My Battle with Tinnitus Was Over

Discussion in 'Success Stories' started by Rick Garner, Apr 3, 2017.

    1. Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
      First of all I am not a native English speaker so forgive me if there are any grammar mistakes. I'm posting this in case my experience helps someone else.

      One night in October last year, when I lay down to sleep, I heard this high pitched noise coming from my left ear. I did not pay that much attention and went to sleep. The following morning, it was gone. Then again, in last November (after one month since the first experience) it came back, and this time it is here to stay. It was a pretty high pitched noise, and only in my left ear. After 2 days, I went to see an ENT. He said that my left ear was full of wax and need to be cleaned. Actually he did a good job by cleaning both my ears but some hardly stuck wax was still in my left ear. He gave me ear drops. I went home and used ear drops as per his instructions.

      After two weeks, I revisited him again. He told me that my ears were clean and not to worry about T, and reassured to me that it would go away after 2~ 3 week time. The T was always there 24/7. In the 4th week I started to panic and then anxiety, depression and fear kicked in and started to have sleepless nights. I was sleepless for 3 straight nights. My wife was also started to worry about me but there was nothing she could do to help me.

      Then, I started to google about T. I read a lot of horror stories and realized that there is a very good chance that this thing is going to stay with me for the rest of my life. At first I thought my T started due to hearing loss because I am a great home theatre enthusiast. I have a dedicated home theatre, and have been listening to movie sound tracks at ear shattering levels for more than 20 years. Assuming that it might be a hearing damage, I immediately stopped watching movies, drinking coffee, eating chocolate and cheese intake. By the 5th week I was totally devastated because I could not focus on my work anymore, lost appetite, could not sleep properly, could not enjoy with the things that I used to do and became a recluse in my own home. I thought that my life was basically over. I do resistance training regularly and box 50 minutes for 5 days a week. I am 52 years old, sexually very active, and in great shape. All these things I used to do came to a total halt. T totally turned my life upside down.

      In the 6th week I decided to visit another ENT. This time the ENT asked me to do a hearing test, and to my surprise the results came back fine. That was a great relief for me. I said to myself “wow! My hearing was fine and the T was due to some other reason”. Anyway that ENT put me on Xanax- xr as I told him that I was having severe anxiety, depression and fear. He told me not to worry and it will go away. Starting next day, I realized that Xanax was really helping me with sleep and anxiety. I was able to sleep like a baby for 2 straight weeks. By 8th week, my T was started to reduce in volume. There were 2 different sounds; it was either pitched noise or crickets.

      In week number 8, I stopped taking Xanax because I was afraid that I would become tolerant. I started to listen to sounds of nature at night while sleeping. It helped me a lot. T was there all the time but it was not interfering with my life any more. What I had was somatic tinnitus. I was able to increase the volume by turning my head, clenching my jaws and applying pressure to my head etc.

      In the 1st week of January this year, my wife took me to another ENT to find out what was causing my T. There, the ENT asked me to do another hearing test, and the hearing results were fine but he found out one critical point during the test. He told me that I have ETD (Eustachian Tube Dysfunction) there was no pressure in the left ear. The ENT told me that the T was there because of ETD, and not to worry, and once the ETD is cured, the T would gradually faint and eventually disappear. That was a great relief for me. My confidence was very high. Starting that day, the fear and anxiety started to fade away because I was fully confident that I could get through this. I stared my normal life again. I started to watch my movies, drinking coffee, regular exercises etc.

      The ENT prescribed me a nasal spray and told me that it would take 2~3 months to get the ET back to functioning status. Again I was delighted to learn that my hearing was okay. I went back home and started to use the spray. As time goes by I realized that the volume of the voices in my ear was gradually reducing. By the end of February, the crickets were gone, and left me with only a faint hissing. In the 1st week of March I went back to see the ENT again. The hearing test was done again and found out the ET was back to fully functioning state. I could not describe how joyful I was at that moment. I went home again and kept using the spray. By mid-March, the faint hissing was still there but during the day time I did not notice it at all. I only heard it in bed at night. My faint tinnitus completely disappeared two weeks ago.

      Thanks to this forum. I came here and learnt a lot. Here is my advice to new T sufferers. Don’t just sit there thinking that your T would go away on its own. You have to visit one or two ENTs to find out what is causing your T. This is very important. In my case, I am pretty sure it was my ETD. Don’t always focus on your T because it will definitely make it worse. Stay away from Tinnitus forums once you have read enough. If you really like to read, read only successful stories.
       
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    2. Stressisbad

      Stressisbad Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Stress? Cold?
      That's great - could you mention what sprays your last ENT prescribed?
       
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    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
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    4. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
      Something I forgot to add to my original post.
      1. Coffee, chocolate or any other food never had any affect on my T.
      2. I never wore ear plugs for nearly 6 months since the onset, and had 3 overseas business trips. Two of which lasted more than 12 hours of flight. My T volume never increased during those trips.

      The tests my last ENT did was a tympanogram followed by an audiogram. The nurse placed a probe-type device in my ear canal. It was a little uncomfortable, and I heard loud tones as the device begins to take measurements. This test changes the air pressure in the ear to make the eardrum move back and forth. Measurements of the movement of your eardrum are recorded in a tympanogram. After the test, it showed that there was no idetifiable peak in my left ear while right ear was normal.
       
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    5. Aschenherz
      Dead

      Aschenherz Member

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      8 Feb 2017, 9.20 p.m.
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      unknown
      Do you take all three of these methods or only these for the right use of the spray? How many times a day did you do that?
       
    6. Aschenherz
      Dead

      Aschenherz Member

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      8 Feb 2017, 9.20 p.m.
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      unknown
      the ENT diagnosed an allergic. could this also cause ETD? Is it dangerous to took this spray for a long time? sorry to ask so many questions, i see many similarties to your problem and that get me motivated.
       
    7. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
      I used only the nasal spray. My ENT advised me to spray into both nostrils once a day in the morning. Two shots in each nostril. Right after spraying I did “Valsalva maneuver” about 20~30 times. And then, throughout the day I repeated it every hour. Also, I did chew a lot of chewing gums for the past 3 months or so. That helped me to open up the Eustachian tube. Please note that it takes time but eventually it will start to fade.
       
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    8. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
      And yes, allergies and other nasal, sinus, ear or throat infections can cause ETD. So, correct diagnostic is very important. You can ask your ENT to do a tympanogram to make sure that you have normal middle ear pressure and a normally functioning Eustachian tube. In my case, I had negative pressure in my left ear.

      As for the safety of using the spray, I think it is perfectly okay to use it for 2~3 months (seek advice from your ENT). As you know almost every drug has side effects. In my case, I didn’t even bother to look at those. If I did, it would have only distracted my mind.

      This spray is very easy to purchase but I am strongly advising you to consult with your ENT and make sure that you have ETD. If he is positive, then you can suggest him to use the same spray that my ENT prescribed.
       
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    9. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
      One more important thing is to manage your anxiety, depression and fear. (easier said than done) These three things are like pouring fuel to the fire. I totally lost control during the second month after the onset. I almost lost my job (I’m a power transformer designer). I was not able to focus on anything. Affected the relationship with my wife. The bedroom became a hell. I slept alone in a different room for two and a half month. I thought that I would never be able to recover. But as time went by, the T became stable, and the volume came down to what people here called “base level”. From then on, my confidence started to build up. My last two ENTs are very helpful, they never told me to go home and “learn to live with it”.

      Also, try to stay away from quite rooms, and always do something to divert your attention away from T. Don’t go to quite rooms and check the volume level. If your T is as a result of some other reason rather than hearing damage, then, the chance of recovery is much higher. Hope this helps. And I wish and pray for other fellow T sufferers speedy recovery.
       
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    10. JimChicago

      JimChicago Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      3/2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Dental Drilling
      Thanks for posting Rick. What was name of the prescription ear drops? My ENT mentioned something about ear drops too.
       
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    11. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
    12. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
      Update:
      My T is gone for 3 weeks now and has not returned.

      Lots of prayers to you all!
       
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    13. Nordland90
      Grumpy

      Nordland90 Member

      Location:
      Norway
      Tinnitus Since:
      1 March 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Reason unknown. Perhaps ear syringing.
      I think I have the same problem as you. I have big problems getting my right ear to pop by applying different tricks like valsalvas etc. I went to my GP again last week and he saw that my right eardrum was retracted and gave me nasonex spray that I started using 5 days ago, but only the last 2 days have I done it correctly after watching videos on how to spray.

      I have no problems popping my left ear, but on this ear I have rather loud crackeling sounds when I swallow, did you have this during your struggle?
       
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    14. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
      Hi Nordland90,

      I never had any other sounds other than high pitched noise and crickets. Everyone experiences different sounds, and don’t give that much attention to it. If your T is due to ETD, there is a very high possibility that you can fully recover like I did. I used Nasonex nasal spray for nearly 5 months. Keep in mind that it takes at least 2 months to notice any improvement. In my case, the Eustachian tube cleared up pretty fast. I think it is because I used it correctly as shown in the video I posted above. Remember, it takes a lot of time. Hope you will resolve yours in no time.

      Another link to correct use of spray.

      http://www.fauquierent.net/etd2.htm
       
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    15. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
      One month update:
      My T is definitely gone. It's been a month to date, and I don't hear it anymore.
      New sufferers, just hang in there. Things will definitely get better as time goes by.
       
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    16. Stressisbad

      Stressisbad Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Stress? Cold?
      @rickgarner - do u remember the value for your pressure in the ear that had tinnitus vs the other one?
      Also r u still on steroid spray?
      How is it with u now?

      & did u keep using the steroid spray for 3months or 5?
       
    17. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
      Hi Stressisbad,
      I never had a chance to have a look at the values but I did see the max compliance value was zero in my T affected left ear, which means total negative pressure. I used the spray till the end of March, total duration 5 months. My T vanished in mid March. It's been 5 weeks, and it has gone for good.
       
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    18. Stressisbad

      Stressisbad Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Stress? Cold?
      Thnks for your reply.. All the best wishes u stay healthy.
       
    19. Stressisbad

      Stressisbad Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Stress? Cold?
      How is it with you Rick?
       
    20. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
      Hi Stressibad,
      I was to update my status a few days back but the workload prevented me. Well, yeah. I am living a normal life, the T is really gone and can not hear it even if I listen for it. I assume you have gotten better over time. How are you doing?
       
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    21. Stressisbad

      Stressisbad Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Stress? Cold?
      Hi Rick,
      Am glad you are doing well. :)
      I ve been using the spray everyday since ur post & i feel am getting slightly better... Though i have ups & downs - a lot of the inflammation in my case seems to flare up with eating too - i guess i have alot of it in my body.
      I got mine from 2 colds (Dec & Feb - an ear from each :( ).
      I am also feeling a tiny bit of relief with chamomile tea with freshly squeezed lemons (once the tea cools down a bit).
      Thnks again for your updates.
      Wish u good health.
       
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    22. Zilla

      Zilla Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Hi Rick,

      Thank you so much for sharing your story, I'm happy everything has worked out for you. Your story has made me feel better than anything else I have read on this site, just because your experience seems so remarkably similar to my own.

      I just have a couple of additional questions if you are happy to answer them.

      Did the volume of your T increase after exercise?

      Did you have any idea what your blood pressure was like during this time?

      Was your T worst in the mornings after waking up?

      When your T was improving did you still have bad days, but just fewer and fewer bad days? Was it still going up and down?

      When your T disappeared completely, did it go quiet for a couple of hours, then come back? Or did it just suddenly disappear for good one day?

      Thank you, I can't describe how much better your post has made me feel.
       
    23. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
      Hi Zilla,

      Sorry for the late reply as I am on a business trip and out of the country ATM. Anyway, I am so happy to reply to your questions.

      1. No, my tinnitus did not respond to exercise, loud noises or caffeine intake.

      2. I am a diabetic so I usually measure my blood pressure. It was pretty normal during my struggle with tinnitus.

      3. My tinnitus was very quite right after waking up and stays like that way for the whole day long.

      4. In the first 3 months, it was like going up and down. Starting third month, it became like a hissing barley
      noticeable and stayed that way until mid March.

      5. As far as I remember, I went to bed with very mild hissing in the night of March 13th and woke up on the
      following day to notice that I was not hearing it anymore.

      Hope this helps.
       
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    24. bob bauer

      bob bauer Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2005
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      hearing loss- medication
      My ENT checked me and said I had negative pressure in both ears, but he didn't say how to fix it? He prescribed some nasal spray but it didn't work. I have high frequency hearing loss too.
       
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    25. Angelos'life

      Angelos'life Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/28/201
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Hi rick I have Eustachian tube dysfunction but my tinnitus noise raises the volume in my t did your t get louder from noise what you think ?
       
    26. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
      Hi Bob,

      I am sorry for your suffering but I don't know how to help you.
       
    27. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
      Hi Angelos,
      When my tubes got cleared, the tinnitus stopped. Nope, my tinnitus had no reaction to loud noises, food or drinks. I always enjoyed/enjoy my home theatre at pretty loud volume levels. Just hang in there. It will take a lot of time before you see some improvement. For me, it was ETD which caused my tinnitus for sure.
       
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    28. just1morething
      Benevolent

      just1morething Member Benefactor

      Location:
      U.S.
      Tinnitus Since:
      2008
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      barotrauma, noise exposure, TMJ, neck?
      @Rick Garner, I'm glad you're better and normal now. Why does it take 2-3 months to get your ET back to functioning status? Would ear tubes be a good way to test this out? Mine could be from noise exposure, but I had eustachian tube problems on a airflight years ago. Did you have any static hissing sounds? Thanks.
       
    29. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rick Garner
      Fine

      Rick Garner Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/ 2016 (T free since mid March 2017) 
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD (most probably)
      Hi Just1,

      It takes several months to fully clear up clogged Eustachian tubes . Actually, my ENT told me that it would take even longer than 2~3 months. The pressure in my left ear was totally negative when it was tested. My ENT was pretty sure that the high pitched noise that I had was due to ETD. I used the spray everyday using the correct method as shown in the third post of this thread. Right after spraying I did “Valsalva maneuver” about 20~30 times each hour. That might have helped me to restore the pressure in my ears pretty fast. And yes, I had very mild hissing starting 3rd month till it stopped after another two and a half months.
       
    30. just1morething
      Benevolent

      just1morething Member Benefactor

      Location:
      U.S.
      Tinnitus Since:
      2008
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      barotrauma, noise exposure, TMJ, neck?
      Thanks Rick. I have a lot of Flonase bottles on hand that is similar to Nasonex, so I will use that instead. I also have a EarPopper to use in addition to doing the valsalva maneuver.
       

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