Sound Reactive Tinnitus. Help Please.

Discussion in 'Support' started by Barrowww, Sep 29, 2014.

    1. Barrowww

      Barrowww Member

      Location:
      Czech Republic
      Tinnitus Since:
      7/2014
      Hello everybody, could you please help me?

      I have no idea how to try to habituate to my sound-reactive tinnitus. It goes "volume up" with any louder sound around me, even my own voice. Then it goes back down. Let's say a dog barks: WHOOF! My tinnitus goes: BEEEP! Let's say somebody (or I) yells: HEY THERE! My tinnitus goes: B-BEEP! Let's say I'm in a car. The tinnitus goes volume up until I stop the engine. Not persistent. Just reacting.

      I know I could habituate to constant tinnitus over time, I did once before, but now this: after acoustic shock, when tinnitus became much louder and reactive. I'm 2 months with this. Losing hope. Looking for strategy.

      Please, give me some advise how to try to habituate to this. Any idea or experience helps.

      (I am planning to do TRT and whatever it takes. Now I am looking for coping methods in everyday life.)
       
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    2. derpytia
      Pooptoast

      derpytia Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Rescue, California
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Hearing loss / ETD
      I don't really have any advice for how to habituate again but I have the same kind of T as you do. What I do is wear musician's earplugs to bring the sound down 25dB and that makes my reactive T a little less... intrusive and much more bearable.

      I wear them in the car, when I'm walking on the streets, when I'm at the store, when I'm in a coffee shop. Pretty much whenever I'm out in public.
       
      • Informative Informative x 1
    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Barrowww

      Barrowww Member

      Location:
      Czech Republic
      Tinnitus Since:
      7/2014
      Thank you. I got the musician earplugs too, yet I don't use them much. I try not to avoid the sound, as in hyperacusis protocol, I guess I should train the brain "it's all right". It's just so hard. I've read a lot about tinnitus, I get the Jastreboff principle, but I just don't understand this reactiveness.
       
    4. billie48
      Sunshine

      billie48 Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2009
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      not sure
      Hi Barrowww, when I got my T 5 years ago, an ultra high pitch dog whistle, I felt the same way of my T reacting to sound. Then severe H followed and I had to wear ear plugs to protect from piercingly hurtful normal sounds. I bought $200 worth of various plugs ready for a life time of sound protection. But forum members advised me to not over protect to avoid developing sound sensitivity. So I took off the ear plugs slowly and reluctantly. Over the next year or so, H just faded. T no longer displayed the sound reactive tendency and now I can watch cinema movie without ear plugs. If it got really loud, I just used my fingers. LOL. I can also fly long inter-continental flights without using any ear plugs. Again, the fingers and the ipod ear buds if needed but rarely. So don't worry or panic about your sound reactive T. It may be just a temporary period before your ears and T settle down. Stay positive and relax. The less stress, the less loud the T may become. Nothing to lose by staying more relax and positive. Take care.
       
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    5. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Barrowww

      Barrowww Member

      Location:
      Czech Republic
      Tinnitus Since:
      7/2014
      Thank you for encouraging words, Billie. I will hope and believe this reactive nightmare will pass. I am training my ears to the sounds as you said. It has cut me off socially. I guess I'll just have to carry on and believe my brain can fix this.
       
    6. billie48
      Sunshine

      billie48 Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2009
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      not sure
      Ya, tell me about cutting off social life. During the darkest time, my ears couldn't handle any normal sounds, those from tv, restaurant, dishes, parties, driving, social conversation, not even the soft voice of my wife spoken too close. Gosh it was tough. I had to withdraw from social contacts and stay in my quiet room. But quietness or using the ear plugs means the loud and ultra high pitch dog whistle was absolutely unbearable. So I was stuck between the two monsters and choosing one means the other became unbearable. That was the dark, dark period of my life. But things take time to settle down and get better, at least for my case. Hope you will be just fine. Take it easy and be patient.
       
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    7. Telis

      Telis Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Drugs barotrauma
      I personally would protect and avoid a lot of sound for the first few months. I believe my mistake was trying to get back into the groove too soon. I would go out to a pub around 70db at times, I ended up with permanent spikes and new sounds that are still with me today.
       
      • Agree Agree x 2
    8. Lisa88

      Lisa88 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2013
      What brand of musicians earplugs did you get, derpytia? I have reactive t also, and am a musician. Time I invest in a pair of those :) Thanks.
       
    9. Zimichael

      Zimichael Member Benefactor

      Location:
      N. California
      Tinnitus Since:
      (1956) > 1980 > 2006 > 2012 > (2015)
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ac. Trauma & Ac.Trauma + Meds.
      @Barrowww ...I think you read this link below? If not I suggest you do. It may help you sort some things out.
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/tinnitus-vs-tinnitus-hyperacusis-some-basic-differences.5110/
      Reactive T (or hyperacusis, or reactive hyperacusis, or whatever we call it) is a whole different animal to "normal T". I strongly believe you cannot treat it the same way. It's a real she-dog.

      We had a very great guy on the forum called "I who love music", and you might want to search some of his old posts. In short he used to adopt a "cotton wool comfort treatment" for his T when it got bad. Also there are advocates of "silence" for a a meaningful drop in reactivity over time...yeah that actually holds.

      Read the above link and you will see that my 'experienced position' on all this is that: A period of increased hyperacusis/reactive tinnitus, is a helluva lot better than a permanent increase in your volume of tinnitus! So I consider a period of "over-protection" an essential component to reactive T. My H goes down about 5% to 10% per year, irrespective. My increased T volumes - yes plural...do not!
      Look closely, I say period ref. increased avoidance and sound protection...not forever.

      Lastly, if your ears ever feel "bruised" too (usually only from temporal = time exposure to louder sound) watch out big time!!! That has invariably led to > T volume for me unless I pull back from sound radically. It's a clear "warning sign" that damage is lurking just around the exposure corner. Trust me on that!...Though as always, we are all different and ultimately you have to figure out your own road with all this.

      Good luck...and as Clinton said: "I feel your pain".
      Best, Zimichael
       
      • Informative Informative x 1
    10. derpytia
      Pooptoast

      derpytia Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Rescue, California
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Hearing loss / ETD
      Mine are Westones er-25
       
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    11. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Barrowww

      Barrowww Member

      Location:
      Czech Republic
      Tinnitus Since:
      7/2014
      Thank you all for your answers. After finally finding a doctor who tested my LDLs, I'm finding out that I really am hyperacustic (even when 3 doctors before told me I'm not, without even suggesting LDL). So I know what's going on now. I'll try to get help with this and see. :)
       
    12. Philip83
      Jaded

      Philip83 Member Podcast Patron Benefactor

      Location:
      Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      2001
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Moped (2001) Noise blast (2014) Club (2017) Snowboard (2018)
      I know you haven't been on here for ages. But I started experiencing just what you are describing yesterday, seemingly out of the blue. I've had tinnitus for 20 years and all kinds of spikes and increases, but never anything like this. It sucks big time and I'd love to hear from someone that has experiences this that had it go away, because shit, I don't know what to do otherwise.
       
    13. GBB

      GBB Member

      Location:
      NYC
      Tinnitus Since:
      2016-2019 (Mild, Cured) 8/2020 (Severe)
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Microsuction / Additional Acoustic Trauma in Close Proximity
      Keppra has been reported to help in these cases. I’ve spoken to people here and on Reddit who said it made their reactivity dramatically lessened.
       
    14. BuzzyBee
      Not amused

      BuzzyBee Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Not Sure
      @Philip83 I am sorry you are dealing with it, but it seems like most people's reactive tinnitus (or hyperacusis) goes away. Mine is still reactive after 5 years, but at the 3 year mark I was able to handle the reactivity a little better. It never stopped being reactive, but I was less bothered by the trigger sounds like ACs, water, driving, music. It's just terribly frustrating because people advise you to use maskers and avoid silence when those are the things that make it worse.

      @GBB Thanks for sharing that info about the Keppra. I thought reactive tinnitus was bad until it changed to what may or may not be MES. Still trying to figure that out. The MES is easier to deal with during the day because you can surround yourself with sound and mask it, but it's awful at night -- especially if it pulses. I still can't mask the static tinnitus caused by ventilation systems, the TV, and all the things mentioned above, but interestingly now I welcome the static sometimes because it masks the horrible music thing.
       
    15. Philip83
      Jaded

      Philip83 Member Podcast Patron Benefactor

      Location:
      Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      2001
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Moped (2001) Noise blast (2014) Club (2017) Snowboard (2018)
      Keppra is a pretty strong medicine with potentially severe side effects though. I'm passing on it for the moment.
       
    16. Philip83
      Jaded

      Philip83 Member Podcast Patron Benefactor

      Location:
      Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      2001
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Moped (2001) Noise blast (2014) Club (2017) Snowboard (2018)
      Thanks for your reply @BuzzyBee. For me, the reactiveness is not so much from the continuous sounds like you are describing though. Those are fine for me at reasonable levels. For me it's more the sudden sounds with variation in them, like speech, including my own, that triggers it - as if the beep/pain matches the external sound in length and strength.
       
    17. BuzzyBee
      Not amused

      BuzzyBee Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Not Sure
      I've experienced that twice and each time it lasted maybe an hour with the first experience being quite jarring. I remember being terrified and testing it to see if it would keep doing it. It always passed pretty quickly.
       
    18. GBB

      GBB Member

      Location:
      NYC
      Tinnitus Since:
      2016-2019 (Mild, Cured) 8/2020 (Severe)
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Microsuction / Additional Acoustic Trauma in Close Proximity
      Totally fair - another strong drug that drastically reduces these for me is Xanax. Not advocating you take it, but if you ever reach a point of real desperation, there are some tools in the toolkit.
       
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    19. Philip83
      Jaded

      Philip83 Member Podcast Patron Benefactor

      Location:
      Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      2001
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Moped (2001) Noise blast (2014) Club (2017) Snowboard (2018)
      That's great to hear. I'm unfortunately on my 5th consecutive day of it right now... :(
       
    20. Ava Lugo
      Gloomy

      Ava Lugo Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/03/19
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Virus
      Hey BuzzyBee, what kind of stuff does your tinnitus react to? Does it ever react to voices on tv and music? I’m losing it because it’s been a year for me and mine reacts to everything! I don’t know how to cope with it and feel my life is ruined. I’m only 24 and it all started after I got a cold a year ago. I don’t know what that cold virus did to me exactly. My hearing has remained the same. I was born with severe hearing loss and wear hearing aids but I have no idea what caused mine. It just happened after that cold went away. The reactive tinnitus makes music sound “off” for me. I don’t know why. I guess because I get beeps and not just static and I read your reactive sound is static noise.

      How did you deal with your reactive tinnitus? Can you hear yours clearly over cars driving by? You don’t have to “look for it” to hear it over things? I hear mine clearly outside and am aware of my tinnitus most of the time. It makes going for a walk not very pleasant... I want maskable tinnitus lol. I don’t know why mine reacts to speech even... I’m so depressed so I need advice from someone who’s dealt with it.

      Do you have reactive tinnitus on a daily basis?
       
    21. BuzzyBee
      Not amused

      BuzzyBee Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Not Sure
      @Ava Lugo I am sorry to hear about your reactive tinnitus and I know what you are going through. It will get better, but it takes time.

      Yes, I can hear mine over cars, over the din of a restaurant and just walking around in a loud city. The louder the environment, the louder the tinnitus.

      I pretty much gave up on music for about 2 years, and then at some point I started listening to it again and realizing I didn't care so much that it was always accompanied by static. Right now I'm sitting here listening to piano music and enjoying it immensely even though the static is buzzing right along.

      Unfortunately I've developed tones and beeping again and it's a constant annoying loop of sounds which I just have to ignore by amplifying other sounds and mixing them on an app. I have a new appreciation for DJs, that's for sure. But nights are still excruciatingly difficult because unlike reactive tinnitus, the new tinnitus doesn't ever settle down, and it's the loneliest feeling in the world to be trapped in your head with it when no one else can hear.

      So I know what you are going through and am in the middle of it, but I have faith that we will both work through it because brains adapt eventually. You just have to keep moving and focusing on the things you still can do.
       
    22. Ava Lugo
      Gloomy

      Ava Lugo Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/03/19
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Virus
      I believe I can eventually adapt or things can get better. Do you have reactive tinnitus on a daily basis? Mine is constant. I wonder why reactive tinnitus starts? I have hearing loss but never had reactive tinnitus until after that cold a year ago. What caused yours?
       
    23. BuzzyBee
      Not amused

      BuzzyBee Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Not Sure
      Mine came on suddenly after an ear infection. And yes, it's reactive all the time. Mechanical noises, sizzling, compressors and ventilation systems make it buzz. Sometimes it is loud for no reason like when I go to be and after I eat. Hearing aids don't do anything to help it and masking noises just make it worse. Some say it's hyperacusis and some say it's tinnitus so nobody even knows what reactive tinnitus is. I think the brain is bored and has trained itself to react to certain things and that maybe it's a form of hyperacusis rather than tinnitus or a cruel combination.

      But now on top of that I have tinnitus that sounds like a car alarm and feels like something is really wrong, but there's no one who can tell me what it is or help so I'm about to lose it. :mad:
       
    24. Ava Lugo
      Gloomy

      Ava Lugo Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/03/19
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Virus
      I think I read in one of your posts that you look forward to good days so what does good days mean for you if your tinnitus is reactive everyday? Does that mean your mood is better on some days even though on good days you still hear it over everything or that you wake up with quieter tinnitus and in quiet rooms it's still on the low side as opposed to spiking real loud after you have been exposed to noise?
       
    25. BuzzyBee
      Not amused

      BuzzyBee Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Not Sure
      It is quieter in a quiet room and it reacts with quieter static. So on a good day I can just ignore it because it isn't loud. Being in a mad or good mood doesn't make it worse or better. It does what it does, unfortunately.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    26. GBB

      GBB Member

      Location:
      NYC
      Tinnitus Since:
      2016-2019 (Mild, Cured) 8/2020 (Severe)
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Microsuction / Additional Acoustic Trauma in Close Proximity
      I started on it yesterday, FYI.
       
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