Why Do Some People Get Tinnitus and Others Don't?

Discussion in 'Support' started by seal, Oct 16, 2013.

tinnitus forum
    1. seal

      seal Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma
      I suffer from noise induced T from a concert ( rarely went to clubs,concerts,etc. before). Friends went with me and none of them developed T afterwards.
      And lately I've been wondering, how come that so many people go out every weekend to loud gigs and clubs all night, listen to their ipods on full volume and don't have Tinnitus? In your opinion, particularly with noise induced T, why do some people develop it from onetime events when others never experience T in their lives?
       
    2. erik
      Breezy

      erik Manager Staff Benefactor

      Location:
      Washington State, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/15/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Most likely hearing loss
      That is one of the great mysteries of T and life. Just like why do up to 30% of deaf people have T? And why do some people with severe hearing loss have no T? I have no measurable hearing loss, yet I have T!

      We may never know the answers to these questions. Our bodies are so similar yet so different. Some people are more susceptible to certain conditions than others. Heart disease runs in my family. Cancer does not. However, the opposite may be true of your family.
       
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    3. LadyDi
      Busy

      LadyDi Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Florida, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Barotrauma/airplane
      I think part of this puzzle also is due to the fact that tinnitus involves the brain, the most complicated and mysterious organ in our bodies, as much as it does the ears.

      We know that genetics can play a role in the development of Alzheimer's disease, a devastating neurological condition where plaques and tangles develop within the brain and cause cell death. Yet no one knows exactly what triggers this process to begin. They have done studies on identical twins, with the exact same genetic makeup. One twin will develop Alzheimer's in his 60s while the other may come down with the disorder in his 80s -- or never.

      I do think some things pre-dispose us to tinnitus -- just as some things, like repeated blunt trauma to the head, does for Alzheimers's. It seems T is more likely to come to people who naturally are anxious, or who were going through a very stressful period when their exposure happened. But that's just my opinion.
       
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    4. Relic Hunter
      Cynical

      Relic Hunter Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/1990
      If we knew the answer to why some people get tinnitus and others don't we would be well on the way to finding a cure. True according to data that about 90 percent of people, myself included, have hearing loss. However there
      are people here on this forum with completely normal hearing who have tinnitus.

      I know people in my family with far greater hearing loss than I do but no tinnitus. If we could obtain data I believe that the great majority of people with hearing loss do not have tinnitus at all.

      I cannot find my source now but remembering reading one time that just about all people who have tinnitus have a TYPE A personality. In the end when a cure comes it will be more the functioning of the brain itself than the mechanics of the ear.
       
    5. seal

      seal Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma
      very interesting thought!!
       
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    6. seal

      seal Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma
      What do you mean by TYPE A personality?
       
    7. Relic Hunter
      Cynical

      Relic Hunter Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/1990
      TYPE A personalities are high strung and TYPE B are the more laid back easy going type. However I think this is just a very generalization of the types.

      A far better explanation of the types can be found on the web than I can try and explain here.

      I do believe that stress plays a great part in the onslaught of T. The greatest number of people in one group with tinnitus that I know are veterans. My local VA hospital has about 800 and these are all managed by one very good doctor. He told me that in almost all cases these people were also undergoing stress. In the case of the military this is often referred to as POST TRAUMIC STRESS DISORDER. It does not matter if this stress is combat related or not. The psychological and chemical process going on in the brain is the same regardless of the source of the stress.

      In my own case I had moderate to severe hearing loss for years with T so mild I had to listen for it. It was a period of extreme stress that turned up the volume.
       
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    8. seal

      seal Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma
      Thank you! Yes, I just read about A and B Personalities... never heard of it before. I'm definitely Type A, I have to admit.
      Anyways, what you are saying totally makes sense to me... btw if you find the source, I would love to see it.
       
    9. insane_inspiration
      Inspired

      insane_inspiration Member Benefactor

      Location:
      India
      Tinnitus Since:
      09/2013
      Wonderful question! Uncertainty; most important part in our life. You never know what's going to happen to you, and what happens to you, may never happen to another and it usually doesn't! It's a miracle how a 65 year old person could have a very complicated heart surgery done, and live for an extra 20 years with no problems whatsoever, and a 20 year old person who merely got a teeth pulled out gets the T and has to suffer throughout his life. Same goes with everything in life. There's always pain & gain for different people. You can put two people under same conditions, and yet see varied results. It's the effect of our lifestyle.

      When we talk about noise induced tinnitus, it's a common misconception IMO that people think they got it ONLY because of a one time gig. Some cases, yes, it might be due to a one time clubbing where the music was too loud and it damaged the ears and caused T. But usually, I don't think that's the case. I've seen so many people who frequently go to clubs, who work at construction sites constantly exposed to loud sounds, etc. Many don't have T or hearing loss. Of course, they will have some problems in the future. But in your case, you mention you got T due to a concert. Yes, that could be the reason. Alternatively, you may be unaware that you had been exposed to loud sounds when you were a kid. Looking back at all the years, I now feel that there were too many reasons my ears could have been damaged(my ears don't have any damage right now, I'm just saying that many situations existed). People bursting firecrackers, friends at school shouting in the ears as a prank, the teacher yelling standing right next to me, truck horn being honked when I was next to it, etc. While these come off as normal scenarios, these often do cause problems. We may not notice anything significant, but all these add up and cause problems.

      Just a few days ago, I saw a man hold his daughter, probably a year old, and was talking to her sweetly. He then starts snapping his fingers and she starts laughing. He continues doing that and he starts snapping near her ears. He then starts making some weird squeaking sound to make her happy. He's holding her up and making that sound right next to her ears! That's when I realized not everything in your hands. That poor kid could have hearing problems right then! When she grows up, she'll never know what happened. She'll be told she was born that way and there was a problem with her hearing since birth.

      And finally, hereditary. Lots of problems are hereditary. You're born that way, there's just nothing you can do about it. It depends on your luck I guess. I've seen people with so many problems and others with absolutely no problem. It's really bad when we compare those two extremes. But anyway, I've also observed that if one lives a comfortable life initially, life always gets you in the end. One either starts living with small problems throughout their life, or they enjoy their life first, and get something big in the end. Some exceptions do exist.

      Like you, I wonder how people have their iPods at high volume and yet manage without any problems. But I tell ya, they're gonna get it someday soon. Right now it's all fine. In future, there's gonna be some or the other problem associated with it. It's just the way it is, you've got nothing that can be done. Everything has it's ups and downs. Me, I just can't lay off of McDonald's delicious burgers. I've reduced a lot though, I visit McD once in 2 months only. But I know very well that it's gonna affect me in future.

      Summing up everything, I mean to say that everyone gets some or the other problem in life. Those who don't, are extremely lucky! To each, their problem is usually the worst according to them. Us T sufferers sometimes think that having some other disease or disorder is better than living with a noise all the time. And people with those diseases think it's better to live with a sound than with a disease all day. One knows how it is only when they experience it. Life sure is weird! :rolleyes:
       
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    10. seal

      seal Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma
      That's right,I often see parents not protecting their childrens hearing... in fact I only once saw a mother covering her daughters ears when a loud ambulance went by and I can only remember Chris Martins daughter ( he has T himself) wearing ear defenders at one of his concerts.

      Another point is, here it's just not common to use earplugs when you go to loud events, gigs or clubbing, no one does it over here. When I went to the concert, I didn't even know that I could protect myself .. I know that sounds really stupid, but as no one ever told me to wear earplugs and no one I know does so,it just didn't come to my mind.
      I heard that in Sweden for example they hand out ear plugs at all concerts, so that's great...

      I think it strongly depends on the desease. Sure no one would want to have MS instead of Tinnitus, but I would prefer a lot of deseases over T, just because at least they are treatable in a way, when for us there is just nothing that makes it better.
       
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    11. Markku
      Inspired

      Markku Director Staff Benefactor Hall of Fame Team Trobalt Team Tech Team Awareness Team Research

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Syringing
      In Finland too they hand out ear plugs at all the (biggest ones, anyway) concerts. The smaller gigs, not so much.

      And I agree with @seal, there are diseases that I'd not choose over tinnitus for myself, like Parkinson's, ALS, and many other neurological diseases. I can't imagine being blind either. Blindness is probably one of the worst things I can think of.

      There are currently relatively few cures for ailments as a whole, that's good to remember. The medical field is advancing all the time, and a few generations after us they'll probably wonder how we ever could suffer from - in their opinion in the future - so trivial sounding things.

      I agree with Relic Hunter, it seems most of us on the forums seem to be of the Type A personality. We've discussed about the personality types and tinnitus previously here somewhere, and the consensus seemed to be that the large majority are Type As.
       
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    12. seal

      seal Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma
      That's great, seems like Scandinavia is advanced again ( did you know that over here we also think you have the best scolar system and childcare? )

      I couldn't agree more... blindness seems really really bad to me,too. and also being deaf would be horrible for me. especially if I still had T and could never mask it.
       
    13. Markku
      Inspired

      Markku Director Staff Benefactor Hall of Fame Team Trobalt Team Tech Team Awareness Team Research

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Syringing
      Yeah, we've done quite well on PISA and indeed have an education system known for its success. Childcare, I suppose, too.

      By the way, my mother teaches German, Swedish and English for the students in academic secondary school. I suppose that's the equivalent of the three years before German students in the Gymnasium take the Abitur exam. Finnish students take the matriculation examination (which is similar to Abitur I think).
       
    14. seal

      seal Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma
      Yes, here the last 2 years before the Abitur are called "Oberstufe", where students can choose different classes and the subjects they want to take exams in for the Abitur. So I think that's the equivalent!
       
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    15. yonkapin

      yonkapin Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Melbourne, Australia
      Tinnitus Since:
      March 2012
      This definitely applies to me, I've always been the anxious type and my tinnitus got the better of me when my father was battling cancer, it was rough.

      I wish I had been alot smarter over the years though, I spent 8 years dancing for hours and hours infront of massive speaker stacks in very large clubs with no protection, then on top of that spent alot of my time working on music composition, sound engineering, djing and what not. It was ridiculous! I'm lucky my hearing is still really good (even up to 20khz) - it's just the tinnitus/hyperacusis(pain)/tensor tympani syndrome causing me grief now.
       
    16. seal

      seal Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma
      First of all, I'm sorry about your dad, I hope he's fine now... cancer also runs in my family, so I lost family members to that.
      What I would like to know is, did you already experience short term T those years you were clubbing, when you came home at night/in the morning? I mean temporary ringing in the ears until the next morning?
       
    17. yonkapin

      yonkapin Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Melbourne, Australia
      Tinnitus Since:
      March 2012
      Thank you. He passed away unfortunately :(. Sorry for your losses too, cancer is some very, very evil stuff!!

      To answer your question though, yeah pretty much always, even from the beginning ('04ish) - go out, party for 6+ hours and then come out of the club half deaf, ears ringing. Didn't think anything of it though, same with my friends, all apart of the night for us. The ringing would last a couple nights and my hearing would be muffled for days and then everything would return to normal - it was weird because I was never distressed about it ever, neither were my friends - they actually still don't care (silly), haha.

      I guess it would also depend on how the sound engineers would set up the sound for the night, some gigs were much easier on the ears than others, way too many performers and engineers like to run everything right into the red on the mixing consoles, so you end up listening to music very already very little dynamic range being straight up jammed as hard as possible through a monitor system. This is notorious across all scenes of music.

      I got my permanent tinnitus after heading to two gigs in a row one weekend, just woke up with a few new tinnitus tones that I didn't really recognize as being normal and bam something switched in my brain and they just stuck.
       
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    18. seal

      seal Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma
      I couldn't agree more, this is so sad. :(

      Me too, I had ringing in the ears before, when I went to clubs/concerts, but I only went a few times, so no partying for years. Yes, my friends also still don't protect their ears. I even have a friend who claims to have very very mild and low T and even she doesn't use ear plugs. But I just recently found out, that many people rarely experience T after loud nights out, usually they just come home with quiet ears. I really thought it was normal before. silly me!

      Definitely, the concert that gave me T was rated afterwards by various music journalists and all of them mentioned that the sound was extremely bad, so I guess that played a huge role in my T onset(n)

      Mine first started with a really mild white noise in my left ear, but 2 months later it became totally different without a cause, more like a ringing and also the right ear started. I think that was the point for me when it wasn't an ear condition anymore but got into my brain and stuck there until today.
       
    19. cmurem

      cmurem Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/05/2012
      Hi. My T began after severe depression. I got T accompanied by hearing loss at high frequencies. Hearing loss progressed over time. Stressed people are more prone to hearing impairment. I think it is overlooked by the medical environments. At least they should precribe extra supportive pills or any stuffs for depressed people to prevent further cell death in the inner ear.
       
    20. seal

      seal Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma
      Unfortunately I don't think there is any drug that can prevent hearing loss and inner ear damage... if there was they would give it to every us soldier.
       
    21. Shuffle
      Gloomy

      Shuffle Member Benefactor

      Location:
      UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Heavy Metal & Machinery
      That's something I hadn't considered, and definitely applies to me. I was probably going through one of the most stressful times in my life, with various things in my business, and that could certainly have made things worse.
       
    22. Leah

      Leah Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Chardon, Ohio USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      Wonderful insight, good reading, thanks.
       
    23. erik
      Breezy

      erik Manager Staff Benefactor

      Location:
      Washington State, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/15/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Most likely hearing loss
      I will also add that there are probably a lot of people out there who have tinnitus but not bothered by it at all to the extent that they don't even know what tinnitus is....I was talking to a friend a few months ago and ringing in the ears came up. She was in the military for 10 years but recently got out. Anyway she said "Oh I have that and have for years" and that was pretty much the extent of our conversation on it. I have known her for a while and she is a mellow, chill person. I don't think T bothers her one bit.
       
    24. Leah

      Leah Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Chardon, Ohio USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      2007
      I have heard people same thing, my guess it is about volume.
       
    25. Ozzy
      Wishful

      Ozzy Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Istanbul / Turkey
      Tinnitus Since:
      12.2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      * Ear infection * 20 years later huge sound increase due to stress
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    26. seal

      seal Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma
      that's interesting!
       
    27. seal

      seal Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2007
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma
      I wish I could take it as easy as she does.... maybe if my T was more stable it would be easier for me. mine keeps changing and reacting to things a lot...
       
    28. vickilynn
      Bookworm

      vickilynn Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Can't remember
      I hit my head more than once in my growing up years. Wonder if that's a contributing factor. I just would like some relief.
       
    29. Shuffle
      Gloomy

      Shuffle Member Benefactor

      Location:
      UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Heavy Metal & Machinery
      Very interesting, I sit in that camp too!

      I was having a very similar conversation with a truck driver this week, we happened to get talking about hearing for some reason or another. He says his is pretty loud but it doesn't bother him much at all. He thinks he got it from driving cabless bulldozers for long hours when he was younger.
       
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    30. Hopeful
      Wishful

      Hopeful Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/13

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