"Reactive" Tinnitus — Ringing/Beeping in Response to External Sounds

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by Aloe_Blossum, Apr 1, 2020.

    1. Aloe_Blossum
      Bookworm

      Aloe_Blossum Member

      Location:
      Seattle
      Tinnitus Since:
      March 2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Hi everyone. I've been reading this forum for a month or so now. Trying to figure out what category I best fit into so I can get the right treatment underway. I would appreciate any advice you might have regarding my specific case. Here are the notable details:

      In quiet places (like the bathroom for instance) I can not hear tinnitus, and if I look really hard for it maybe it is there a little bit.

      When the furnace comes on, my tinnitus is a constant high pitched "eeeeeeeeeee". It's almost painful the pitch is so high, it's like a needle vibrating on glass kind of feeling. When the furnace stops the "eeeee" also stops or becomes very quiet. White noise has the same effect.

      When I am in an environment with variations in sound (tv), it's more like a "beep beep beep" that is always louder/more noticeable than the external sound, as though it is competing with/reacting to the sound.

      When I use headphones I get pain in my ear and a spike in the volume of the tinnitus for a period of time afterwards (so, never again).

      When I wake up in the morning I hear basically silence. Sometimes I forget to be worried about it for a few minutes. It comes on gradually.

      Magnesium and Melatonin seem to help. Melatonin makes me drowsy in the daytime so I can't take much.

      The sound is unilateral (right ear) though I will get pain in the left ear too, just no sound yet (fingers crossed)

      There was no inciting event in terms of a loud sound, a head injury, etc. At the time I was actually doing really well with diet, too (I have to for gastritis). As in no junk food, just vegetables and chicken.

      I am on a double dose of a proton pump inhibitor now for 6 months, which is what caused me to suspect magnesium issue. I am also slightly low on iron which I can't treat because of gastritis (for now).

      I find I'm slightly more annoyed by my husbands coughing or the sound of dishes, but not much. I notice I'm being more careful not to bang the dishes. I had one day when I felt highly irritated to sounds, but if anything this is mild day by day. That said, we've been on Corona quarantine and we keep our house pretty quiet as is as my husband works from home.

      Sometimes it seems to pulse with my heart rate, or at least follow some kind of rhythm. Sometimes "crickets" would describe the experience.

      Masking doesn't work, the tinnitus competes with sound (silence is generally best). The only exception is the shower. It's completely masked by the shower even when it's bad. And once, it was gone for 6 hours after a shower. I had another silent 5 hours last week after commencing mag and melatonin.

      Delayed my ENT and hearing test for another month because of corona. Family doctor said Eustacian Tubes but steriod did nothing. The fullness/pain seems to be an effect of the noise/sound, not the other way around.

      I experienced tinnitus once before for 24 hours after a night of drinking when I had wax build up. Unremarkable, went away after wax removal.

      This came on gradually but became very noticeable and upsetting within a week. Probably because I am an anxious person so I started to obsess and worry. I feel less offended by it after a few weeks have passed.

      Summary: Mild Hyperacusis, silence better than sound, young female with history of anxiety/depression, possible very mild hearing loss (have been to a decent number of concerts, but nothing for the past few years). I've had 5 years of significant TMJ, I treat with massage therapy.

      Here are my going theories:

      1. Magnesium insufficiency from proton pump inhibitors causing muscle and circulatory compromise, TMJ messing with ear muscles to make the tone of the reactive ear muscle hypertonic.

      2. Chronic anxiety caught up to me and my brain just wants to hear everything now because I've been in a ramped up state for too long now (central gain theory). Had a major grief event within the last year.

      3. Side effect of Mirena IUD (Inserted January)

      Precipitating events: Two weeks prior quit caffeine/all stimulants to treat gastritis. Concomitantly quit melatonin as without coffee in the morning the melatonin made me drowsy. Was walking a lot listening to podcasts and eating well. Was generally on an upswing in terms of mood and health. Never more than 90 min with earphones and never at a high volume. Had Mirena IUD in beginning of January, had a big effect on my mood, makes me depressed and cry at the drop of a hat.

      Plan: Try to ignore it and don't avoid sound but don't use ear phones and generally do everything I can to relax neck and jaw muscles and calm mind and avoid inflammation. Explore pink noise. See doctor. If Mirena related hormone transition doesn't sort out then remove the Mirena and get iron infusion to deal with monthly hemorrhage issue. Consider botox to TMJ when quarantine is out.

      Am I on the right track?

      I just want to say, as depressing as this site is, I appreciate the thoughtfulness of the posts here. I don't know what I'd do without this kind of resource, so thank you!
       
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    2. Emgee

      Emgee Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma + Viral Infection
      Good Morning,

      It seems like you are having a similar experience to myself. About two months ago, I developed ear fullness in my left ear. I was exposed to loud music days prior to that, so I thought that was probably the case. My TMJ was always very bad that week from excessive gum chewing. It didn’t help that I was just getting over a serious head cold also. I thought maybe that could have played a role.

      Regardless, the fullness stayed in my left ear for about a week and a half, switched to my right ear for a few days, and then went back to my left for a few more days. It is completely gone; however, now I hear a hissing/static sound in my right ear whenever there is external sound. I do not have tinnitus in quiet rooms - only with sound. Perhaps it’s anxiety-related? I’m hoping that this will improve in time for both of us. Please keep me posted on your progress. Very interesting.

      Mike
       
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    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Aloe_Blossum
      Bookworm

      Aloe_Blossum Member

      Location:
      Seattle
      Tinnitus Since:
      March 2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Hi Michael! Nice to meet you :) Yes please keep me posted as well. We definitely don’t have typical presentation of the condition.
       
    4. leftearguy

      leftearguy Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/10/20
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Weed, Hidden Hearing Loss
      I'd really like an answer to this as I'm experience almost the same thing. I can barely hear my tinnitus when it's silent. But when there's a fan of something similar going, there's a high pitched whistle over top of it. It's weird because even when I can't hear it it it seems like I can always feel it. Like there's something going off in my brain that I can't stop and I can't ignore. I don't know if this is all from hidden hearing loss or what. I got it after smoking some very potent marijuana.
      I have had visual snow and DPDR for several months before this. I hope the tinnitus is simply related to something like that and not actual hearing loss. But I'm not sure if it will ever go away.
       

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