New on Here. Looking for Support, Advice.

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by Chris4817, Sep 23, 2019.

    1. Chris4817

      Chris4817 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      8/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Hi! My name is Chris, 37 years old and I've developed tinnitus around August 1st. Not sure what caused the ringing. It first started in my left ear. I know it wasn't noise induced. Got it checked out three days later by urgent care who said it could have been allergy related. Got oral steroids and Sudafed. Nothing changed. Started panicking and stressing out. Went to the GP who ordered a CT and MRI which came out ok. Went to the ENT, he did a hearing test and said my hearing was good, a very slight loss in my left ear. The doctor told me that I have mild tinnitus possibly either from medications or that it's stress induced. He said it could go away in a few months. Not many answers. Very depressed and worried. Later the ringing in my left ear kinda subsided to a hiss which I can hear in quiet environments, however my right ear started doing a tv type eeeeee sound which that too is mild but it does get a bit amplified with other sounds that I hear (hyperacusis maybe?)

      So anyways the tinnitus is mild and not loud. The eeeeee sound sometimes can be soft or all over the place like eeeerrewerrre. Thankfully I can sleep at night because the ringing is not loud in quiet rooms. Currently taking antidepressants Zoloft, Trazodone and Ativan for short term anti-anxiety (which this has caused a lot of). Currently taking supplements B12, Magnesium, Ginkgo Biloba to help. Still very depressed, I do cry and I am worried about my overall health which is deteriorating. My mental health has also taken a turn for the worst.

      So I'm open to any suggestions and answers to my tinnitus. Do I have a good chance that this could go away in a few months? What could I do to help my well-being in the meantime?
       
    2. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      @Chris4817
      I am curious as to why you believe your tinnitus isn't noise induced? Of course you can be correct, however something usually causes tinnitus and the most common is exposure to loud noise. If you are not a regular user of headphones, don't go to places where there is loud music such as: clubs or concerts. Don't work in a noisy environment then the tinnitus is probably not noise induced.

      Please click on the link below and read my post: Tinnitus, A Personal View, as you might find it helpful.

      All the best
      Michael

      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/tinnitus-a-personal-view.18668/
       
      • Like Like x 1
    3. Digital Doc

      Digital Doc Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise induced
      Certainly a chance that the tinnitus can go away. The unknown cause cases can be the most frustrating.

      Still, as stated above, noise induced is the most common, so be sure to protect from additional noise exposure. Not sure how you can be sure that it is not noise induced as we all get so exposed to noise constantly even if we are not looking for it. Also, the tinnitus spikes can be delayed for weeks so the sound exposure can be more remote that people generally realize.
       
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    4. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Chris4817

      Chris4817 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      8/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Well I do work at a somewhat noisy store that tends to get busy a lot. I do listen to music but not loud. Headphones too but not too loud. The last place I remember was really noisy was at the local racetrack back in June. My ears were fine afterwards. Definitely for now I'm using earplugs and muffs in noisy environments so I can let my ears heal.
       
    5. beach house

      beach house Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      dunno yet
      wow... you have a similar experience to mine. did you see a neurologist? get your back and neck checked to cross it off the list.

      what helps me to keep my mind off of tinnitus is work, reading about possible treatments (but not getting hope too high), maybe video games, and talking to others (the last one is important). don't overexpose yourself to loud noises i'd say, even if it's not noise induced. the less you think about the sound, the better. the goal is not to cause more stress, even though it's hard and downright impossible at the beginning.

      i myself am leaning towards meditation/mindfulness to help with mental stability, although it takes a lot of willingness and energy. expanding the (world)view and knowledge has been really helpful thus far (primarily i watched a lot of "thinking allowed with jeffrey mishlove" videos; but it's best if you find your own thing; just try not to spend that much time with tinnitus).

      take care,
      bh
       
      • Like Like x 2
    6. Digital Doc

      Digital Doc Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise induced
      @Chris4817

      Your T sounds to me that it certainly could be noise induced. Start with tossing out the headphones as that is a common trigger. That 60% volume for 60 minutes a day is a pile of baloney, and definitely not safe for many. The loud store that you work at can be an issue as well. You may need a quieter job, or at least to wear some earplugs when you are there. Sounds akin to working at a restaurant. Did you try measuring the loudness with an app on your phone?

      https://www.noisyplanet.nidcd.nih.gov/have-you-heard/noise-levels-restaurants
       
    7. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Chris4817

      Chris4817 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      8/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Im going to be seeing a neurologist in November, hopefully there can be more answers then. Good point about the back and neck to get it checked out. Im keeping busy with work, however that causes my anxiety to rise because its so busy. Im looking into possibly taking time off so i can improve my overall health. Definitely video games and i do go on walks. I am talking to others friends, family which has a huge help already. Everyone is saying that i can get through this and things will be ok. This is just take time..alot of it
       
    8. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      My guess is that it's headphones that has caused the tinnitus. These are the most common cause of Noise induced tinnitus. You might not think that you've been listening at too high a volume but you'd be very surprised indeed. Using earmuffs and earplugs in the manner that you are doing, is likely to make your brain focus more on the tinnitus, which can make it more intrusive. In addition to this you risk lowering the hearing threshold of your auditory system, which will make your hearing more sensitive to sound. In short, what you are doing is not a good idea! However, the choice is yours.

      I suggest that you stop using headphones for at least 3 months preferably never use them again. They are the most dangerous devices on the planet for causing tinnitus and would be banned if I had my way. Trust me, it is headphones that has caused the tinnitus and if you want to give yourself the best chance of recovery then don't use them.

      Take care and I wish you well.
      Michael
       
      • Like Like x 1
    9. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Chris4817

      Chris4817 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      8/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Yes, definitely dont plan on using headphones in the immediate future. For sure want my hears to heal. As for the earplugs/ muffs i generally will wear them if i know going to be in a noisy environment.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    10. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      That is okay but be careful of overusing earplugs as you can easily make the tinnitus worse. Please click on the link below and read my post: Hyperacusis, As I see it. It can take 6, 12 to 18months to make a recovery in some cases longer. Keep away from clubs and concerts and try not to be tempted to use headphones even at low volume. By all means go out and have a nice time but don't immerse yourself in noisy environments.

      Michael

      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/hyperacusis-as-i-see-it.19174/

      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/the-habituation-process.20767/
       
    11. beach house

      beach house Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      dunno yet
      good call, especially if the work is stressful. any other activity is good as well in the absence of work.

      as an ex heavy over-ear headphones user, i'll join @Digital Doc - ditch it for now, even if you listen on low volume. i still use pc speakers, though.

      getting enough sleep is also crucial.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    12. JudyM
      Frustrated

      JudyM Member

      Location:
      Maryland
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      unknown
      This is so confusing to me. This week I went to a reputable John's Hopkins Clinic in the US. I was seen in their ENT clinic by an otolarynologist. I took with me my audiogram from another local ENT's office. I also had a disc of my brain MRI and a CT of temporal lobes. The doctor did look at the MRI and said well there are no tumors that's good. He looked at the audiogram and said you are hearing quite well... some hearing loss at high decibels. He said this is why my tinnitus is a high pitched sound. His advice to all his patients is sound therapy. He said to listen to music through headphones at a volume lower than my tinnitus daily, for at least a half hour or as long as I want. He said this would train my brain to push the tinnitus sound lower as my brain strains to listen to the music. He said to use a sound machine at night. He said he too had tinnitus and had it for 10 years. I asked do you have hyperacusis as I believe I have and he said fortunately no but he believes his treatment should work over time. I left that clinic feeling very disheartened. Now I am also very confused about headphone use.
       
    13. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      HI @JudyM

      I understand how you feel for it can be confusing when a medical physician such as your doctor that has probably worked in ENT for number years tells you to use sound therapy by listening to music through headphones at low volume, as it will help your brain to focus less on the tinnitus and push it further into the background over time.
      Therefore, who am to say one shouldn't listen to music through headphones at low volume as it could make the tinnitus worse?

      Your ENT doctor is right, sound therapy can help the brain to focus less on the tinnitus but it is more complex then what he believes I assure you. He maybe an excellent physician and knows all about the anatomy of the: Ear, Nose and Throat, and be able to treat these organs medically or surgically. Any underlying medical problem associated with them causing tinnitus, I am confident he will be able to offer some form of treatment, as this is his area of expertise. However, I am here to tell you a tinnitus expert he is not even though he has tinnitus. Neither am I implying that I am an expert in tinnitus but do have a lot of experience with it. In addition to this I have counselled and corresponded with people over a number of years with "Noise induced Tinnitus.

      The advice that I give in this forum is for people with "Noise induced tinnitus" having had the condition for 23 years. If your tinnitus wasn't noise induced, then using headphones in the manner your ENT doctor suggested might be okay but I still advise you to be cautious.

      Michael

      PS: The proper way to use sound therapy is by using white noise generators which look like hearing aids and fit over the ears. They emit white noise which should be set at a level slightly below the tinnitus. This form of sound therapy one should be under the care of a Hearing Therapist or Audiologist, trained in tinnitus and hyperacusis management.

      A sound machine can also be used for sound therapy. Placed by the bedside the volume should be set slightly below the tinnitus and played throughout the night until morning. During the day one can use any form of sound therapy. Again, the volume should be kept at a low to moderate level so it is not masking or covering up the tinnitus so it can't be heard. The brain cannot habituate to tinnitus unless it can hear it. For this reason sound therapy should not mask tinnitus.
       
    14. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Chris4817

      Chris4817 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      8/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      So it is true with any kind of tinnitus, it gets easier and better over time?
       
    15. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      Tinnitus does usually improve over time but this condition is much more complicated than that. A lot depends on the person's make up, what is going on in their life and the severity of the tinnitus. Tinnitus comes in many forms and intensities and no two people experience it the same. If hyperacusis is present it complicates matters further.

      Whilst tinnitus is a very common condition that many people habituate to in time and go on to lead a fulfilling life doing everything that they want to within reason. There is a dark and very sinister side to it that a lot of people don't know about. Some that do, try to dismiss it or push it to one side and not address the issue. Be under no illusion, tinnitus can be ruthless and very unforgiving to anyone that doesn't take it seriously especially "noise induced" tinnitus. It can reach a level of severity that can be your worst nightmare. The only difference being, you will be wide awake and living through it and not fast asleep.

      Michael
       

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