Tinnitus Worse After Listening to Boyfriend's Band Practicing Music: Looking for Support

Discussion in 'Support' started by katri, Dec 16, 2020.

    1. katri
      Curious

      katri Member

      Location:
      Las Vegas
      Tinnitus Since:
      Jan 2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise
      Hey, it’s been a long time since I’ve talked to any of you. I’m not sure if you even really remember me because it’s been so long. I’m just wondering how you’re dealing and coping with things?

      I’m looking at a possible major increase in my tinnitus because I didn’t want to embarrass my boyfriend in front of his family or his friends (he’s in a band). They were practicing music and the whole house was probably shaking. After an hour I got to get out but I’m scared the damage is already done.

      I’m doing my best not to cry or get myself in a rut. I’m in search of positivity and friendship. Realistically, I’m not the first, only, or last person to go through this.

      Can you help me create an action plan to help myself and others on Tinnitus Talk?

      I’d also love to hear from @coffee_girl, @Jack Straw, @Hazel and others. I’m nowhere close to giving up on anything and I’d appreciate it if people avoided leaving disparaging comments. It’s nice to see all of you again although I wish it were under better circumstances. I’ve got tons of great life news as well I’d love to share of course!
       
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    2. Hazel
      Dreaming

      Hazel Director Staff Podcast Patron Benefactor Hall of Fame Advocate

      Location:
      the Netherlands
      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      one-sided hearing loss (of unknown origin)
      Hi there, it is good to see you back, though sad to hear why :(

      You could try to get Prednisone, if the damage is still relatively recent. It might be worth in any case to get your hearing checked.

      We often hear, when people experience a worsening from noise trauma, that the tinnitus does settle down again over time. Hopefully it will be like that for you!

      In the meantime, well, you've been through this before and you know from experience that you can get through it. It's not easy, but try to be kind and patient with yourself.

      I hope that in spite of everything you'll manage to have a nice Christmas!
       
      • Like Like x 3
    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      katri
      Curious

      katri Member

      Location:
      Las Vegas
      Tinnitus Since:
      Jan 2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise
      @Hazel thank you very much! I'm determined to stay positive this time around and to do my absolute best. The last time I posted here I was in a terrible place but I've grown substantially since then. I'm currently doing really good in school and I've gotten engaged (which feels weird to say). I always made fun of people for getting married at a young age, yet here I am. I can't imagine my life without the people I have around me now and I'm not ready to give it up. I hope you're doing well and you're in good health ;)
       
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    4. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      I am sorry to hear about the increase in your tinnitus and would like to give you some advice. If you follow it I think it will help with your recovery.

      The type of tinnitus you have is "noise induced" which is one of the most common types of this condition. Many people in this forum have this and to prevent it getting worse after a person habituates, there are certain things one needs to do. The first is not to use headphones, earbuds or headset even at low volume, because these devices increase the risk of the tinnitus becoming worse. Some people with noise induced tinnitus use headphones without any problems, but the risk of the tinnitus increasing is always there. Please keep in mind, the tinnitus only has to spike and it might not reduce to it's previous level. Sorry to sound so sobering but this is the reality of the matter. If you use any type of headphones even at low volume you risk your tinnitus becoming worse.

      The second thing you have sadly discovered. You have to be careful of being around loud sounds even when wearing hearing protection. Normal everyday sounds are usually fine but overly loud music, whether through speakers, concerts, clubs isn't. Some people think they are safe wearing earplugs unfortunately this isn't true. The reason being, if external sound is too loud it will pass through the head/skull and be transferred to the inner ear by bone conduction and spike the tinnitus.

      If you follow these guidelines then your tinnitus will usually remain at a stable and manageable level. When noise induced tinnitus increases after a person habituates, the main causes are headphone, earbud use and exposure to overly loud sounds.

      Please go to my "started threads" and read my posts: Tinnitus, A Personal View, Hyperacusis, As I see it, that I think you will find helpful. There are other posts too.

      Hopefully in time the tinnitus will reduce.

      I wish you well.
      Michael
       
    5. CB7x

      CB7x Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      As Hazel mentions it could be worth trying Prednisone if this was recent.

      When my trauma occurred it was at the worst of the draconian government response to coronavirus, there was no way to get Prednisone through normal methods or through the gray market so that was off the table. Looking back, I would have tried harder while some of the damage might have been repairable. I would have traveled as far as I needed to and tried in states with less draconian policies.

      Prior to my trauma this year I had much more mild tinnitus that I often didn't notice or only spiked briefly after being in a loud environment. After several incidents with loud noise this year I developed significantly worse tinnitus as well as hyperacusis. Both have improved 7-8 months later now, but it was a very rough period for me where I could barely function at work. I listen to notched music regularly, and I think vitamin B supplements have helped, though it's probably mostly acclimating. I try not to mask my tinnitus all the time, though I do when I sleep (with notched background sounds at low enough volume to still hear the tinnitus over it slightly). Currently I subscribe to the school of thought to acclimate so I can get on with my life, rather than mask it as much as possible to avoid my new reality.

      Protecting your hearing is important. Get some plugs for whenever you may encounter dangerously loud volume. If you find yourself somewhere too loud there is no shame putting your fingers in your ears and getting out of there, and if you want to return put your plugs in and do so. I never knew how many choices in noise reducing plugs there were, different filters that reduce decibels varying amounts and maintain sound quality. There is a plug for every loud situation, get some that fit well, are comfortable, and suitable for the decibels you can expect to encounter. If you plan to continue to be present for live music with your boyfriend, wear them every time. My life got much easier when I explained my condition to my wife as she is supportive and understanding.

      Congratulations on doing well in school and the upcoming marriage! You've got a lot to look forward to and no matter how bad it can seem at times, it will get better.
       
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    6. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      katri
      Curious

      katri Member

      Location:
      Las Vegas
      Tinnitus Since:
      Jan 2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise
      Thank you for responding! I never planned on being there and I couldn’t excuse myself from his house because his family primarily speaks Spanish. I felt that would’ve been too rude so I didn’t although I wish I did.
       
    7. Tanni
      Provocative

      Tanni Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      October 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ???
      Hi Katri,

      Congratulations on your engagement.

      I feel your pain when it comes to balancing looking after your ears with wanting to be polite. I went to a friend's wedding (with earplugs) and spent a little too much time by the band because I wanted to dance with my friends and be 'normal'.

      I had a horrendous spike as a result - the loudest I've ever heard it be. It took quite a few days to come back down again. But it did go back down.

      These things happen and they're perfectly understandable so don't be hard on yourself. Have your partner explain your situation to his family, so they will know next time that you are not being rude. Speak with your doctor about Prednisone, as others have suggested, but otherwise give your ears a rest and I'm sure they'll go down again soon.
       
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    8. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      katri
      Curious

      katri Member

      Location:
      Las Vegas
      Tinnitus Since:
      Jan 2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise
      Hey I wanted to talk to you. It seems like my tinnitus keeps getting worse by the hour and I’m not sure why.

      My brain is literally screaming at me and I’m unsure of what to do about it.

      Is this normal after some trauma?

      I’m fine for awhile, then I’ll feel a bang in my ear, it’ll be soft for some time, then it’ll increase dramatically.
       
    9. B18c1vtech

      B18c1vtech Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Head Trauma??, poor diet, sleep, stress, etc..
      Try taking some NAC, and Nicotinamide Riboside. They both can be found at any supplement store. May help reduce oxidative stress which might help your hearing heal.

      But really, try not to worry. The brain has a massive effect on tinnitus, both its loudness, and intensity. The auditory system likes to crank up the volume when your brain is in fight or flight mode. You just need to train your brain to get out of this cycle. It's difficult, but it will come with time. You'll be fine.
       
    10. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      You have had tinnitus since 2015. I read some of your early posts to this forum and note that you did learn to habituate and able to carry on with your life doing everything that you wanted to do which is good. The fact that your noise induced tinnitus has increased and experiencing the things you describe in your post, is the result of exposure to loud sound. There could be one or multiple of sound sources responsible for this.

      You said that you were in a house, the music was so loud it felt like the whole place was shaking? This type of excessive loud noise is not good for people with Noise induced tinnitus, as there's a risk of making it worse. So in answer to your question: Is this normal after noise trauma? I don't say it's normal because we are all different and no two people will experience tinnitus the same. However, your symptoms are indicative of exposure to loud noise/trauma. Before the new increase in your tinnitus, if you regularly used headphones, earbuds, or went to venues where loud music was played, then it was only a matter of time before your tinnitus was going to increase.

      Sorry to sound so sobering but unfortunately, after a person habituates to noise induced tinnitus, they need to careful of being exposed to loud sounds and don't put trust in earplugs and think they will be safe. This is not true, as loud sound can pass through the head and transfer to the inner ear by bone conduction, and spike the tinnitus. Neither do I recommend they listen to music through headphones, earbuds even at low volume or use a headset, as there's a risk the tinnitus will increase. This may not happen immediately and may go unnoticed for a while especially if one has habituated. Gradually, as the person continues these practices there's a real risk of the tinnitus becoming worse to the point it cannot easily be ignored as before.

      Give it time and hopefully your tinnitus will calm down and eventually settle. Please follow my suggestions and don't use headphones, earbuds or listen to very loud music. I think it's best you return to basics. As you are experienced in tinnitus and previously habituated you shouldn't find this difficult.

      Please go to my "Started Threads". Take your time and read the following posts: New to tinnitus what to do? Tinnitus, A Personal View, Hyperacusis, As I see it. The Habituation process. Tinnitus and the Negative mindset. Acquiring a positive mindset. Will my tinnitus get worse?

      If you are able to see an Audiologist that practices tinnitus and hyperacusis treatment & management, then I suggest you do so.

      All the best
      Michael
       
    11. GBB

      GBB Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      NYC
      Tinnitus Since:
      2016-2019 (Mild, Cured) 8/2020 (Severe)
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Virus / Microsuction / Acoustic Trauma
      Might be worth leaning on some benzos as needed for a bit - if you assume it's a temporary spike - and let's assume that - then using meds to get through the worst days is just logical, to me anyway.
       
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    12. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      katri
      Curious

      katri Member

      Location:
      Las Vegas
      Tinnitus Since:
      Jan 2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise
      Thank you. I’m terrified of everything right now. Can’t move. Barely eat. I really just exist if that really. These increases are sooooo loud I want to die sometimes. I’m trying my best but it’s hard not to withdraw into my shell because I don’t know what’s going to happen next. Too many questions are swirling around my head and it hurts. I’m in so much mental, physical, emotional anguish that I haven’t been able to get out of bed even though lying in bed has done nothing for me.
       
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    13. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      katri
      Curious

      katri Member

      Location:
      Las Vegas
      Tinnitus Since:
      Jan 2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise
      I appreciate what you’re saying and I’m dedicated to fighting through everything but how can you be so sure??

      It’s worsening at such a fast rate I’m beginning to doubt it will ever stop. I hate myself for even visiting him because I didn’t want to. Now I’m paying for it heavily and I’m not mentally equipped to do that. Physically either. Mild, moderate tinnitus is a walk in the park compared to screaming in your ears 24/7. It’s hard to imagine having a life or wanting to life when they refuse to let up. I pretty much survive off of taking as much Melatonin as I can and praying a pass out mid step but my tinnitus keeps waking me up due to the regular increases. I feel like I’ll never get better or complete my life goals. I don’t even know the point of life anymore and I’m having a major faith crisis that reminds me every day that I don’t know what to believe. Or do. I’m only 20 and I’ve never actually lived my life. Now it feels like it’s been snatched from me and I’m dealing with an unrelenting illness that could become terminal. I know everyone says to wait but I’m not improving at all after 2 weeks. I’m having the worst day ever back to back to back. Even hour by hour. I just want to relax and think about how I’m wrong and it’s not the end of the world. People with mild tinnitus are so lucky and they don’t even know it.
       
      • Hug Hug x 3
    14. GBB

      GBB Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      NYC
      Tinnitus Since:
      2016-2019 (Mild, Cured) 8/2020 (Severe)
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Virus / Microsuction / Acoustic Trauma
      I understand what you are going through - my tinnitus has generally decreased from that level but it took around 5 months. I'll just reiterate benzos helped drop the volume temporarily for me, and may help you as well.
       
    15. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      katri
      Curious

      katri Member

      Location:
      Las Vegas
      Tinnitus Since:
      Jan 2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise
      Yea I also read that they can make it a bit worse. That’s worrisome for me because I’m studying to become an accountant. A major mishap like that could cost me my entire academic career or my scholarships. Not sure how to completely organically cope with things but I’ll try being positive. I’m going to have a serious discussion with my family about it.
       
    16. Ken219
      Frustrated

      Ken219 Member

      Location:
      New York Area
      Tinnitus Since:
      Summer of 1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise exposure?
      Sad but true.

      Source Cooper Safety Supply:

      'Noise exposure is 100 dB and you are wearing earplugs with an NRR 33dB, your level of exposure would not be reduced to 67 dB. Instead, to determine the actual amount of decibel deduction applied (when decibels are measured dBA which is the most common), you take the NRR number (in dB), subtract seven, and then divide by two. Given the previous example, your noise reduction equation would look like the following: (33-7)/2 = 13.

      This means that if you are at a rock concert with a level of noise exposure at 100 dB and you are wearing a hearing protector with an NRR 33 dB, your new level of noise exposure is 87 dB. If you are wearing a product with an NRR of 27 it would deduct 10 decibels (27-7/2=10).'​
       
    17. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      Some people are not aware, even wearing the most high spec hearing protection doesn't mean they are completely safe. If external sound is loud enough, it will pass through the skull/head and transfer to the inner ear by bone conduction and spike the tinnitus. If the person is fortunate the tinnitus will reduce to its previous baseline level. Unfortunately if this doesn't happen, they might find the tinnitus increases to a new permanent level.

      Michael
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    18. Mister Muso
      No Mood

      Mister Muso Member

      Location:
      Scotland
      Tinnitus Since:
      2007 / April 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music
      I've seen this formula quoted before but I've never seen the science behind it actually explained. I.e. why the choice of those numbers and why can't you just go by the NRR figures on the product?
       
    19. iGL0CK
      Thinking

      iGL0CK Member

      Location:
      Poland
      Tinnitus Since:
      09/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma (punk rock show)
      Ear protectors are tested in a very specific environments so NRR doesn't work as good in real life as in testing. So it's good to 'correct' this NRR measure.

      This (-7) is to check dbA (mid-range frequencies). If you want to check the protection for dbC (low and high frequencies) you could just divide NRR by 2.

      There is another theory about checking real level of protection from National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH):
      1. Earmuffs: Subtract the NRR by 0.25
      2. Formable earplugs: Subtract the NRR by 0.5
      3. All other earplugs: Subtract the NRR by 0.7
      Level of protection provided by earmufss looks really bad in this theory hovewer..
       
      • Informative Informative x 1
    20. kingsfan
      Mellow

      kingsfan Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Southern California
      Tinnitus Since:
      9-17-20 / 10-20-20 / 3-31-21 / 5-23-21
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      turning everything up to 11
      I don't quite understand the language of "subtract the NRR by x." Does this mean subtract, say, 0.5 from the NRR rating from earplugs? Eg. 32NRR - 0.5 = actual dB of noise reduction?

      The Cooper website is the only place I've ever seen it suggested we divide the NRR in half after subtracting 7.

      NIOSH simply advises to subtract 7 from the NRR, but that's to deal with improper fitting of earplugs.

      If you have custom molded or you insert foam plugs until you can barely grab them then you should be good with simply the NRR rating.
       
    21. DebInAustralia
      No Mood

      DebInAustralia Member Benefactor Advocate

      Location:
      Geelong, Victoria
      Tinnitus Since:
      30/12/13
      Can you toss Nicotinamide Riboside at it?
       
    22. Kriszti

      Kriszti Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      2016/2017/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Found this on the OSHA website, but to be honest, probably partly due to language barrier, I don't understand it entirely.

      "The 50% safety factor adjusts labeled NRR values for workplace conditions and is used when considering whether engineering controls are to be implemented.

      Estimated dBA exposure = 98 dBA - [(25-7) × 50%] = 89 dBA

      However, when assessing the adequacy of the hearing protection for hearing conservation (HC) purposes, CSHOs should only subtract 7dB from the NRR.

      Exposure for PPE/ HC enforcement = 98 dBA - (25-7) = 80 dBA"

      https://www.osha.gov/dts/osta/otm/new_noise/#appendixe
       
    23. SB1981

      SB1981 Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Multifactorial
      I believe this is what this means:

      The first calculation determines if methods that are built into the design of a plant, equipment or process to minimize the hazard are needed.

      For example, this machine is way too loud for the amount time weighted exposure employees are needed for so we have to improve its noise output in order to meet regulations that satisfy production goals.

      https://www.ccohs.ca/oshanswers/hsprograms/hazard_control.html

      The second calculation determines if they have to set up a hearing conservation program where they do audiometry at certain intervals for employees to monitor hearing loss.

      So if wearing the hearing protection at that calculation gets you to the 80dBA then no conservation program is required because the threshold for the program is 85dBA.

      https://www.osha.gov/laws-regs/regulations/standardnumber/1910/1910.95

      So different measures for different types of compliance to OSHA guidelines.

      Any other insight to clarify definitely welcomed. This is my interpretation.
       
    24. Ken219
      Frustrated

      Ken219 Member

      Location:
      New York Area
      Tinnitus Since:
      Summer of 1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise exposure?
      I believe it is a marketing ploy. Optimum use in testing your NRR may vary. Very misleading but they get away with it. Look this one has NRR 30, better than the NRR 25, I'll buy the 30.
       
    25. Psych
      Wishful

      Psych Member Podcast Patron Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      Many moons...
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      I'm so sorry you're having such a hard time. I can understand the "trying to be polite" business, as I did that at church the other day for a complete stranger! He was going to play the bagpipes on stage, and I was very worried and was looking for my ear plugs in my purse. He started playing the smaller of the two bagpipes, and it wasn't that big of a deal, so I was like "Whew!" Then he picked up the big one and it was extremely loud! I frantically pawed through my purse, as I try to make an effort to always keep some in there, and was not finding them. I thought, "Well, I can't just walk out, or everyone will be embarrassed for him, and it might hurt his feelings." So I just sat there and smiled through gritted teeth!

      At any rate, I hope you're doing better. I'm having a hugely loud spike today, more on the right side than the left, which makes it worse, because it's more noticeable than if it were evenly distributed. It's just so terrible, and, of course, it's New Year's Eve, when I'm trying to make merry and keep it light! But I did want to stop by and see how you were doing. I hope both of us will have some attenuation sooner rather than later, and here's to a much better next year than last year! :huganimation:
       
      • Hug Hug x 1
    26. BobDigi
      Kick ass

      BobDigi Member

      Location:
      UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      5.6.14
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise
      Bagpipes are a horrible instrument and sound horrible. But that's another point. In future be rude and selfish if neccesary. He won't be the one listening to your tinnitus, so look after your ears and not his ego.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    27. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      katri
      Curious

      katri Member

      Location:
      Las Vegas
      Tinnitus Since:
      Jan 2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise
      I honestly don’t know if I’m getting better. My tinnitus has been relatively soft for the last 4 days but there’s something that makes me feel weird about it. I find my ears hard to trust after everything they’ve put me through.

      I’m at least grateful to sleep and night but dealing with hourly increases and then a lot less takes a toll mentally. Sometimes my ears will sound soft but when I plug them up, it’ll be considerably louder. At times it’s almost the same as how it was when it was severe. I’m honestly praying this is a good sign but every part of me is rejecting it. It’s been nearly 3 weeks since my initial acoustic trauma.

      The worst part is being able to function and feel normal and knowing that if things take a turn for the worst it’d all be stripped from me.

      Has softer tinnitus ever been a bad sign? When can I expect this to clear up?
       
      • Hug Hug x 1
    28. ajc

      ajc Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2002; spike 2009; worse 2017-18
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music - noise damage
      What is wrong with you :D

      It gets worse - you are worried.
      It gets better, softer - you are worried.

      No, tinnitus getting softer is NEVER a bad sign. You are on your way to recovery.
       
    29. Kriszti

      Kriszti Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      2016/2017/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      This is absolutely a good sign that your tinnitus is getting softer, although I understand your fears that you are not out of the woods and it can turn on a dime. Don't worry about that it gets louder when you plug up, that's "normal", outer sound don't mask your tinnitus with ear plugs, it's not louder, but you perceive it louder.

      I know it's much easier to give advice than live it trough, I easily get down and desperate too, but try to give it time, pay attention to the longer trends and not to the daily fluctuations.

      And if you can sleep, that's also great, helps your brain to calm down a bit.
       
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    30. Psych
      Wishful

      Psych Member Podcast Patron Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      Many moons...
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      I'm not an expert, but I don't think softer tinnitus would ever be a bad sign. But I completely understand what you're saying about the ups and downs being wearing. If life would just pick a lane, I could probably get used to it! :cool:
       
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