My Tinnitus Symptoms & Things I've Tried

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by Ant81, Feb 25, 2016.

    1. Ant81

      Ant81 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Hey everyone,

      My tinnitus started out of the blue at the very end of September '15. It was (and remains to this day) not consistently in either ear, nor was it a consistent sound. It can spontaneously move from one side to the other, or be somewhere in the middle. The nature of the sound also changes. sometimes it's a dull rushing sound, other times it's a high-pitch squeak. sometimes it oscillates from one to the other giving me a sound similar to someone trying to tune an old radio. I also have other sensations in my head. I often feel pressure in my ears / middle of my head. Sometimes this pressure builds until it feels more like a vibration behind my face. On some occasions these feelings are enough to make the roots of my teeth tingle and pulse with enough strength to wake me up from shallow sleep (along with a reflex action as if someone had hit me in the mouth in whatever dream I was having). An interesting quirk of my internal head sensation is that it sometimes feels like someone is gently tugging away at something in there. It occasionally triggers an eyelid-close response as if I was really sleepy. I also get headaches that don't respond to painkillers. I'm more sensitive to noise too - not desperately so (I can watch Star Wars in the cinema without ear plugs or discomfort, yay!) but I don't go to gigs without earplugs, and doing washing up is sometimes uncomfortable because of the clinking plates etc. Another serious effect of all this is my concentration and ability to work. I am a self employed graphic designer, and working is often very, very difficult. I've taken many weeks off.

      Anyway, after two weeks of initial onset I'd of course begun researching possible treatments. I'd had a Doctor's appointment and started seeing a chiroplactor. Though I continued seeing the chiropractor for three further months I don't think it made a difference. My first Doctor's appointment was a misdiagnosed waste of time. The Doctor assumed I had Meniere's Disease (though I have no vertigo or hearing loss or anything), and prescribed me Serc-16. This did nothing, and possibly made me feel worse, though that might have been the stress of dealing with everything; who knows.... I later saw a different GP, who was better, but not able to offer anything useful. I had an NHS blood test, which showed nothing. Booked to see a private ENT specialist including a proper hearing test, which showed I have no hearing loss (my hearing's actually very good, apparently). after numerous other Doctor visits I eventually got through to an NHS ENT specialist who sent me for an MRI scan. I haven't heard the results of that yet, because my follow-up appointment isn't until April (!!??)...

      Throughout the months I've also tried acupuncture, osteopathy, kinesiology, massages, including a mouth-area massage, in case there was any TMJ-like cause. No real benefits from any of these aside from the fact that massages are nice (though the mouth massage was NOT pleasant) and acupuncture is actually very relaxing. On a broader note, the acupuncturist and a few other people drew attention to my diet, encouraging me to change things up a bit - hopefully for the better. I've also tried a vast array of supplements and minerals. Though of course they didn't help the tinnitus I think they did me some good generally. My immune system is generally kicking arse right now. I've been surrounded by various people with colds, and I never seem to fully catch them...

      I do have had good tinnitus days. Days where I go almost the whole day without thinking about it; where I can't really hear it unless I listen for it. I've started keeping a food diary to see if there's any correlation or pattern with my tinnitus peaks and troughs. If my every day was on the good end of the spectrum I could well live with the tinnitus. It's just the really bad times that get me down. And I am frequently very down indeed, particularly at night when I can't sleep due to the screaming and discomfort.

      One thing to have emerged from all this is that it seems stress and anxiety play a part in making things worse. I'm traditionally a very laid-back person, and not good at even noticing when I'm stressed. Now I'm more aware of that sort of thing it's come to my attention that I'm very stressed pretty much all of the time. I've started to see a hypnotherapist to try and identify and root-out historic causes of stress. I'm not good at being hypnotised because my mind doesn't easily 'let go'... But the intense relaxation brought on by the hypnotic experience is the only thing to ever actually make things feel better. For a couple of hours after my first treatments my head actually felt clear, which made me feel so great and happy! I'm also starting to worry about it less generally. I hear the sounds, but these days I can ignore it more effectively and get on with life more times than not. This is something the hypnotherapist is trying to build upon, so I'll see how much I can amplify my brain's ability to ignore what is a chronically irritating life companion.

      Fatigue and tiredness also make it worse, so I'm trying very hard to keep a regular sleep pattern.

      The above text went on longer than expected, sorry! I'd love to hear anyone's thoughts on things I could also try, or if anyone has had similar experiences with their symptoms...?

    2. Clare B

      Clare B Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Hey Ant,

      I've noticed the same thing with the clanking plates, it can really hurt your ears sometimes too. Good excuse to get out of doing the dishes though! : )

      I find it hard to concentrate when working too sometimes, especially when the tinnitus is louder. I work from home, I'm also a self-employed designer/artist. It's a real pain sometimes, really, really distracting, annoying and frustrating. I try and just mask it with the radio now, which works most of the time but I don't always want to listen to the radio.

      I know how you feel about the sleep too, I used to sleep like a log but I can't remember the last time I had a peaceful night sleep! I usually wake at 4 or 5 am now and find it hard to get back to sleep because of the noise.

      You've tried a LOT of different treatments. I was given Serc early on by the doctor but I didn't take it, I'm not a big fan of drugs. I'm also going to explore the area of diet, especially sugar intake.

      I have good days too, when I forget about it and I can get on with things. The bad days are pretty crap though, it does get me down too sometimes but I try not to focus on it and just keep myself busy. Yep, stress and anxiety definitely makes it worse alright. Do you do much exercise or get out in nature much? I find it improves with exercise and if I'm outside in the garden I totally forget about it because of all the noises like the birds, wind etc.

      Thanks for sharing your experiences and what you've tried so far, it really helps others. I never thought of hypnotherapy, will look into it.

      Hope you have some good tinnitus days soon.


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