe 10% of my day if that.

      My toolkit was:

      Sound Therapy
      Positive mind (as much as was possible under the strain)

      I am so relieved to be where I am and would like to give this message to anyone who reads this that I am another example of how this can and will get better for most people if you work at it with all the tools available to you.

      Best wishes to those in need,
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    5. Travis Henry

      Travis Henry Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2021 textme2146428395
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      1 Moderna Vac, Noise and stress I guess, its killing me
      I pray I can have a story like you. I feel like I'm on my death bed. I pray for everyone's recovery.

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