My Journey Through to Habituation

Discussion in 'Success Stories' started by Shanman, Apr 19, 2019.

    1. Shanman

      Shanman Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      The journey began in September 2017. I woke up with this high pitched, annoying ringing in both ears. As the day wore on, I became increasingly stressed and worried as the ringing simply would not stop or even quiet down. By noon, I was nearing panic mode so I hopped in the car and headed to the hospital. ENT did a series of tests-everything looked normal including hearing. They diagnosed me as having tinnitus which they said was likely an age thing (I was 65), sent me home with powerful sleeping pills (Ativan) and basically told me there is no cure so learn to live with it. Bummer! I was pretty depressed as the ringing seemed to dominate my entire being. My life would never be the same.

      A few days later, I asked the ENT specialist if I could get medication that would take the edge off as I really thought I was going crazy. He referred me to a Psychiatrist who put me on 5 mg of Valium, a powerful depressant that is used to treat anxiety. The Valium eased the stress but by December I became virtually suicidal. I saw my family doctor in February when I told him I needed to get off the Valium. I warned myself down to 2 mg but began having horrible hallucinations and stress returned which were withdrawal symptoms. I then realized just how addictive Valium is. In the meantime, the ringing got worse.

      The family doctor prescribed 100 mg of Sertraline (an antidepressant) which made me feel much better. I also purchased hearing aids that pumped white noise through both ears which were helpful from Day 1. My auditory nerve began chasing the white noise while virtually compartmentalizing the tinnitus. Within a month I was able to eliminate the 2 mg of Valium and by June of 2018, I was off both the Sertraline and the hearing aids.

      Nearly 1 year later I feel and look great. Drug free so I’m my old self. And most importantly, I’m fully habituated.

      Looking back, the Valium, Sertraline and Valium played a role in expediting the habituation process. My journey is now a memory, one that makes me love life more than ever. And when I think about the ringing, which is rarely, it reminds me just how blessed I am.

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