Very High-Pitched, Constantly Varying Tinnitus Tone — Destroying Music

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by Howard UK, Sep 23, 2021.

    1. Howard UK

      Howard UK Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2002
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Hello. My name is Howard - just joined and would like to ask for some advice if I may?

      I’ve had tinnitus since 2001. Mostly this is a constant tone in both ears, not too high pitch, not too low pitch – just always present. Because of that I’ve learned to live with it.

      However, a couple of years ago a new tinnitus sound appeared which I perceive to be only in one ear.

      It’s really disturbing as it’s very high pitch and constantly varying – it’s always there

      Worst of all is that it’s ruining music. I’m not too sure how to describe it but the new high pitch tinnitus makes musical notes disintegrate.

      I only listen at very moderate levels. When wearing headphones it happens at even very quiet listening levels.

      However, if I do turn-up the volume, this new tinnitus gets louder as well; something which didn’t happen with the old tinnitus; so I can’t drown it out.

      I recently had a hearing test, and this showed my hearing was “normal”.

      I have a couple of questions:

      1) In terms of possible causes, around the same time I had taken to wearing ear defenders in the office. I did this because I could not concentrate when there were loud conversations taking place around me. Could that have caused it?

      2) Has anyone had/got a similar type of high-pitch/varying tinnitus and experience how it destroys music – do you have any suggestions for cures?

      Thanks very much,
      Howard
       
    2. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

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

      Headphones are a common cause of tinnitus, because people do not realize they are listening to audio at too high a volume and for long durations. Please read my post to @ConfusedRicky. Click on the links and read the articles.

      Your oversensitivity to sound could indicate that you have hyperacusis, which is another indication of noise induced tinnitus. Please go to my started threads and read my post: Hyperacusis, As I See It.

      Take care,
      Michael
       
    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Howard UK

      Howard UK Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2002
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Hello @Michael Leigh.

      Thanks very much for your reply and your linked posts.

      I’m engaged with an NHS audiologist – who performed my hearing test. She has suggested that I do indeed have hyperacusis as well as the tinnitus. Her suggested therapy is to:

      1) Read this article by Jonathan Hazell: http://www.tinnitus.org/Handout 4_sound enrich_oct 2002.pdf

      2) Start using the ReSound Relief app for Environmental Sound Enrichment.

      Our next appointment is in 7 months. If there’s no improvement in that time I may be referred (again) for an MRI scan – the first referral was rejected.

      You say to stop listening to music via headphones and, since reading that, I have now stopped – thank you for that advice.

      Is it OK to use headphones when listening to the ReSound App, or should I not use headphones/headset at all, for any reason, even things like video calls?

      Am I correct to say I should be listening to the App as many hours as I can, day and night?

      Thanks again,
      Howard
       
    4. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

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

      You have had tinnitus for quite a while which is usually ample time to habituate to it. Although it's mentioned on your profile cause of tinnitus unknown, more often than not something causes it. Reading your post my suspicions were immediately drawn to noise induced tinnitus because you are a regular user of headphones. These devices are a common cause of the condition.

      Since you have hyperacusis, it suggests to me the original cause of the tinnitus was noise induced. Many people habituate to this type of tinnitus within a short period of time. For some it can take up to 18 months and beyond. Some people may need to see an audiologist that specialises in tinnitus and hyperacusis treatment.

      I sense over the years you have managed to live with tinnitus without it intruding too much on your life. Neither has it put any restrictions on the things that you want to do. However, things have begun to change, as you are unable to enjoy listening to music through headphones like before.

      My advice is to stop using all types of headphones. This includes earbuds, AirPods and headsets. Don't even use them at low volume.

      Your audiologist might say using headphones and earbuds at low volume is perfectly okay but I am telling it's not. You are taking a risk using them even at low volume. Some audiologists and ENT doctors are not aware of this. They may be excellent health professionals in Audiology and Audiovestibular medicine. But understanding noise induced tinnitus and what can make it worse, is an entirely different matter.

      The advice your audiologist has given you is good. If the ReSound app is connected to a hearing aid(s) I think this will be ok but I don't recommend listening to it through headphones or earbuds even at low volume. I believe wearing white noise generators would be better for you. Please understand this is just my opinion. White noise generators are specialist devices and expensive. Not all NHS audiology departments supply them.

      All the best,
      Michael
       
    5. Peter Q

      Peter Q Member

      Location:
      Ireland
      Tinnitus Since:
      2009
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      @Howard UK, have you any idea as to what caused your tinnitus in 2002?
       
    6. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Howard UK

      Howard UK Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2002
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Hi @Peter Q, thanks for your reply. I've no idea what caused the 2002 tinnitus.

      The new tinnitus could be caused by many things, but I don't listen to much music through headphones, just spoken-word. It could have been that, or the ear-defender use that I mention above, or possibly Acoustic Neuroma - hopefully I can get to the root cause.
       
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