What Reduced My Tinnitus

Discussion in 'Support' started by WorstThingEver, Sep 26, 2013.

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    1. WorstThingEver

      WorstThingEver Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2005
      Right now I'd prefer to never think about tinnitus again, but before I (hopefully) put this in the rear-view mirror wanted to share this for others desperately searching for info online what worked for me.

      -- Kevin Hogan's book 'turning the volume down.' I'm not a shill, he's got this expensive box set of stuff on his web site. Don't know if you need that, but the cheap book really helped b/c it shifted my perspective. As intensely physical as T is, the problem for a lot of people -- and me anyway -- is that it's severely connected to stress, your focus and emotions. In a nutshell, his theory: SPADE (stress, panic, anxiety, depression, and emotional illness) doesn't CAUSE T but it does foster an environment where it can start (spurred by noise, drugs, whatever) and helps keep it going after it should, in theory, have passed. after all, many many people with severe hearing loss dont have T. it's usually a brain thing. You have to rigorously retrain your brain to ignore and quit giving you this useless information (the ringing), and that takes some real work.

      -- So: I got back on an anti-depressant plus started taking a bit of xanax in the evenings. Calming down didn't reduce the tinnitus -- at first -- but gradually I began to see a big difference. Basically hogan argues you gotta treat the depression and stop paying attention to the T in order to even have a chance of stopping it. tough, i know. Also: One of the ways you can most easily tell if you're treatable, he says, is if the T fluctuates in volume and or tone.

      -- Cardio exercise every day (i swam laps at gym). it makes you feel better. and anything that makes you feel better is important.

      -- Stress-reducing Yoga in the mornings (rodney yee videos on laptop via itunes)

      -- I tried a hypnosis thing i found on youtube for ignoring tinnitus. not sure if that did anything, but i'm including it here because i want to include everything i did in case i'm mistaken about what got me better.

      -- Tried supplements -- Ginkgo, Magnesium, Vinpocetine, melatonin, and Bioflavoidnoids. I can't say for sure none of them worked, maybe one or two "kicked in" but i suspect that isn't the case because this was first thing i tried and i didn't notice any difference until starting the other things. Btw, the only one my ear doctor recommended was the bioflavinoids.

      -- Stopped "checking" my T, tried to keep myself constantly distracted and not think about it.

      -- Sound-rich environment. Never be in a silent room when you have T. no ear plugs. This is key, but there's a right way and wrong way to do it. simply masking the T is fine if you just need to get it off your mind. but ideally, it seems, you should listen to **music you really like just below the volume of your T** ... that helps make your brain strain to hear the "good" noise and learn to ignore the "annoying" noise. I created a playlist of a couple hundred movie soundtrack tracks in Spotify and had that playing at low volume while i worked. at night, i downloaded from itunes "7 hours relaxing nature sounds" -- a pretty great collection of 6 minute tracks of various nature sounds. After deleting some of the annoying ones, i stopped having my ceiling fan on at night and instead had this on at a low volume, just barely able to hear it -- the very first morning after doing this i woke up and instead of the usual raging head noise, it was reduced. again, it's not having a white noise boring masking sound, but rather something that's pleasant that your brain would rather hear than T.

      anyway. that's it. right now my T is still slightly there, but barely noticeable. obviously this won't work for everybody. and for a while i was super frustrated bc i felt like i was doing everything and nothing was helping, so if you do try this, hang with it for a while. i was pretty amazed at what a difference this eventually made. i figure if it only helps one person, im glad i posted it.
       
      • Like Like x 8
    2. TJPositive
      Fine

      TJPositive Member

      Location:
      Australia
      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      Thanks for the tips. I can vouch for the 'music playing below the sound of your T'. I've never liked anything too loud so I've always had music on the down low, just enough to hear clearly and pleasantly. You've just brought to my attention that it may be because of this that having my iPod on next to me at a lower volume seems to help me so much.
       
    3. LadyDi
      Busy

      LadyDi Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Florida, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Barotrauma/airplane
      Good post. One question: you still on the anti-Ds and Xanax?
       
    4. Leah

      Leah Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Chardon, Ohio USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Will look into everything you posted thanks so much. Mine is so loud, it never requires "checking". Anyone else?
       
    5. TJPositive
      Fine

      TJPositive Member

      Location:
      Australia
      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      I feel terrible about your situation Leah, I've seen a a few of your posts and it's clear you're really having a tough time dealing with it. I can only sympathize, as I don't think my T comes close to yours. Mine only seems loud in a near silent environment. With some music playing, I am usually able to forget about it for periods of time though I do struggle with the habit of reminding myself about it since it's been on my mind a lot lately. The worst of T comes from the negative psychological response we have to the intrusive noise I feel. It's completely understandable of course, but that's really something we all need to work on. Just accepting it, as hard as that may be for some of us.
       
    6. Leah

      Leah Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Chardon, Ohio USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Yes, this is controlling my life. Need to follow the good advice and get back to life.
       
    7. TJPositive
      Fine

      TJPositive Member

      Location:
      Australia
      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      It'll definitely be a challenge, though I think if we're persistent we'll be able to manage.

      You know what bothers me most about the controlling grip T can have on us; it's the little things. Which I guess all together make a big thing, but for instance if I want to sit down and use the computer, I sometimes find it difficult to do so without some music going so I am forced to turn my iPod on. Not that it's a negative thing, it's just I don't have say over the matter, the T makes the decision for me, and I hate that regardless of the matter at hand.

      I don't like being negative but I had to get that out. (n)
       
      • Like Like x 1
    8. LadyDi
      Busy

      LadyDi Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Florida, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Barotrauma/airplane
      I never need to check mine, although the volume varies. But I am rarely not conscious of it. My audiologist said my volume was loud but maskable. Also high pitched. And yes, that all adds up to a lot of anxiety.
       
    9. Leah

      Leah Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Chardon, Ohio USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Thanks Lady Di, have to get a grip on the anxiety.
       
    10. Tamalak
      Volatile

      Tamalak Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      3/2011
      Does this actually affect the objective volume of your T WHEN YOU LISTEN FOR IT or is it just less noticable because you're healthier/happier in other ways and you're distracting yourself more effectively?

      I am not saying those shouldn't be goals, I am just sick of people saying "my T got better" when they really mean "my life got better" and they are trying to convince themselves it affected their T.
       
    11. Per

      Per Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      We are in the same boat. I can't really mask it with music or sounds cause I'm afraid I will get a hearing loss in the process of masking. I really need to turn the volume UP and even then it doesn't mask my T - it only becomes an added noise, but sometimes thats needed cause I'm so sick of my high pitched constant tone. It can only get lower for us, we need to grasp onto hope. However, on rare occasions my T volume goes down for a short while, normally after taking benzos like Xanor/Xanax or sleep medication. How about you? I believe our auditory cortex is so switched on that we need a "slam" to the brain to achieve some sort of rest.
       
    12. Per

      Per Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      I don't believe there's really a difference between start or cause. Somatic T is real. Or else everyone with T would have a severe hearing loss or experienced acoustic trauma, but it's not like that. The cause list is long and stress can absolutely be one of the causes I believe, it can for many be the only too and stress can obviously also fuel any existing T. Thanks for the book tip!
       
    13. TJPositive
      Fine

      TJPositive Member

      Location:
      Australia
      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
      @Tamalak

      I think that depends on the person really, but for most people it's our reaction to the noise that changes, not the noise itself. And by that we're therefore less stressed and the noise is much less often a tormenting intrusion.

      This will probably be hard to understand if you haven't experienced it for yourself.
       
    14. Tamalak
      Volatile

      Tamalak Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      3/2011
      I have experienced it for myself. I notice my T is less noticeable when I'm socializing, for example. It's no less loud, but it doesn't bother me, because certain mental energies are engaged that keep me from listening to it. On top of that, when I'm eating well and exercising, it also feels much more manageable than when I'm not.

      But all life problems work like this. Misery is paler and less strong when it's isolated and surrounded by better things. Misery is strengthened when it's linked to and experienced alongside other miseries. BUT THIS IS NOT THE SAME AS A CURE. Nobody says "Monopoly cured my arthritis!" if you're having so much fun playing Monopoly you forget about it for a while. Nobody prescribes Monopoly for arthritis, nobody would credit a doctor for curing their arthritis if they DID perscribe it, because you DIDN'T FIX THE PROBLEM, you just made me forget about it for a while.
       
    15. carlover
      English

      carlover Member Benefactor

      Location:
      London
      Tinnitus Since:
      1986
      ...but if you have high freq hearing loss that looks like a ski slope on a graph than you are physically stuffed with T,no amount of stress release etc is going to do it,thats the way it is.
       
    16. AnneG
      Cheerful

      AnneG Member

      Location:
      Philippines
      Tinnitus Since:
      09/13
      You perfectly described my T! I mean the whistling i hear isn't always there, it FLACTUATES! That's the word. I'm looking for, its never at the same volume and tone! I should try what you did! i suddenly felt Hope!
       

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