My story in short

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by PingoJack, Dec 28, 2012.

tinnitus forum
    1. PingoJack
      Spaced

      PingoJack Member

      Location:
      Gothenburg, Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2000
      Dear all,

      I've had T since 12 years. Ironically, I found out after reading a magazine article about a T sufferer. It was completely new to me and I remember my thoughts back then about the horror it must be to live with that sound every awakened minute of the day (and night). I drew the wrong conclusion that T must be rare, since I had never heard about it before. With the article fresh in mind, a few days later I did a test of just laying in my very quite room and listen for "inner" sounds. Of course I heard something, as most people will do. However, back then I was horrified. Needless to say it was a very weak sound (left ear) and easily masked and not noticed for most of the day. However, as the T ignorant I was I focused my attention at the T and this made me very anxious and unfocused. This I believe gave me hyperacusis, which in hindsight, was a much more severe problem at the time. I went to a couple of physicians and it made me no less worried. I had bad luck I guess cause they had no fingertip feeling how to approach a T patient. I went through two semesters at the university and hardly opened a single book cause of the lack of concentration (I made it somehow by taking good notes and by giving extra attention at lectures and practicals). I then felt it was enough and I decided to work on it on my own. I borrowed books at the library and bought books on-line. I started reading at cafés and in public spaces for masking the T. KBT became my temporarly savior. The hyperacusis went away and T became something I did not suffer from. In fact, the ideas about positive associations and reading about success stories was so successful for me that T became a "friend" for a few years. I can hardly believe it at the time of writing, but that was the situation for me. I actually got worried once when the T seemed to have gone away, since it gave me a wierd sense of comfort. Sounds crazy I now! Anyway, since a few years it is not as friendly anymore. The introduction of a higher pitch made it very difficult to associate to something positive and it is much more intrusive. I also got it on the right ear (much more low-frequency though). The left ear T is not nearly as easy to mask as it once was. I still get very anxious from time to time, when T takes a jump. This happened just a few weeks ago after a very stressful time in my life, when I finished my PhD thesis and had my dissertation. The stress may have had its share in it, but the event that triggered it was a visit to church, weeks after. Irony again, I am a non-believer and went only for my fiancée's sake AND I forgot my bloody ear-plugs. I hate to admit it to myself, that a single event like this could make a difference, but I guess it can and I should know it. But its hard and impossible to be on alert all the time, mistakes are made. I have been through these jumps before and "recovered", I am positive that I will make it again even though I feel low at the moment (but I have so at times before). It just takes energy, time and finding the right coping each time, but my experience is that the recovery time will be shorter by each T setback, which is positive. My strategy is to find ways to relax, floating works for me. I also now that when I force myself to read, read and read my focus gets better and better by time. It has to, since research is my occupation and concentrated reading is a big part of it. I also play games on my smartphone to practise focusing. At the onset of T I also challanged myself regularly, to prove to myself that I could accomplish things as good as before T. It may be encouraging for some of you out there that I finished my masters and I worked myself through a graduate program in planetary science to received my PhD despite having T. You can accomplish your goals as well! Do not let T govern your life!
       
    2. Fish
      Balanced

      Fish Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Poland
      Tinnitus Since:
      July 2012
      This was a great story, very encouraging for someone like me, a relatively new sufferer.

      I wish I was as strong as you and managed to overcome this condition completely and have such a positive attitude. I am back to my former self, more or less. But T is my companion, and looks like it will be a part of my life for quite some time.

      What happened at church is also an important matter. It is hard not to have regrets after something like this occurs. I still wonder that myself sometimes, what if? What if I hadn't taken ototoxic pills or if I were more careful at our band practices.

      Best of luck PingoJack, and thank you for writing this!
       
      • Like Like x 1
    3. Molan
      No Mood

      Molan Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2005
      I'm a little confused by your post Pingojack? To the best of my knowledge it is not possible to give yourself hyperacusis just by thought alone? My family and friends read articles about Tinnitus when I got struck down with it but they certainly never developed it. Perhaps you had some kind of inner ear infection that went undiagnosed perhaps?
       
    4. Louise

      Louise Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Yorkshire, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      29/06/2012
      Hi PingoJack. You are the first person I've heard make their T worse with noise like I have. When you say 'jump' do you mean the noise went up a level and stayed there rather than it went up and came back down as in a 'spike'?

      I've made mine worse twice since it started (6 months ago TODAY :(). Once by going to the theatre and once in a noisy restaurant. The volume went up and has stayed there.
       
    5. PingoJack
      Spaced

      PingoJack Member

      Location:
      Gothenburg, Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2000
      Hi!

      Fish: Thanks! Your thoughts about "what if" is something I had a hard time with at the onset of my T. I was angry about the lack of information about it. I had heard about hearing loss, but never about T. I could not understand the lack of information when I realized that it is such a common problem and the hell that some people go through when they get it. Soon after my T started there WAS in fact a county campaign to inform about it. Inspectors went out checking sound levels at all the night clubs, concerts and cinemas. Thoughts about "what if" gets easier to handle by time. I try to live my life without adjusting to much, I do (or try to) bring ear-plugs everywhere I go though. I was however not expecting the church organ to play at that level. I am glad that my story was encouraging for you. I found it very helpful to read about people who has made it through and made T a friend, though sometimes a very annoying one. Much is won when the disabling anxiety is gone :)

      Molan: You are probably right and I can clearify it more. I did cut the story short, but at the onset of hyperacusis I was in a very stressful period as well when writing up my master thesis (and was in a bad relationship with no understanding about T). The fear of making my T worse I used ear-plugs more that I should have done (probably a common mistake). It made my ear very sensitive to everyday noise. Since hyperacusis have a big component of psychology, fear and stress nurtured it and made it unbearable. My ears felt like doors wide open where noise whent unhindered straight into my head like nails. It was awful, and much more disabling that T has ever been. When I realized that this disorder was connected to my feelings towards sounds I started to slowly adjust back to handle everyday noise. I also did alot of T checks along the way and found out that T did not change. This gave me comfort that sounds that I avoided was just my brain amplifying it due to my fear and it slowly became better.
       
    6. PingoJack
      Spaced

      PingoJack Member

      Location:
      Gothenburg, Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2000
      Hi Louise!

      I read somewhere at this forum (forgot where) about a jump in T and how it lowered to a higher "platform". It was a very good description about what I have just experienced. The jumps is however not very high, instead its very gradual, but to another platform of a little bit more annoying T.

      At many times, however, it has felt like it gotten worse, but it hasn't. English is not my native language but I will try to explain. My experience is that when I have come to terms with T and function normally without the anxiety, and worries, T is under control. It is, so to say, locked up way back in my consciousness and it doesn't bother me. But then comes an event, a noisy restaurant, or any other loud noise that manage to trigger that fear I had in the beginning. Suddenly it feels like my brain locks in to T and T makes a move up to the front of my consciousness, at center stage :) The immediate response is that T got louder, but in fact it hasn't, it just got a lot of my brains attention. Then comes the work of putting it back again, to the last row in the theatre. It takes time and energy but it takes less of both by time when you find coping strategies that works for you :)

      Anyway, if it is infact louder by the trauma try to rest your ears for some time because it may settle back.
       
    7. Louise

      Louise Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Yorkshire, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      29/06/2012
      Thanks for the explanation Pingo.

      My T is always centre-stage, cant get it out of my thoughts.
       

Share This Page

Loading...
If you have ringing ears then you've come to the right place. We are a friendly tinnitus support board, dedicated to helping you discuss and understand what tinnitus treatments may work for you.