Some Recent Revelations About Tinnitus and Coping

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by live ringer, Jun 5, 2016.

    1. live ringer

      live ringer Member

      Eugene, Oregon
      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      noise exposure, possible reaction to antibiotics, stress
      Hello, I am a tinnitus sufferer and have been living with it intermittently since 2006 and permanently since 2009. I recently had another exposure to loud noise, which nearly caused me to relapse out of my habituation. This recent experience has led me to understand some things that may help others a great deal.

      The first time I had it, was in the wake of some very stressful life circumstances and two bouts of antibiotics that targeted congestion in my ears. I am not sure if both or only one of the two was to blame, but the reaction was so severe that I did not sleep at all for two weeks straight, developed acid reflux, and had a series of symptoms, which seemed absolutely real, but were the same kind of brain generated sensation T is only applied more broadly to other senses. I was convinced for example that acid was in my sinuses and running down my throat constantly. I lost over 25 pounds in three weeks. The thing that turned me around the first time was Klonopin. It let me sleep, and my nervous system recovered, including the ringing.

      I got it again about 2 years later in the wake of exposure to loud noise, I had left over klonopin, so I took it as soon as possible, but a bigger dose, because it did not react as efficiently, probably because there had been noise exposure, and my system was used to it. This is the big danger with benzos. It took me 9 months to whittle away at the klonopin dependence and about three to lose the ringing or habituate to it to where it was almost inaudible.

      The third time stuck. I was video taping a friend's concert, but I had state issued ear plugs and the anti-jet engine ear muff things on top of that. It didn't matter. I had a radical reaction to it. Instantaneous dizziness, distorted vision, inability to hold my eye steadily on a fixed object without it moving, a feeling of walking on a moving boat. By this time the klonopin was really not effective and it took maybe nearly two years to get to a habituation state.

      With this last exposure I payed special attention to the secondary symptoms, especially the burning sensation in my face scalp and sinuses. I realized that it was the early signal of a downward spiral or spike. I found my masking sound right away to stave it off, but I also noticed that the perception of the sound made all the difference. When I perceived the sound as squelchy, drill like or grinding, instantaneously, the burning would start. I even had swollen tissue as if exposed to stomach acid, but the truth is that there was no acidic substance in my system, my brain was doing it all.

      I think that it is crucial to realize this about T to make progress. If you can find a symptom that radically changes under certain conditions, try to figure out a way to minimize them, then you can start convincing your brain, the subconscious part, that it is sabotaging itself. You will habituate and maybe even loose some or all of the ringing much more quickly.

      Also, your brain associates things as threats after you have T. I also had extreme sound sensitivity for a long time. So even when you take precautions like I did, some environments might spur on more ringing and other substances.

      I wish everyone on this list quick recovery. Here in Portland, Oregon, they have been doing research with TMS electromagnets and have had promising results. I think that we may have at least that to work with soon. We are just waiting on the FDA. Also, more research about brain plasticity suggests that we should have several options soon the more we understand how to rewire neurons. Don't give up hope. Try to be as detached and observant as you can when you can, and keep looking for ways to convince your brain it is not in danger. Good luck.
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    2. DebInAustralia

      DebInAustralia Member Benefactor Advocate

      Geelong, Victoria
      Tinnitus Since:
      Very good post. Thankyou.

      I think the key message here is 'keep looking for ways to convince your brain it is not in danger.'

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