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Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by dmhead, Oct 18, 2013.

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    1. dmhead
      Cheerful

      dmhead Member

      Location:
      NY
      Tinnitus Since:
      9/25/13
      I guess all the years of playing music has caught up with me. It's a shame too, because I was pretty responsible when it came to rehearsing and playing live -- I consistently used -20db earplugs. I gather it just took a few times without them to cause my tinnitus in my right ear. Right now, I guess I am in the stage of "My life is over", and I have sunk to the depths of despair many times.

      While music isn't the way I make my living. It is my life. It is my joy. It is what gives me purpose. To stop playing it would be to stop living. It's what reduces the stress in my life, so it has to be a good thing. I cannot let this T defeat me.

      I need support though. I hate to admit it, but I need it. When I think about it rationally, my T is very mild 80-90% of the time. Unfortunately, I'm an emotional person (probably why I am an artist).

      The timing of this couldn't be worse lol, I leave for a European tour in 15 days!

      I just don't know what to do.
       
    2. gary
      Transparent

      gary Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Macomb, MI. USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Who Knows
      Hi, T has no preference, it strikes all ages, race, sex. You are very lucky you have low T 80-90% of the time.

      We all hit that my life is over feeling. You gotta pick yourself up and make that European tour, or are you going to will let T beat you? You do know you will regret not making that tour. If it hard on you, then it's hard on you. you will gain strength as you do more....
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    3. gary
      Transparent

      gary Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Macomb, MI. USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Who Knows
      I just saw you have only had T for a month or so. I may only be temporary. Get to an ENT if can before the tour.
      start reading others stories. Remember dmhead you are not alone, we welcome you with open arms....
       
    4. Steve H
      Creative

      Steve H Director Staff Benefactor Team Trobalt Team Tech Team Awareness Team Research

      Location:
      York, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      2003
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Flu, Noise-induced, Jaw trauma
      Hi and welcome,

      Music is a huge part of my life too, and I felt the same way that you do now when I got T. Wondering if that's it, will I ever be able to enjoy music again, play again, listen the same way.

      Well, some things change, but you don't have to stop what you love. You might go acoustic instead of electric, from house to down tempo, rockin to chilled. Whatever you love there's always an option, you just have to find your niche.

      I've done it so I can tell you from experience that it's not hugely difficult. It might be frustrating to feel that you have to change rather than have a choice, but we are adaptable creatures so you'll find your enjoyment again soon enough.

      The trip will be fine; there should be no effects from flying and getting away to a different environment can be fantastic for distracting you. Exploring new things diverts your attention and helps with habituation. And of course if it's temporary your trip could be just the thing to help forget about it as it fades away into the background.
       
    5. dmhead
      Cheerful

      dmhead Member

      Location:
      NY
      Tinnitus Since:
      9/25/13
      Thanks everyone. I know it could only be temporary, and the ENT had given me some hope she told me it wasn't T and not to worry. But that hope is fading away. It's been about 12 weeks now. At first it was diagnosed as my TMJ area being swollen and inflamed (which it most certainly was). That pain and swelling is gone and the T is still there.

      Anyway, over the 10 weeks I've been dealing with this, it has gotten better. Perhaps I am habituating to it. Don't know, don't care. I've just about reclaimed sleep thank god. It pisses me off that when I had my hearing test, they were surprised at how good my hearing was. Audiologist said my hearing was that of someone 5-10 years younger.

      Gary: Thanks. I will not give up the tour opportunity of a lifetime. No way No how. Thanks for the encouragement. My band mates are very supportive, and are willing to accommodate me as much as possible. I am pumped to go! And yes, I am sure the constant action, being in a bus (and listening to the sweet sound of the wheels rolling on the pavement) will all be good for me.

      Steve: Changing the type of music I play is difficult. I currently play deathmetal, which is loud, aggressive and heavy. I have changed some habits though, like when I write, I write on an acoustic first, then translate it to electric (at a low volume of course). The only time it's loud is at practice and live. I have musician's earplugs and they work great.

      Thanks guys. I enjoy talking to you.
       
    6. Steve H
      Creative

      Steve H Director Staff Benefactor Team Trobalt Team Tech Team Awareness Team Research

      Location:
      York, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      2003
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Flu, Noise-induced, Jaw trauma
      Ha ha, yes it is difficult to tone down deathmetal (I used to be into it myself, partly grew away from it and partly struggle because the frequency content is harsher on my ears). In fact, you have one of the only musical styles that doesn't work being more chilled.

      But if you can manage it, with earplugs and writing quieter, that's the best thing to do. You shouldn't let T stop you from doing things, only if you can feel something making you worse will you need to change.

      It could easily be down to the TMJ, give it a little more time and there's a good chance it will fade. You need to try not to focus on it, that'll give you the best chance of it disappearing. As long as you can protect yourself from dangerous noise levels on the tour that should stop it from flaring up any, and hopefully you'll get back and all of a sudden realise it just isn't there any more.
       
    7. dmhead
      Cheerful

      dmhead Member

      Location:
      NY
      Tinnitus Since:
      9/25/13
      Steve. thanks. I always wear earplugs. It's my rule number one. Always has been. I'm hoping it's still a tmj thing, but it's difficult for me to 'just not think about it'. Funny thing is loud noises (ie lawnmower, leaf blower, etc.) do not bother me at all when I am done. The T almost never attacks then. I always feel great after mowing the lawn. A few weeks ago I was wearing outdoor earmuff/noise reducers and that was painful to my ears. Constant high-pitched whine in my right earmuff.

      Sorry, I am all over the place here. And I am verbal.

      I get radiating pains down the right jaw, my right jaw jaw feels stiff, my right ear feels clogged almost all the time. It's just been such a loooong time with this that it is certainly preying on my mind. I have to spend most of my time outdoors, because I don't notice it outside. I try using a noise machine inside, but no matter the setting, it seems the pitch in my ear gets higher and rises above the white noise. That's what is really killing me.
       
    8. JTP
      No Mood

      JTP Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Finland
      Tinnitus Since:
      5/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Shit happens
      Hello,

      If white noise irritates your ear or does not mask well, try to listen nature sounds of crickets, rain, running water etc. Have a nice tour, and keep stage volume as low as you can.
       
    9. dmhead
      Cheerful

      dmhead Member

      Location:
      NY
      Tinnitus Since:
      9/25/13
      I went through all the settings on my noise machine, and it seems like every noise, just raises the pitch of the noise I'm hearing even higher. Very frustrating. I am going to try some good fusion jazz, where there is a broader dynamic range and hopefully that will break things up. If I can get some good uninterrupted sleep, I'll be golden.

      Stage volume is actually never very loud because its so dispersed. It's much louder in front of the stage, and the earplugs work real well. The combination of the music and the noise reduction from the earplugs do a great job of masking.

      Loud noise does not at all bother my ears. I actually do better when I am out mowing the long and using the leaf blower or vacuuming out my car. It actually completely suppresses the T for 3-4 hours and I feel normal emotionally. Does that make sense?
       
    10. Steve H
      Creative

      Steve H Director Staff Benefactor Team Trobalt Team Tech Team Awareness Team Research

      Location:
      York, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      2003
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Flu, Noise-induced, Jaw trauma
      That totally makes sense. The best thing you can do is keep busy to stop focussing on it. I know how hard it is not to listen as I have the same issue, and mine also likes to rise above a lot of noises. Maybe it's a musician thing.

      You need to find the frequencies that work for you to mask it for sleep. If you can find some music that works then that's ideal, I've never been too happy with a monotonous noise like white / pink etc. I prefer more dynamic sounds like a shower (love showers as they totally mask mine) or rain, or trickling water. More interest to distract you from the T.

      The thing with a noise machine for me is the comparatively low quality of the speakers, if you've got a decent hifi you'll get a full representation of the sound rather than a weak sound that doesn't disperse very well. It can sound too fake and uninteresting.

      It does sound a lot like your TMJ is the culprit here, are you treating it or following advice from the ENT?
       
    11. JTP
      No Mood

      JTP Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Finland
      Tinnitus Since:
      5/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Shit happens
      Could it be you get prolonged residual inhibition from noise ? RI means suppression of tinnitus after listening to external sound, it usually lasts few seconds or minutes from the top of my head. My T also likes to rise above recorded masking sounds, a water tap masks it, but recorded tap does not. Dunno, maybe you should mow the lawn right before bedtime? ;)
       
    12. dmhead
      Cheerful

      dmhead Member

      Location:
      NY
      Tinnitus Since:
      9/25/13
      Steve. I still have hope that it's the tmj.

      I mean, when I rub the right side of my jaw, it hurts for a while (not as bad as it did), I get a shooting little headache on my right side for a minute or two. My right ear feels clogged a lot of the time and I can hear my Eustachian tube crackling like popcorn when I yawn or open my mouth.

      I guess I am just so scared that it's not TMJ because the pain from the first examination has reduced greatly, and I don't know logically if the T has gradually subsided--I think it has. Seems to me when it first happened when waking up from a nap it was horrible. Then after the ENT diagnosed me with TMJ stuff and I started following her plan (2 weeks ago), the jaw pain has improved greatly, the T has reduced, but has now hit a plateau. Maxillofacial surgeon does say the muscle is still a bit sore.

      I called her last week in a panic because I went for a nap and both ears were ringing like mad when I got up. She told me not to worry sleeping laying down puts pressure on the jaw and I may be clenching at night.

      The Audiologist I met with after doing the hearing test, said "everything tested out great you have excellent hearing, you have tinnitus, here take this brochure for this hearing aid (widex zen)." Then when I went upstairs to the ENT she did that examination and when I told her what the Audiologist said, she basically said "poppycock" it's your muscle around your jaw (and it hurt like f%ck when she pushed on it).

      Just so confused. Don't know who/what to believe.
       
    13. dmhead
      Cheerful

      dmhead Member

      Location:
      NY
      Tinnitus Since:
      9/25/13
      JTP: I don't know. If it's RI.
       
    14. gary
      Transparent

      gary Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Macomb, MI. USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Who Knows
      Hi dm, what did the ENT tell you the next step was?
       
    15. dmhead
      Cheerful

      dmhead Member

      Location:
      NY
      Tinnitus Since:
      9/25/13
      Gary:

      She told me Hot compresses 3-4x a day, Aleve morning and night. She said if it didn't clear up in a week go to a maxillofacial (spelling sorry) surgeon. Went to him, x-ray was fine. Jaw was good structurally. He hit many trigger points on my masseter muscle, all clear, until he went into the back of my mouth and hit a trigger point --ouch. I asked him if his fingernails were sharp and he said no. I had him hit the same trigger point on the left side of my jaw so I could compare, and the right side definitely hurt. He said it is entirely possible that this is causing the ringing. Even the slightest bit of swelling can cause it because of the proximity to the ear.

      I am hoping and praying every night that that's what it is, but my mind plays tricks on me. I don't know if the constant clogged ear, occasional shooting pain, and headaches on that side are real, or just some sort of comforting mechanism that my brain is doing to me.

      As I type now, I just finished heating pad. Jaw seemed sore from the pressure I had on it for 15 mins and the T increased for a bit. I did a reference on the left side and heated that and jaw recovered. Not sore.
       
    16. dmhead
      Cheerful

      dmhead Member

      Location:
      NY
      Tinnitus Since:
      9/25/13
      Oh, it's totally a musician thing. Hearing Nuance is in our nature!
       
    17. gary
      Transparent

      gary Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Macomb, MI. USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Who Knows
      Man, it sure sounds like TMJ, if it is, consider yourself lucky, there are, as you know, treatments for it. Assuming it is not IR.

      Have you google TMJ to look for TMJ groups. Might be worth reading.
       
    18. dmhead
      Cheerful

      dmhead Member

      Location:
      NY
      Tinnitus Since:
      9/25/13
      Yes, I've been through TMJ boards and ringing/buzzing ears is definitely a symptom. However most of the TMJ boards deal with structural issues. Mine, according to my ENT and MF dentist, is a muscle thing. He is trying to get me a night brace because he suspects I am clenching at night (not grinding). I bought an over-the-counter nightguard. I am going to try it tonight and see if it helps.
       
    19. gary
      Transparent

      gary Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Macomb, MI. USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Who Knows
      Ok, you seem to have a pretty good grip on what you need to do. Does that nightgaurd go on the upper or lower jaw.
      what is the brand name of it?
       
    20. dmhead
      Cheerful

      dmhead Member

      Location:
      NY
      Tinnitus Since:
      9/25/13
      Night guard goes on upper jaw. It's called "Dr's Nightguard". Dentist said it was safe for short periods of time until I get a truly custom molded one--I fitted it this afternoon. Gonna try it tonight. You need to follow fitting instructions carefully. I'm hoping that's the problem. I've had such a good day today from one in the afternoon till even now while I am sitting alone in my kitchen there is almost no sign of the T and I try to concentrate on it. I am afraid to go out tonight though -- but I will dammit -- it's my vocalist's wedding. And I am afraid to go to bed as well because I have been having such a good day and don't want it to end. I feel human for the first time in weeks. I have to get over this fear and face it head on but it's hard. It's knocking the crap out of me. I will make sure to step out and take breaks and I am bringing my plugs.
       
      • Informative Informative x 1
    21. Hopeful
      Wishful

      Hopeful Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/13
      Dear dmhead,

      Sorry to hear about your tinnitus. Hopefully it is TMJ and can be corrected. To this, I am a bit curious - how does your tinnitus sound?
       
    22. dmhead
      Cheerful

      dmhead Member

      Location:
      NY
      Tinnitus Since:
      9/25/13
      Wishful. It's a high pitched whine.
       
    23. Hopeful
      Wishful

      Hopeful Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/13
      constant? always sounding the same?
       
    24. dmhead
      Cheerful

      dmhead Member

      Location:
      NY
      Tinnitus Since:
      9/25/13
      Well, there is a low underdone, but that doesn't bother me at all. It's the constant high-pitched tone that sucks. It;s been going on all day today. Yesterday it was gone and there was only the low tone, which I can barely hear and doesn't interfere with daily life at all.
       
    25. gary
      Transparent

      gary Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Macomb, MI. USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Who Knows
      You are lucky, there are some here who do not have any good days, enjoy them when you get them, and when the noise comes back, remember the good day/days you had and remember the good days will come back..
       
    26. dmhead
      Cheerful

      dmhead Member

      Location:
      NY
      Tinnitus Since:
      9/25/13
      Thanks Gary. That sure helps!
       

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