Noise-Induced Tinnitus Was Actually Stress-Induced Tinnitus — Fluoxetine Made It Vanish

Discussion in 'Success Stories' started by Aubeebee, Sep 15, 2022.

    1. Aubeebee

      Aubeebee Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Concerts and stress

      If you have been struggling with random tinnitus onset and are not sure where it came from, I'd love to tell you my story. If you have tinnitus due to some other condition that has been given to you by a doctor, I'm so sorry that you have to suffer that way. It's truly not an enjoyable experience and I don't wish it on anyone.

      I'm a musician and a DJ and am usually pretty good about wearing earplugs, but lately, I've been off my game. I went to a loud rock show and played a gig in a pretty short succession of one another. The tinnitus was not there right after the gig, and then WHAM. Two days later I got whacked with the loudest tinnitus I'd ever experienced. It was persistent for over a month and I was beginning to feel hopeless.

      I tried acupuncture and Chinese herb supplements, craniosacral therapy, etc. while waiting for an ENT appointment. It temporarily reduced the symptoms of tinnitus but it always came rushing back. It was also weird because the tinnitus was bouncing from ear to ear, sometimes on the left and sometimes on the right, sometimes in both. I would plug my ears to see where it was coming from (don't do this by the way).

      I finally got in to see my ENT and he took a look around. Nothing wrong with my ears, hearing, throat, or nose. Then what could it be? Surely I had screwed up my hearing otherwise why was I hearing noises in my head. On this note, IF your tinnitus is bouncing around from side to side, ear to ear, or both -- this is a good sign! It means it's probably not due to hearing loss and more of a brain thing.

      Then he asked me about stress and I started to recount the many emotional stressors that have been weighing heavily on me. (In this day and age, it's hard not to be stressed). He said that sometimes even a loud concert that causes tinnitus from temporary hearing damage can be accelerated and perpetuated by stress especially when there's no hearing loss. Your brain then prioritizes the sound as important and something to watch out for and thus continues the vicious cycle. You know how people all of sudden have crazy back pain after not getting injured or migraines with no ailment (which I also head)? Well, your ears can also do that too!

      I felt immediately better. There wasn't actually anything wrong with me. My symptoms have subsided, and the first step to them subsiding more substantially was just getting checked out by an ENT. I've since seen a psychiatrist who prescribed Fluoxetine and it made the tinnitus vanish. I'm still going to go get my eyes checked too as that might be causing extra tension that can cause tiny flare-ups here and there.

      All this to say, PLEASE don't stress out about this too much until you've seen the ENT. If you don't have insurance, I would look up doctors on ZocDoc and see what doctors in your area offer good prices for a basic evaluation. Do this for peace of mind more than anything, especially if you're young and living with this condition. I promise it's worth it. There are also ways to get pharmaceutical generic drugs for pretty cheaply online through BetterHelp and stuff like that too.

      I always recommend going to therapy in addition to taking meds to identify your stressors, but you could also pick up some books on mental health that might help. I like "The Body Keeps The Score" (CW: Lots of trauma but really fascinating to read and see how past traumas can affect the body).

      If you are new here, please don't read the bad stories first. It will make the tinnitus worse. I know it's hard because you're looking for answers, but truly do what you can to destress and tell yourself that you are safe and it'll be ok.

      I am never taking my hearing for granted again and will be earplugging up at all my gigs. Musicians and DJs get yourself some custom molded earplugs with a flat sonic spectrum if possible. If you're an avid concert-goer, you can buy high-fidelity earplugs on amazon for about $20 that go on your keychain (so worth it).

      If this story doesn't apply to you, I'm sorry. I can't imagine what you're going through right now, but I thought that I should post some goodness on this forum because it scared the sh!t out of me when I first got on. Hoping that this might provide some hope for those new to the tinnitus diagnosis.
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    2. Johan82

      Johan82 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Infection or noise
      Thanks for your story.

      It seems that stress can impact each person differently. I experience the same right now. I guess it could be the anxiety, insomnia etc. what makes my brain overactive.

      I am not sure if stress and anxiety can damage something in the ear, nerves or brain? Especially when you have been dealing with it for over 5 months.

      What do you think?

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