Tinnitus Saga

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by trancerobot, May 25, 2016.

    1. trancerobot

      trancerobot Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Hello! I've had tinnitus since 2000 or 2001, I don't remember exactly. I was on the bus after school, I think it was the last day of the year, and a kid behind me stuck something in my right ear. It like a blade of grass, but stronger, like wheat. To this day I'm not 100% sure what to call it, but I remember it, I saw it often in the school yard, and I can probably find it again.

      It hurt pretty bad, and I think the ringing started immediately. Being a kid though, I didn't want to show my rising sense of panic while on the bus. Boys are like this: we get hit, we shrug it off. Ignoring the consequences, this isn't close to the worst thing that happened to me at school or on the bus.

      But when I got home, I started to panic. Being either 2000 or 2001, and poor, I don't think we had the Internet. At this point, I'm not sure we even had a computer. So I couldn't look it up or try different things that might have helped. I remember flushing my ear out with water and then slamming my body into the bed multiple times to get the water out because it wasn't draining.

      Once I got the water out I gave up. The next year was spent learning to cope. I think I had an outburst in class shortly after where I was at my wit's end because of it. After that mom took it seriously and had me seen by an ENT.

      They prescribed the usual for ear infections, which did nothing, and on the checkup he basically told me that there's no cure and that I'll just have to learn to cope. He was very kind, and told me that he has it too. So looking at him, and knowing that he's managed all these years with it helped me understand that it's something I can learn to live with too.

      And so I did. I did very well, I think. It didn't keep me from sleeping (in fact I slept a little too well), studying, or doing anything that I wanted to do. Long stretches have been spent where I didn't even acknowledge that it was there until it was mysteriously not there. (That hasn't happened in a while.)

      I grew up, moved out, lived my life. Then I moved into my current apartment and things started to happen.

      First I noticed that I was more short of breath than usual. Then I noticed black rings forming in the sink drain and the toilets (including the toilet I almost never use). There's an orange ring on my shower head as well, and earlier I had to scrub my shower curtain down to get the stuff off (mostly black/gray).

      The apartment management says it's mildew, not mold, and that I should be fine. But I'm allergic to the stuff anyway (I have seasonal asthma - basically mold and mildew set me off, usually in the fall). So I knew then that I should probably move, but I took my time.

      Then I got an ear infection in my left ear...

      Then a year later ringing started in that ear and worsened in my right ear. I had trouble sleeping a couple nights recently. I didn't know what to do. Thankfully it varies, but whether it's because of something I'm doing or nature I can't be sure...

      Since then I've tried:
      • Cleaning out my ears with baking soda and water.
      • Visiting an ENT.
      • Reducing my intake of caffeine.
      • Taking decongestants.
      • Taking antihistamines.
      • Keeping the moldy bathrooms closed.
      • Listening to a ACRN beeping treatment thing.
      • Drinking more water.
      • Eating lemons.
      Lemons seem to help. I've had a couple days where it was really hard to notice the ringing in my left ear, and it reduced in my right ear, but it ever went away. I've coupled it with reducing my intake of salt, but sometimes I'm hungry and get something against my better judgement. I regret it about an hour later when they start screaming again.

      I've read lemons and low salt diets can help people if they have cochlear hydrops. I guess it helps me, but I'm not 100% sure yet. Right now the ringing kinda sucks but I ate something I shouldn't have yesterday so maybe that was it. That said, I often feel pressure in my right ear (the first to fall), and I felt it in my left before it all started. Since then I've intermittently felt something in both ears as opposed to just the one. I feel like it could be the hydrops thing, but I don't know.

      I find reading people's posts here to be helpful. The sense of hope is comforting. The ACRN beeping thing linked above and the lemons were found out about in places like this. Both are helpful to me, though the lemons more-so.

      So, here I am. Maybe if there's a breakthrough I'll learn about it here, or maybe share it with you if somehow I find it.
      • Hug Hug x 1
    2. Lorac

      Lorac Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Sudden profound hearing loss in left ear.
      Hello Trancerbott and welcome to TinnitusTalk! Sorry you needed to search for help but I hope you can find some help here. I have hearing loss and T but I don't have Cochlear Hydrops. I know there are some here who have that affliction though and I think you will find people who understand what you go through.
    3. Path Maker

      Path Maker Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      @trancerobot You'll get all sorts of support and info here and hope some of it is directly helpful to you! You are well-motivated and cope well. I hope that you are able to get entirely away from the mold issue. I know it's a pain to move, but it really could be having a bad impact on your overall health!
    4. AUTHOR

      trancerobot Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Thanks for the kind words. I don't know if I have that - its not a diagnosis from a doctor, but it seemed convenient considering how it helped me to watch my salt intake and eat lemons (a diuretic). It was an interesting idea, however, now I'm not sure. I think it's possible fluid pressure could have an affect on T in any case.

      Last night I put Lamisil in my ears. I'm pleased that it hasn't made things worse, and I couldn't go on not knowing if it was possible that it was all the result of mold or mildew. I'm not ready to say it has helped yet either. My left ear has had a couple small pops and the ringing has gone way down over the course of the day, which is really promising. But I also flushed them both out with baking soda water again (beforehand), and even used alcohol on q-tips and veeeeery carefully dabbing my ear drums. Q-tips are a no-no... I know... I bought them to put the Lamisil in and I don't intend to do the alcohol thing again because even that small amount made my ear canal feel kind of raw. I am at the very least absolutely positive that my ears aren't packed in wax. I know it can be hard to tell if its hardened - but having touched the drums themselves and having flushed a few times (including once by an ENT with a vacuum before a hearing test) I think it's clear, so I can scratch that off my list of possible causes.

      Yeah, I got a good look at the second restroom this morning. I rarely go in there and now I am totally confident that I need to move. My neighbors have been moving in and out constantly over the same period that I've been here (since 2013). I thought it was really weird, but the management said that's normal when I mentioned it. I mean... I'm not exactly new to renting, but whatever.

      They have some newly renovated apartments for a fair price but I think I need to get away from the management too. There's a long story there and I don't want to go into it, but lets say I knew them from before I moved here, and the last place they managed went to hell too. It was my mistake for not immediately remembering them, but whatever.
    5. AUTHOR

      trancerobot Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:

      The anti-fungal idea didn't work at all. That was silly of me to try, but I guess I can rule out an infection of that sort.

      Severity of the tinnitus appears to be dependent on more than just salt, but I'm not sure what else yet. Perhaps MSG is to blame. I say this because some salty things I can eat without ruining my day, and some I can't. The thing to avoid absolutely are fast food chicken strips and Little Caesar's Pizza. Perhaps all pizza... =(

      My best days are the ones where I eat nothing but salads and fruits in the past 24 hours. I imagine if I swore away meat and fast food I'd probably stabilize my tinnitus.

      Currently I'm trying out magnesium supplements, but I got the cheap oxide stuff and not anything anyone here recommends. No ill effects, and it might be helping a little, but if it is it could just as easily be a normal variation of the ringing...I can't tell.

      I think I can blame my use of Vitamin D3 for the worsened situation. I was taking it just before this started because it seemed like I was running out of energy after work way too quickly. I thought it would help, and I think it did, but one day I lost track of how many I had taken, and I might have taken too much a couple of times. I don't really know. I hear it can cause tinnitus, and that you should take magnesium with it, but I guess it's too late to think about that now.

      On my very best days, where I eat the best and when the ringing is at its lowest (which it can get pretty low, I kind of wish I tried changing my diet earlier when it was just the one ear), I can hear an occasional rumbling in the right ear, and feel a kind of tension... almost a kind of muscle spasm. Thankfully it's brief.

      Meanwhile, my left ear is much less random and it doesn't seem to react as quickly to what I eat. If it does, the change is too slow for me to follow, though I am able to measure it and it does change. Sometime for the better, sometimes for the worse. It never seems worse than my left year, but it can get pretty close - which is weird when I seem to be able to hear just fine in it otherwise.

      The other day a new tone appeared. This happens in my right ear occasionally, and it's usually something low, between 400 and 1000 Hz. Normally I wouldn't be bothered by it - they usually go away - but with what's happened lately I've gotten fearful about it. It went away when I popped my ear, which itself is weird. Of course the steady higher tone remains.

      I'm imagining a simple cause to all of this, that I'll find out some time in the future and shake my head about all the needless suffering. My suspicion is that it's just the poor diet and lack of exercise in general... of course I am working to change that.

      From what I've read here, this can get much worse. I can still focus, sleep, and enjoy music. For how long is a factor I'd like to retain some control over.

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