Tinnitus Getting Worse After Moderate Noise Exposure

Discussion in 'Support' started by Louise, Oct 11, 2012.

tinnitus forum
    1. Louise

      Louise Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Yorkshire, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      29/06/2012
      Since my tinnitus started (through excessive noise exposure) it has gotten worse twice. Each of these times it has got worse through exposure to what you would consider normal noise. Once its been made worse it does not go back down to its previous level. So I dont consider it a 'spike'. Is anyone else getting this?
       
    2. DezDog
      Angry

      DezDog Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2009
      I definitely think it's worse when I worry that I've been exposed to loud noise. It's hard to know if it's just the worry though. I read again and again that you can't do any damage with everyday sound levels.
       
    3. dan
      Chatty

      dan Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2011
      Louise, can you be more specific about the type and volume of noise you were exposed to, and how much louder are you perceiving your t now?
       
    4. Louise

      Louise Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Yorkshire, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      29/06/2012
      No, its not worry. Twice it has got a lot worse when I didnt even realise I was in an overly-noisey situation and didnt worry about it. The first time I kept trying to think what could have caused it and then I realised it was the theatre. So, I wasnt actually worrying about having caused more damage when it got worse.

      It may not be causing 'damage' in terms of the tiny hairs but noise is definitely doing something.
       
    5. Louise

      Louise Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Yorkshire, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      29/06/2012
      Hi Dan,

      The tinnitus was caused by a very loud live rock band and me unwittingly being stood next to a speaker. That noise was a constant high-ish pitched ringing. But, it had no peripheral noise with it, it was very much one static tone. And it was stable. It was in one ear only.
      Then I went to the theatre to see Phantom and the T turned into a higher pitched more electricity sounding, radio trying to tune in noise with little 'tunes' in it and peripheral noise like static, white noise. It went sort of 'searing'.
      Then this last weekend I went to a Hyperbaric Oxygen Chamber to test if Id be ok and breathed in oxygen through a tube and the pulling of the oxygen was loud. The T volume increased and has gone more 'searing' and now its also started in the other ear (the previously 'good' ear which was next to the oxygen inlet tube).

      Cant believe I've now got it in both ears. This thing is merciless.
       
    6. erik
      Breezy

      erik Manager Staff Benefactor

      Location:
      Washington State, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/15/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Most likely hearing loss
      I think it will get worse if you let your emotions and fears do the thinking for you. Anytime you are anticipating that it will get worse because of an upcoming situation or a noisy situation happens by surprise, you get the same emotional reaction of fear of it getting louder and that is precisely what it does. There is strong evidence that T is tied into our limic system which regulates everything from emotion to behavior to memory. Plus your auditory system functions differently in noisy situations almost like it does in near quiet situations. It will heighten its response so you can better hear. In quiet, your sense of hearing is increased for protection and in a noisy environment it is increased to help you distinguish sounds and hear more precisely.
       
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    7. Louise

      Louise Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Yorkshire, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      29/06/2012
      I did not anticipate it would get worse. I never thought for one second that the theatre would do that, it didnt cross my mind before I went or after I was there. I was shocked to realise the day after that it had made it worse. Its not emotion or worry, it is noise actually really making it worse.
       
    8. erik
      Breezy

      erik Manager Staff Benefactor

      Location:
      Washington State, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/15/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Most likely hearing loss
      Mine does too fluctuate in noisy environments but always eventually goes back down. I find that the more anxious I am in a setting, the worse I perceive it to be, but maybe that is me. I went to the movies last night and had a great time. No spike or increase in T. In fact this morning it is quite low. I just used my musician's ear plugs and enjoyed a good flick.
       
    9. Louise

      Louise Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Yorkshire, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      29/06/2012
      How long is 'eventually' Erik? Its 6 weeks tomorrow since I went to the theatre and the volume increase and type of sound has remained the same since then, no going back down to previous level at all.
       
    10. click
      Busy

      click Member Benefactor

      Location:
      West Cornwall, England, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/04/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Not sure
      I think we all have different types of T - possibly because they're caused by different things - not sure!

      I've given this a huge amount of thought because I was told by the ENT that stress can cause T, make it seem louder etc. and I know without a shadow of a doubt that it doesn't have this effect on my T.

      My T does not get worse because of stress or worry. In a stressful difficult situation it doesn't get louder & I can't hear it more.

      It gets louder when it wants to, gets softer when it wants to & disappears completely when it wants to but it's not related to stress. I'm saying 'when it wants to' but obviously I do keep thinking there is a cause.. a reason... it's just that it isn't stress or me 'being more aware of it'.

      It's also actually louder when it's louder - it's not me listening more for it, being in a quiet environment or being 'more aware of it'.

      And when it's just a soft tinkle it really is a soft tinkle - it's not because I'm not listening for it. or because I'm relaxed and not stressed.

      Even at the beginning the stress I went through didn't make the T worse.

      No sleep made me stress more & the anxiety worse but it didn't give me louder T.

      T caused me immense stress & anxiety but it didn't work the other way round. On the days when something else caused me stress or anxiety the T could be barely audible, not there at all or screaming loudly. So my stress wasn't affecting my T - the level of my T affected my stress levels but my T didn't get worse or louder because of them.

      Gosh I'm sure I could have written this more succinctly but it's been a long working day :notworthy:
       
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    11. click
      Busy

      click Member Benefactor

      Location:
      West Cornwall, England, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/04/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Not sure
      ps. even when something dropped on my head yesterday & I was really worried that it would affect my T the worry & stress didn't make it louder or more annoying.
       
    12. Petloy
      Happy

      Petloy Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2012
      Louise

      My T started August 1, 2012 a high pitch in the middle of the head, then last Sept 7 I attended church service (not wearing ear plugs at this time)with very amplified music my T changed to a higher pitch, then again last Sept 19 a fire alarm got me even though I was wearing plugs then my T is piercing, higher shrill, it will be six weeks (since the first incident) this Friday so Let me know your progress -) BTW, I had an audiogram last Sept 10 I have mild high frequency hearing loss at 6-8 khz (30-40 Dcb)

      My T level seems to be back to baseline, but the pitch is now a much higher one than before. I noticed that the more I think about the What If (i didnt go or what if I avoided the alarm) the more T will spike.. so I just let it go, chuck it as lesson learned and from now on PROTECT my ears and it actually helps...T is still there but I just continually remind myself so what? it's just a noise...I will live my life without fear of it...hopefully I will get more good days than bad...I can live with that...

      Peter
       
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    13. Louise

      Louise Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Yorkshire, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      29/06/2012
      Your experience is similar to mine then Peter, with the exception that your T went back down to baseline in volume at least, if not pitch.

      I now have to protect my ears at all times, I cant cope with another change in it, I havent even got used to this change yet. It was stable until I went to the theatre, now it has a life and mind of its own.

      I also have a mild hearing loss at 6-7khz of 25-30db.

      I like your attitude and if it becomes stable again and I lose the fear of it getting worse then I will try to adopt that attitude.

      I'm seeing a Hearing Specialist who specialises in Tinnitus this afternoon so I hope to know more about why its so unstable now and affected by normal noise.
       
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    14. Petloy
      Happy

      Petloy Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2012
      Louise,

      After the second incident for me, I seem to have develop a fear for loud noises I wore ear plugs most of the time...(NOT A GOOD IDEA) My H is back, cant tolerate loud noises for now...but I'm slowly not using the ear plugs now, Our ears need noises, we just have to watch out for really loud ones that can damage our hearing further...I'm still coping, just 5 days ago i inadvertently blasted my ears with earphones (volume was too loud when I turned an App on) I panicked and posted in this board I got good advises my anxiety probably got the best of me...but T is back to baseline. Baby steps...
       
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    15. Louise

      Louise Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Yorkshire, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      29/06/2012
      The noise doesnt have to be really loud to make my T louder. Not what you would normally consider really loud anyway. And once its gone louder it does not come back down. Its not a spike for me, it actually gets worse and stays worse. I'm not risking any more of that until I think there's some stability with them.

      I didnt get the chance to talk about why its getting worse with the Hearing Specialist and have to wait until my next app next week for that. His premise on the whole thing is that the noises have always been there but we never noticed them before as the brain has filters in place. The brain removes these filters when you get a hearing loss to try to compensate for what cant be heard anymore. So then you can also hear the other noises. Makes sense I suppose.
       
    16. Fish
      Balanced

      Fish Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Poland
      Tinnitus Since:
      July 2012
      According to this theory, would that mean using hearing aids will at least partially "patch up" the damage and cause brain to restart those filters you speak of? But how to explain people who have no hearing loss, yet suffer from loud tinnitus? Hmm.
       
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    17. Louise

      Louise Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Yorkshire, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      29/06/2012
      Yes Fish, my thoughts too.

      The premise of the Hearing Specialist is that the use of a hearing aid, (which in time may be the recommendation for me), gives back to the brain what its missing, the brain then has no need to remove the filters and the tinnitus can no longer be heard. He also said that my hearing is on 'red alert' and therefore its very much increased in sensitivity. Its trying to get back the hearing in the damaged portion by doing what it can to increase the hearing there.

      I can understand the logic in this and presume that this is only a potential answer for those of us who have hearing-loss induced tinnitus.

      I'm quite angry that I suggested this to the NHS audiologist in the first 3 weeks of this nightmare. Didnt take a genius to work it out. But, he said that there would be no point as my hearing is 'good'. Now 4 months have passed and the tinnitus signal is well entrenched as a 'threat'.
      I must say the NHS have been absolutely, 100% sh*t in my dealings with them re the tinnitus and that includes the supposed ENT surgeon.
       
    18. dan
      Chatty

      dan Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2011
      I am very sure that once they can actually see thousands of damaged cochlea in vivo, using the new laser technology, they'd be able to come up with a plausible explanation as to why deaf people often dont have tinnitus.
      I think its in the way the hair cells are actually structurally damaged after trauma.
       
    19. Jodi
      Confused

      Jodi Member

      Location:
      Europe
      Tinnitus Since:
      03/1999
      So, how is it going today, still the same "new" level?

      I´m having this question ATM. I want to be able to still have a social life; clubs, cinema, koncerts... But I´m not sure if -25dB custom made earplugs will be enough protection?
       
    20. Sean

      Sean Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01-01-2011
      Jodi - not to Discourage you but I would not to concerts if you have tinnitus .
      Leaving with increased Tinnitus versus temporary pleasure for 3-4 hours - not worth it in my opinion .
      I LOvE going to concerns and movies ,but I have made a decision not to go any more .its a bit** when T spikes for month!
       
    21. Sean

      Sean Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01-01-2011
      I am just wondering if you have Tinnitus and if you we're exposes to loud noise( movies ,concerts etc). Does it go back down to normal level ? I know Mick was exposed to noise and his T is not going down after 6 weeks .
      I Would appreciate if every one let us know their experience.
      Mine did go down after exposure but I feel my volume has increased little bit after I went to see a movie about 3 months ago and my frequency of minor spike ( without any reason ) has gone up .
       
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    22. Sean

      Sean Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01-01-2011
      Louise - mine had spiked after I went to see the movie . Took me about 8 weeks but I feel my volume has increased little bit .i just created a separate thread and I am trying to get opinion from every one about their experience in this matter.
       
    23. Sean

      Sean Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01-01-2011
      Louise - same here .i never thought theater would increase it !
      I went to concent and it was not loud at all! My T had spiked like crazy for 4 months .it was the worst spike and torture !
       
    24. mick1987
      No Mood

      mick1987 Member

      Location:
      UK (England)
      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Hello Sean, yeah my tinnitus is still higher after slamming shut a car bonnet, I know I did some damage because I got temporary threshold shift for a week.

      6 weeks now and it's the same, it's a different pitch as well, it went from a mild hiss noise, to a gas leak noise, higher sounding, so annoying.

      I am pretty sceptical that this is only a temporary spike, because of the TTS.
      When you got the 4 month spike did you get TTS (stuffy, blocked ears) after the noise?
       
    25. Louise

      Louise Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Yorkshire, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      29/06/2012
      I havent been on the site for quite a long time but I am actually still struggling with the increases in the tinnitus.
      I started back at work, an office with quite a lot of people in it and quite loud air con. My tinnitus increased. Just gradually increased during a 3 month period whilst I was there. It also firmly appeared in my right ear (it started out only in the left) so its now in both. That contract finished and I started a new contract 2 weeks ago, again its increased. The sound is also changing. I put it down to being in noise. Only office noise mind, but that seems to be enough to make it worse.

      What I've done, or rather am trying to do, is to just accept it. I dont know where its going to go, what its going to change into, but I cannot stop working because of it. So what will be will be. I've given up guessing and trying to work out the causes. I just carry on.
       
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      • Like Like x 1
    26. Jodi
      Confused

      Jodi Member

      Location:
      Europe
      Tinnitus Since:
      03/1999
      Sorry to hear that. But personally, I´m having a hard time believeing that regular office noise can actually make noise induced T go even worse, since an office should not be louder than about 85dB or so... My guess would be that stress and anxiety changes the perception of T, but should not damage hair cells, i.e. should not cause new/worsend permanent damage, and therefor not cause more/louder T.

      Anyone agree?
       
    27. object16
      Magical

      object16 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      1988
      The exact same thing happens to me. Loud noise and it goes much higher, then over period of months settles down a little bit, but not a complete recovery. I have to be really careful with any noise at all now. Just a dental procedure with drilling will now make it go worse. 3 months ago it was at the point where I thought I would probably be in a pine box very soon, this was just after getting some dental crown work done, with high speed grinding of the tooth to prepare it for a crown. Now, just to sleep I need a bag of meds, which I definitely do not like, but I have no choice, I cannot sleep at all without heavy doses of meds now. This is so crazy. All the time, I listen to Restful Rain pink noise and white noise to try to "habituate", and the progress is very very slow. I am getting better bit by bit, but nowhere near as good as I was a year and a half ago. I am going to try the "music therapy" method that I read about on internet, where you play quiet easy listening music on repeat, to "reset" the cortical neurons.
       
    28. mick1987
      No Mood

      mick1987 Member

      Location:
      UK (England)
      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      office noise wouldn't cause increased tinnitus, i got temporary threshold shift for the second time slamming shut a heavy car bonnet 6 weeks ago today, my ears felt severely blocked for a week after, now that is damage, leaving me with a permanent increase in my tinnitus. im gutted!
       
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    29. Sean

      Sean Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01-01-2011
      Micke: i never got stuffy ears. I really dont think your spike is because of closing the bonnet because what you are describing is almost like an ear infection.

      man i know how badly T sucks!!. I hope you t goes down..I know you live with your room mate. WHat about getting water fountain to mask the T?
       
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    30. Eric N

      Eric N Member

      Location:
      Montreal QC
      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2012
      The office where is work is around 55 db with the aircon on, my tinnitus does spike but I don't think it is because of the noise level but rather the type of noise itself. White noise aggravates my tinnitus and the AC produces a similar sound, but when I wake up the next day the tinnitus is usually back to normal level.
       

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