Tinnitus Disability in Ontario, Canada?

Discussion in 'Support' started by Narciso, Oct 29, 2015.

    1. Narciso

      Narciso Member

      Location:
      Ontario
      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2013
      Has anyone out there in Ontario (or other part of Canada) being approved for disability due to Tinnitus?

      I would really appreciate you share your experience.
       
    2. John G

      John G Member

      Hi Narcisco,

      Great question. I would also like to know the answer to your question. I bet it would be hard to get disability because how could we explain/prove to doctor that what the tinnitus is doing to us. For me the ringing,fullness in ear causes me to be out of touch mentally and cant concentrate,extreme fatigue etc....but I bet my doc would say its all stress and you are fine. I hate my doctor lol
       
    3. CDNThailand

      CDNThailand Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/17/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      MP3, Stress, TMJ
      I wonder also
       
    4. RonnieCarzatto
      Cynical

      RonnieCarzatto Member

      Location:
      Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      Feb 01 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Mild head injury maybe... but who knows...
      I live in Southern Ontario in the Greater Toronto Area. Short answer is no. Went to emerg. about tinnitus, was sent on my merry way saying "it usually resolves itself". Saw the very uninterested doctor for less than 5 minutes despite an 8 hour wait. Despite mentioning how debilitating it was and the extreme lack of sleep I'm getting. The depression, etc.. She saw no ear drum damage and determined my hearing was fine. I think she thiught I was overexaggerating the problem.

      Also went to my family doctor who had no clue. Said he would refer me to ENT. It's been two weeks and still I have heard nothing. Frankly, I don't think it's something taken very seriously around here.

      I'm sure certain circumstances, such as fully losing hearing, would say otherwise...

      There is a clinic that specializes in tinnitus treatments in Mississauga, Ontario.
       
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    5. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Tinnitus comes in many forms and intensities and no two people experience it the same. Contrary to what some people might believe, most medical doctors are aware of this and will support someone who is unable to work and wanting to claim disability for instance. Of course, this also depends on which country one lives. In the UK for example it is regarded as a disability by the relevant people dealing with disability and work. I will not go into too much detail in a public forum. However, I will say, if a person is genuine and their tinnitus is severe enough that it prevents them from working. Once they fit a certain criteria ( I'm not prepared to say what that is here) they are dealt with understanding and a degree of sympathy.

      However, if a person is able to chat in Internet forums and on other social media websites regularly, I think most people would agree, such a person can't then say, they have loud intrusive tinnitus that they find debilitating and prevents them from working or carrying out normal every day tasks.
      Michael
       
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    6. GregCA
      Jaded

      GregCA Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Otosclerosis
      It depends if their work consists of "chatting in Internet forums and other social media websites".
      It is quite possible that work has a much higher intellectual bar than "chatting on Internet forums", and while one can manage to do the latter, one can struggle greatly to do the former.
      Tasks don't all have the same cognitive difficulty. Many tasks are "burned in" from years of practice and are performed on some kind of brain auto-pilot. I'm talking about things like brushing your teeth, driving, eating, picking up the phone, etc. But as soon as you require real brain power, T can really throw you off.

      I think that's one of the reasons why the rest of the world doesn't see this disability: we can still perform every day tasks normally (in appearance). We get up, make our coffees, make breakfast, brush our teeth, take our shower, drive, etc... with an appearance of normalcy.
       
    7. John G

      John G Member

      @Michael Leigh your thoughts in your 2nd paragraph is all wrong. I read two or three paragraphs and I am done due to the tinnitus/concentration issues. Although I did just type this response,so I guess I am all good then
       
    8. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Hi @John G When you are able to I would like to have a chat with you in PM if I may and explain what I mean in more detail.
      All the best
      Michael
       
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    9. Paul10

      Paul10 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Stress
      The disability would be down to depression, anxiety.
      I'm not Canadian but ENT's don't seem to be much help either Ronnie, they take a very 'physical' approach, i.e. if you have nothing physically wrong, then you're sent on your way. Thankfully, my ENT referred me to the hospitals hearing therapist who is apparently the country's leading specialist in T, by sheer luck of the city I'm in. It's early days, we're still trying to figure out what's the best approach for my T (which developed a new tone yesterday; wonderful), but I would definitely look up who is your hospitals hearing therapist/T specialist, and if they don't have one, find out which hospitals nearby do.
       
    10. RonnieCarzatto
      Cynical

      RonnieCarzatto Member

      Location:
      Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      Feb 01 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Mild head injury maybe... but who knows...
      You hit the nail on the head. The doctors I have seen so far have only taken physical approaches; checking my balance, having me close my eyes and do little sounds from my ears; check my vision and perception, and check the inside of my ear. Since it all checked out, that was pretty much it in their books. I did attend a major hospital here who said they don't have a hearing/T specialist, however I have found several independent clinics that have tinnitus management on their website listed. Unfortunately it's not covered under Provincial insurance and costs a pretty penny. Ah well. I'm trying to take a more positive and less fearful/anxious approach. It's almost two months since I've had this life-destroying noise, I might as well make friends with it now.
       
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    11. Paul10

      Paul10 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Stress
      3 months for me, I know how it is! Don't go the private route until you've looked into all options. I was going to go private until I realised I could get it through the health service. But yeah not all hospitals have T specialists; just Google around for hospitals in your area and 'hearing therapists', they'll be the ones who know about T management. Also - mental health services can look around and put you in touch with T specialists. Good luck!
       
    12. Ringpopspin03

      Ringpopspin03 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      may24 2003
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      SSIHL live band at c'est what bar on front street in Toronto
      I was recently denied a disability claim with the Ontario government. It took me 15 years of suffering, denial of life impact, medical professional carousel, alternative medicine spent ALL of my savings, loss of career, self doubt, psychological defeat, social isolation, dependence on family, suicide contemplation, embarrassment and countless other compensations before I finally denigrated myself to apply for disability. I have learned a lot about myself through this private and personal sonic torture box that is my skull over the last decade and a half and I am grateful for that. There is a harsh reality however which is that my social, cognitive and productive aptitude have been egregiously diminished as a result of my SSIHL and associated wicked, chronic and pronounced tinnitus. It beat me. It broke me like a POW malnourished and caged. I tried for 8 years to get it fixed. I consulted every doctor here and in the USA...all tests MRI etc were fruitless, I paid for alternative therapy like LL laser, acupuncture, changed diets, fasted, prayed...every modality left me either broke or with the "learn to live with it" diagnosis.

      So

      I recently applied for disability with the Ontario government. I am embarrassed to do so. But I am fucked up. They said I have psychological problems not physical. They have no idea how loud it is. If I could "blutooth" my skull into theirs they would shit their pants in 15 mins and beg it to stop.

      Try 15 years.

      I will reapply...I need help. Its in my head but its not psychological.

      Maybe these articles will help
       

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    13. Autumnly
      Wishful

      Autumnly Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Hall of Fame Advocate

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      July/August 2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      I am so sorry to hear what you're going through. It's the same in Germany. Since ENTs, therapists, audiologists and even tinnitus associations have propagated the horrible misconception that loudness doesn't matter at all and that the type of tinnitus doesn't matter to the concept of habituation, tinnitus isn't seen as a debilitating condition in itself - it's just your reaction that makes it debilitating.

      There are so, so many cases of people in Germany trying to apply for disability benefits due to tinnitus being literally told that their condition can't be debilitating and that it's a psychological issue instead. We need to stand up against this, we need to speak out against this, we need to make it clear that tinnitus can be debilitating in itself.

      I am so tired of reading things like "the actual reason why someone suffers from tinnitus is emotional acceptance" by people who clearly never experienced chronic severe tinnitus. Again, I'm so sorry to hear what you've been through and are still going through and I'm praying someone near you will be able to understand and help you.
       
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    14. Greg Sacramento

      Greg Sacramento Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      April 2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      syringing and now somatic T dental work
      No doubt about lack of disability @Autumnly and it's the same in the USA - including our military veterans. We needs glass roots campaigns done similar to an old fashion way which is by mail. If someone can type posts here, then they can type email letters.

      I think for our safety, public buildings, restaurants and hospitals need to turn their noise levels down and government officials need to be emailed about this. Hospitals, dental offices, and all care divisions need to be informed about unsafe procedures and unfriendly medications. Doctors need more education on prescription drugs choices and tapering methods. With this - emails need to be sent to the (AMA) American Medical Association and the (AHA) American Hospital Association. Also to the Chiefs of Staff who give hospitals accreditation.

      Email to associations are needed. I had sent emails to the (ADA) American Dental Association to include in their communications with member dentists - understanding the needs of someone with tinnitus. Dentists need to schedule more time for a tinnitus patient so that any drilling isn't a constant non stop nightmare.

      I have emailed congressman on many of our needs.

      I have written to hospitals to please include donation boxes for tinnitus research along with all their other boxes or at least donate a few pennies from their general medical research box. To donate to individuals for hearing aides with funds from their aide box. I see this old fashion awareness as being important, but it's going to take many emails and it won't cost a cent. Emails can be sent to officials within any country.
       
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    15. Mathieulh
      Balanced

      Mathieulh Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Paris, France
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/24/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Chronic headphones use and acute noise induced trauma.
      This is the same in France, it is impossible to get any kind of disability from tinnitus unless it comes with significant percieved hearing loss, so basically, I would need to damage my ear/hearing further to get anything.

      The recognition for this affliction is almost nonexistent in France (and most other countries), despite how debilitating it can be and how significantly it can impact the quality of life of individuals.
       
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    16. PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      This is insane. It's not a psychological condition but a physical one. The brain and/or ears are malfunctioning. It's not normal to receive a signal that results in a constant noise or sound you hear. It is only because no one else can hear or experience what you are going through, that the condition is ignored and disregarded.

      I think it's worse than a lot of other medical ailments and conditions for that exact reason. The more severe the tinnitus, the more that assertion is applicable.

      I was under the impression that the only cases in which tinnitus might be accepted as a disability is if you were employed by the RCMP?

      Since you have to approach it as a psychological issue, you probably need support from doctors, therapists, psychiatrists and need to accept medications which is not only unethical and inhumane but most of those medical professionals will have no insight or background regarding tinnitus.
       
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    17. PeteJ
      Depressed

      PeteJ Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma?
      Germany, Canada, the USA, France are all Western so-called "democratic" countries and are copy-cats or practically clones of each other. In other words, they are more or less the same with some negligible differences making some worse than others.

      The health systems are awful and people are stupid since they support the self-destruction of them. That is why (in a nutshell) the research in tinnitus is poor and why people are especially suffering.
       
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    18. Ken219
      Frustrated

      Ken219 Member

      Location:
      New York Area
      Tinnitus Since:
      Summer of 1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise exposure?
      Why do you say that?

      'Over 150,000 veterans were diagnosed with tinnitus in 2015 and nearly 1.5 million veterans are currently receiving disability benefits for it.'

      That is billions a year.
       
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    19. Candy

      Candy Member Benefactor Advocate

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unidentified
      This is a DISGRACE.

      Should we start a petition, maybe with the WHO?

      How do we go about it?

      1. Petition to get disability.
      2. Petition around noise levels, don’t get me started (seriously I can feel blood pressure boiling - we have empty noisy bars, cafes, ambulances that are higher than police sirens, planes above half of London non-stop). It’s a health crisis.

      We need a Tinnitus Talk manifesto.
       
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    20. Greg Sacramento

      Greg Sacramento Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      April 2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      syringing and now somatic T dental work
      The VA standards for disability for hearing loss are determined by the test results of speech recognition; pure tone threshold average; and/or combinations of both. Various levels of rating percentages can be issued based on the results of the testing. However, for tinnitus, there is specific ways to prove your case with the VA.

      Having a nexus statement is very important. Were you exposed to loud noises such as working on a flight line, working with or near explosives; exposed to explosives or gunfire during combat, etc. These can all be used as a nexus statement to show that you had an exposure that probably caused tinnitus. As with most conditions, veterans need the statement “more likely than not caused by….” for their claim to be substantiated. If the tinnitus was not caused by one of those factors, there must be some link to what you are claiming caused it. For example, if you are claiming it was due to medications, you must be able to prove, either with documentation or through lay statements, that you took the medications you say caused the tinnitus. Same with exposure, if you are saying it was caused by exposure to noise or chemicals, you must have some type of statement or documentation backing that claim up.

      One thing that is different here than many other medical conditions is that you can use only lay evidence to prove tinnitus. According to a ruling made by the United States Court of Appeals for Veteran Claims on February 9, 2015, in the case of Robert Fountain v. Robert McDonald, Secretary of Veteran’s Affairs; lay evidence may be used to prove the nexus, or link between the tinnitus and service. In the case of Robert Fountain, he had provided timelines of exposure to noises and symptoms to show how they had corresponded.

      Also, and this is so important to the VA that they put it in their regulations, the ringing must only be heard by the claimant. Yes, that is true, the VA Schedule for Rating Disabilities (VASRD) actually states that the tinnitus cannot be rated if anyone else can hear the ringing. Hmmmmm.

      How High Can I Get Rated?
      Unlike most other conditions, there is a limit on how high tinnitus can be rated. Regular or recurrent tinnitus carries a maximum rating of 10%, regardless of how bad it is or whether it is present in one or both ears. It can be rated separately from the condition it is related to such as hearing loss, psychiatric conditions, TBI, or other conditions if it is linked to one, but whether linked to another conditions or not, the maximum rating will always be 10%.

       
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    21. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      @Candy

      I agree with you that it is a disgrace that tinnitus is not seen as a disability in some countries. However, I assure you this is not the case in the UK. When a person has debilitating tinnitus in the UK and they want to apply for sickness benefit, certain criteria has to be met in order for them to be accepted. I have mentioned this a few times in this forum but will not go into specific details. If you would like to know the process, then I'll correspond with you by email.

      All the best
      Michael
       
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    22. Candy

      Candy Member Benefactor Advocate

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unidentified
      Thank you @Michael Leigh and for all the other info you mailed me, it was very useful.

      That’s reassuring... you never know.
       
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    23. Ken219
      Frustrated

      Ken219 Member

      Location:
      New York Area
      Tinnitus Since:
      Summer of 1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise exposure?
      @Candy I said it before but people on the boards hate to hear it.

      3M knowingly sold the military defective ear plugs from 2003 through 2015. If it wasn't for a whistle blower 3M would still be selling the defective ear plugs! 3M should not be allowed to have government contracts.
       
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    24. Fabrikat

      Fabrikat Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      1973
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Otosclerosis then volume then viral infection
      True. Around three billion dollars per year, making it the most claimed for disability.

      It's interesting that tinnitus disability is accepted by military clinicians, yet generally dismissed or downplayed by civilian ones.

      Military clinicians have no more access to objective measurements of tinnitus disability than do civilian doctors. Why the difference in attitudes?
       
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    25. Ken219
      Frustrated

      Ken219 Member

      Location:
      New York Area
      Tinnitus Since:
      Summer of 1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise exposure?
      It is called public money opposed to private money.
       

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