Tinnitus with Anxiety, Irritability, Anxiety, and Depression — Nobody Seems to Care!

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by Snowcat, May 3, 2021.

    1. Snowcat

      Snowcat Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      May 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Hello to all fellow sufferers.

      I`ve had high pitched tinnitus in both ears for 2 years now which is slowly increasing in volume and no-one in the medical world seems able to offer any help whatsoever.

      When the tinnitus began, I went to my GP who prescribed antidepressants (Mirtazapine, then Citalopram, then Trazodone) which only made things worse. He then referred me to the Audiology dep`t at the local hospital who tested my hearing which was found to be pretty good for my age (53 years) apart from a slight dip at 4 kHz in the left ear. I also had a head scan to rule out any internal growths as 12 years ago I had a total Thyroidectomy due to Cancer.

      My GP now has no idea what to offer to help me cope with the tinnitus (lack of sleep, irritability, anxiety & depression) apart from suggesting sleeping tablets. The Audiologist said she could offer no suggestions to help as my hearing is good and said I need to get used to it!

      Well after 2 years of feeling like a zombie and the noise getting louder and higher pitched I feel there is no hope and for the first time in my life have seriously contemplated suicide as I`m so miserable. I have no-one to leave behind (no kids, partner or close friends) and have reached about as far as I`m able to go. The last few years have been hell and the next few don`t look good. I used to be a relatively content bloke with many interests none of which hold any enjoyment any more. It`s not that I want to die but neither do I wish to continue living such a miserable tortured life.

      Of all the testing things that I`ve had to endure through my life such as the Cancer, parents passing, best friend`s suicide etc, the onset of tinnitus has been by far the worst of all. My heart goes out to anyone who has the misfortune to be blighted by this life ruining condition.
       
      • Hug Hug x 10
      • Optimistic Optimistic x 1
    2. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      I am sorry to hear of the difficulties that you are going through with tinnitus, Snowcat. I get the impression that you live in the UK? If this is correct then I advise you to return to your GP and ask for further help as you are having difficulty coping. It may be the case that the hospital you attend does not have someone that specialises in tinnitus management. Your Audiologist is trained in the field of audiology and I have every belief knows about the anatomy of the ear and auditory system. However, having an in-depth knowledge of tinnitus and how it affects a person's mental and emotional wellbeing is an entirely different kettle of fish.

      You need to see an Audiologist or Hearing Therapist that specialises in tinnitus and ideally they should have the condition, as many of them do that work with tinnitus patients. There is help available under the NHS even though you may have to travel to another healthcare trust it's worth it in my opinion. Please talk to your GP and see if you can get a referral to another hospital that may offer CBT, TRT, counselling, sound therapy etc. Please do not make any demands or mention the above therapies to your GP. Just try to be calm and see whether your doctor will make enquires to try and get you additional help.

      I wish you well.
      Michael
       
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    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Snowcat

      Snowcat Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      May 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Wow! Which part of my post did you think was particularly funny @PortugalTheMan?

      Thank you @Michael Leigh for your response. The Audiologist at the hospital seemed very knowledgeable and said she suffered from slight tinnitus herself but offered no further options other than to habituate. It may be worth seeing another GP and explain the problems I`m experiencing but all they`ve seemed to do is prescribe mind altering anti-depressants or offer synthetic sleep inducing medication. But some form of CBT or sound therapy training could help my perception of tinnitus and lessen its impact.

      Thanks for the hugs @MBH.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    4. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      Tinnitus is a very common condition that many people are able to habituate to. The fact that your Audiologist has mild tinnitus proves my point that she has no experience of how severe and debilitating tinnitus can be. Please talk to your GP about my suggestions.
       
    5. Mary97

      Mary97 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Accoustic trauma but diagnosed with otosclerosis
      Hi. My heart went out to you reading your post.

      I've been battling tinnitus and hyperacusis for 4 years and have been an anxious mess basically every minute of every day so I absolutely know how you feel.

      I haven't used any pharmaceuticals but I take about 20 supplements a day for mood, brain health, relaxation and general health and together they all definitely help me. There is a thread about various supplements, maybe see if any of it is of interest... or if you're interested I can give you my list. It's all trial and error though. High doses of Magnesium and Ginkgo biloba work miracles for me in helping me sleep, but really cause a tinnitus spike for some...

      I hope you find this forum is helpful for you.

      Oh and by the way... the audiologist I saw who said tinnitus isn't life threatening in a very blase way I wish could walk a mile in our shoes...
       
    6. aura

      aura Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Romania
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Stay strong. You are not alone.
       
      • Helpful Helpful x 1
    7. Peter61

      Peter61 Member

      Location:
      The Netherlands
      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2012
      Hi @Snowcat,

      We're all in the same boat here. I think a lot of how you deal with tinnitus has to do with mindset, with the way you perceive tinnitus. If you think in a negative way it will become a major unbearable disease that you just can't live with. But if you think positively, and seek distraction in doing things you love, tinnitus will become a minor discomfort. Don't try to fight it but make peace with it, accept it as a part of who you are. Take out the sting of negativity and you will see you can live with it, just like the rest of us. You can't change tinnitus, but you can change the way you look at it.
       
    8. yup

      yup Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      diving
      I contacted the British Tinnitus Association to find out which NHS trusts offer TRT but they were unable to tell me. I can't seem to find out on Google either. My GP was not helpful.

      Michael Leigh, is there a way of finding out where to get this treatment? It's been 3 years now and it's getting past the point of no return - am getting increasingly distressed as it seems to be getting worse, having now moved into my right ear also.

      Thanks.
       
    9. GeorgeLG
      Wishful

      GeorgeLG Member

      Location:
      USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2021
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Leaf blower, rock band, constr & comp shooting, chemo
      I am sorry for your suffering and I am glad that you are working to find relief.

      I care.

      Relief is possible at some level, there are numerous options.

      I cannot relate to your challenges with your healthcare system and cannot offer any help there but there are a number of therapies that might help you, some have already been mentioned. I find that not sleeping well makes mine worse as does anything irritating. Loud noises, aggressive and bad news, nasty people, coffee grinders, etc. I suggest that you make improving sleep a priority as well as avoiding any optional and anxiety inducing activities. Have you tried any masking sounds or relaxation sounds for sleep or when doing quiet activities? Best for me is an activity with just the right amount of background sounds, it melts away for a few hours which is a nice rest.

      Keep note of any foods that make it worse like caffeine and avoid them.

      As mentioned, some people get relief from supplementation through personal experimentation. Magnesium (high quality like citrate) is a simple start and may help your sleep. There are many threads here on this subject.

      There are various sound therapies to mask or help you habituate that seem to help some people.

      Much has been written about out attitude towards this problem, how we feel about it, how we focus on it. A poster in this thread mentioned this. It’s real, we are suffering but our emotions and as a result our internal chemistry and our attitude towards it has a role in how this affects us. My brother-in-law told me recently, "oh that, ya, I got it in the army 25 years ago, it went away." My first reaction was that lucky b&d* and that he had a mild case but then I started thinking, he says that about everything including a bowel perforation that nearly killed him or getting COVID-19. He plows through every challenge saying ya, that will go away, it’s no big deal. Lucky, resilient genes or does his attitude play a role? I am currently exploring this and wrote my current feelings about it in my introductory thread, I’ll give you a link below. In it is a video primer and two book references that may help you. CBT is conventional medicine doing a similar thing. There are many therapists with tinnitus that have experience helping people including the guy in the second book I referenced, he is in your region I believe. I think I paid $10 for that book as a kindle download from Amazon. It’s a quick read.

      Consider the placebo effect. Many people put a negative connotation on this but I find it fascinating and think that it gives us a glimpse into what is possible with our emotions and the mind body connection. I have read studies where the placebo group got more benefit than the group taking the drugs. I believe that this is because in some cases the toxicity and side effects from the drugs outweigh any potential benefits and that believing your Going to get better and having an improved outlook actually changes your body chemistry with other positive physical changes to help you heal.

      I do not like prescription drugs and have minimized their use my entire adult life but there is a time and a place. Given your level of suffering and exhaustion over this maybe some initial intervention to help sleep and turning down the anxiety over the whole thing while you explore your options.

      I know exhaustion from health problems. I have cancer that cannot be cured, lost my wife to cancer recently, have terrible joint pain and a jet engine running in my head but I had a pretty good afternoon yesterday building a new guitar in my workshop with the door open letting in ambient noises. I sleep pretty good with an air purifier near my bed making a sort of white noise and I feel better about my options since reading the books I mentioned. Ya this sucks and it’s a significant challenge but people get through stuff this rough all the time so why not us? We deserve to be loved, safe and happy.

      I believe that you can find relief. If you are good at self-help then read those books. If you do better with support, find an experienced practitioner that believes you can get better and that has helped people do just that. As to doctors that tell you to live with it, forgive them because they don’t know any better and then move on to someone who knows how to help you.

      My story and those books:

      My Story So Far — Tinnitus from Leaf Blower Incident After Years of Rock Guitar Playing

      You can get better, I really believe that.

      P.S.

      Oh I forgot to mention that salt is the devil. A high salt meal gives me a major flare up so I keep intake low.

      George
       
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    10. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      Hi @yup.

      I don't know how you can find out which NHS trust will provide TRT. I suggest that you talk to your doctor about your tinnitus and explain the difficulties you are having with it. Ask to please be referred to ENT for tests. After this has been carried out hopefully you will be referred to Audiology. My advice is to accept whatever treatment they suggest.

      If I were you, I wouldn't mention TRT or CBT.

      Best of luck,
      Michael
       
      • Like Like x 1
    11. Wrfortiscue
      Cowabunga

      Wrfortiscue Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      1999
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Trauma
      Why not?
       
    12. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      The NHS is not a private healthcare system. I have had good treatment under it for 25 years with my tinnitus and I'm still an outpatient. My advice to @yup is talk to her doctor about the difficulties she is going through with tinnitus and not ask for certain treatments. Let the GP make a referral to see an ENT consultant, who will decide on the best course of treatment and whether a referral to Audiology is necessary.

      This is the correct way to do things when seeking help under the NHS. I have known some people making demands for certain treatments and telling doctors how to do their job. Not just in the UK but abroad too. This often rubs a doctor up the wrong way and will not help your cause.

      Michael
       
      • Like Like x 1
    13. Wrfortiscue
      Cowabunga

      Wrfortiscue Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      1999
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Trauma
      That makes sense. Thanks.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    14. GeorgeLG
      Wishful

      GeorgeLG Member

      Location:
      USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2021
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Leaf blower, rock band, constr & comp shooting, chemo
      I have also had this experience in the US. Going in guns a blazin’ with a set of demands can go sideways with some doctors.

      Eventually nudging in a certain direction in the form of a question usually works better. My normal head on, let’s get this done style is less effective with doctors.

      George
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    15. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      A bolshie know it all attitude towards a doctor will get a person absolutely nowhere. I have never had a problem with a GP. I have a very good rapport with my ENT consultant. She helped me a lot when I was going through a very difficult 4 years, caused by a second noise trauma.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    16. yup

      yup Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      diving
      I have already seen an ENT in Brighton and had tests. Nothing found. The ENT just gave me a BTA leaflet and that was it. That happened about 3.5 years ago. I am now off work due to the tinnitus and have had to leave home and move in with my parents who are trying hard to support me mentally. My GP knows nothing about the condition and would be happy to refer me anywhere where I can get TRT on the NHS. The problem is no one knows where I can get TRT - not even BTA.

      So, my question is, does anyone know where I can get TRT on the NHS in the UK?
       
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