Why Has My Tinnitus Spiked? Why Has Tinnitus & Hyperacusis Increased?

Discussion in 'Support' started by Michael Leigh, Dec 17, 2016.

    1. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      Why has my tinntus spiked? Why has my tinnitus & hyperacusis increased?

      I believe when tinnitus and hyperacusis was caused by exposure to loud noise and the symptoms have reduced over time and a person habituates. If these conditions start to become worse again, it is likely (but not always) the reason is due to being around loud sounds or in some cases headphone use might be responsible. A prelude to this can be tinnitus spiking and a person might not be aware of the risks they are putting themselves to.

      Tinnitus can and does spike for many people and this is not necessarily caused by loud noise or sounds. After a while it usually returns to baseline or into its normal rhythm. Danger can present itself after a person habituates and the tinnitus has reduced to mild or moderate levels for most of the time. If one isn’t careful, it can be easy to forget and slip back into the old lifestyle of: Attending clubs, concerts and the cinema where sound levels can be quite high.

      I think a person with tinnitus should attend clubs, concerts and the cinema if they want to, providing they use noise-reducing earplugs to protect themselves. However, one should remember that nothing is one hundred percent safe. If external sound is loud enough it is able to pass through the mastoid bone and enter the inner ear and could irritate the cochlea. The mastoid bone is the hard piece of bone behind each ear. It is honeycombed with air pockets.

      When at a club or concert, my advice is to stay clear of large standing floor speakers and not to go too near the front stage where the music is likely to be booming out at high sound levels.

      In many instances people will get a warning when visiting these places. If the decibel levels are too high their tinnitus might spike and then return to baseline. However, some people do not pay attention to these warnings and continue to subject their ears to loud sounds and think they are perfectly safe because they are wearing earplugs. Under these circumstances the tinnitus might spike again and this time it might become permanent. I am saying might because nothing is for certain. In my opinion a person with tinnitus needs to follow the warnings their auditory system and tinnitus is telling them.

      Regarding headphones. Many people have contacted me after they have habituated to tinnitus and returned to using headphones and listened to music through them at low volume. All of them have noticed an increase in their tinnitus. Some of them noticed their tinnitus spiked but carried on listening to music through headphones and then the tinnitus increased to a higher and more permanent level.

      It must be said, that some people with tinnitus use headphones and have no adverse effects and that is perfectly fine. My opinion on this is, anyone that has tinnitus that was caused by exposure to loud noise, shouldn’t listen to any type of audio through headphones even at low level.

      It saddens to say, if a person doesn’t heed the warning signs their auditory system and tinnitus is telling them, then they will eventually feel because tinnitus is very unforgiving. It is fine when some people are telling others what they want to hear: "listen to music through headphones because life is for living".Go to the club as often as possible you’re safe with earplugs. If your tinnitus increases you will be the one that will be in the suffering.

      I have read many posts in tinnitus talk, where people had habituated and the tinnitus is low. They returned to listening to music through headphones and clubbing during the week and weekends. Some are now regretting this because their tinnitus has increased and they are in distress. Just because a person habituates doesn't mean they can forget everything and carry on in some instances recklessly. You can of course do this but my advice is to do things in moderation and not to excess, because the end result is often returning to ENT for help and visiting tinnitus forums because you are unable to cope.

      Michael
       
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    2. Rubenslash

      Rubenslash Member

      Location:
      Zurich
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Bad luck and bad decisions
      You are always saying that headphones are that bad but I use them sometimes for my job (conference calls). Do you believe they are still dangerous at normal volume? (speech volume)
       
    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      Please read my post again. I never said headphones were bad. I have said: Some people use headphones and they have no problems. Please read the post
      Many thanks
      Michael
       
    4. Themoon

      Themoon Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise-induced
      @Michael Leigh

      I wanted to write a post like this, and you made it. That's great.

      People HAVE TO STOP thinking about going to loud bars, loud venues, concerts, clubs, fireworks... I still don't get it why people keep on doing these kind of things???

      You can have T and have a totally pleasant life without going to these places. And then people complain why their tinnitus increases over time. STOP DOING these kind of things. T noise-induced means: your auditory system is weak and throws you an alert to tell you to stop all these activities and stop exposing your ears to insane loud sounds.

      You can enjoy family gathering at home, in a restaurant with soft music, outside, sport, beach, nature, visiting friends etc... there are so much to do. So why on earth do people keep on going to these loud places?

      Even for people with healthy ears, these places are really dangerous. If this is not tinnitus, they will lose their hearing over time and have a risk to be deaf.

      The headphones or earbuds should be prohibited as well, even at low volumes. We are not made to listen to music so close to our ears. I used to listen to music a lot and I regret it, cause I first got T but H on top of that.

      Please people, take care of your auditory system and warn all people around you, This industry has destroyed us and we keep on nurturing these criminals.

      YOU'LL FIND BELOW A LINK WITH THE LIMITS OF THE HEARING. 80 dB is already loud.

      http://www.soundadvice.info/thewholestory/san1.htm
       
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    5. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      @Themoon

      Hi Themoon,
      You wrote an interesting post and if I had my way then I would try to live like that. However, in the real world I think most people that have tinnitus would find it difficult.

      If a person has partner or a family or just wants to go out to places like the: cinema or a club or other venues of entertainment were music is played then I think they should. Providing the necessary precautions are taken as I’ve mentioned in my post then I don’t think there will be any problems.

      Wearing good ear protection and at the same time being aware no hearing protection is 100% safe. Using prudence and good judgement that’s all one needs to do. Most people with tinnitus will be able to live an enjoyable life doing everything that they want to, within reason when it comes to being around loud sounds.

      Headphones are another matter. As I’ve mentioned in my post and many times in this forum. Some people with tinnitus listen to music through headphones and have no problems. Others unfortunately do, even when the volume is low. The choice is up to the individual. All I am doing is advising people of the potential risk as I see it.

      Michael
       
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    6. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      I understand why you have written this, but it's not that simple. You say 'people have to stop', but there are implications to this that can be deep-rooted for some. Just stopping some of these activities can cause severe depression, withdrawal and other phschological issues that can ultimately end up being just as bad as the tinnitus itself. I don't believe we should just tell people to stop, like it's easy; it's almost condescending.

      We have to pay attention to our bodies and use common sense and caution. I would never advise anyone to just outright stop doing stuff that they love. For some it can be their livelihoods at stake; their passion in life etc. I'm a musician as I know many others are here, which puts us in a certain predicament. Our entire lives have been built around performing; spending a huge number of hours practising over many years for the ultimate thrill of putting on a good show. There are many others who fall into a similar situation who just happen to have lives built around things that may get loud (cars and bikes spring to mind).

      It's too flippant to just say "oh well, you better stop now". For some it will be quite an easy adjustment to avoid loud places. But, I'd still imagine it would be extremely difficult to keep this up without having to avoid a lot of life's special moments (weddings, birthdays, christenings, work parties, family bonfire nights in UK, Independence Day in the US, New Year's Eve, etc).

      My adice would be this: If your life would not be dramatically altered by avoiding loud places, then just avoid them as much as possible. Nice and easy solution. If however, you find the thought of this causes you mental anguish then the answer is not so straight forward. I'd say always use good earplugs, stay away from speakers, and if possible, reduce your exposure time. If you're somewhere and it's stupidly loud (quite rare) then simply leave.

      Don't let tinnitus ruin your life, and don't let yourself begin to fear sound (phonophobia).
      Your life really doesn't have to be radically different.

      PS, I've been to a few gigs and bars with my earplugs and I can honestly say I felt amazing to be out again in each instance. It had a hugely positive affect on me and my wellbeing. If I'd have stayed away I'm pretty sure I'd be full of anxiety, and I'd be quite depressed.
       
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    7. Themoon

      Themoon Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise-induced
      @Ed209

      I know it's not easy to stop at once. I was in that case. But the choice was clear: my ears or having fun and take a risk to ruin completely my life.

      I didn't mention weddings as something to avoid, I even did mention family gatherings. Your advice are right in a certain way : use good earplugs, reducing time exposure, be away of the speakers. But, still I cannot understand this vital need to go "Loud places" such as clubs. At my onset, it was clear in my mind that I would never again put my feet in a club again. And I did right. I had light hyperacusis in the begining, and did not really understand the mechanisms of it and I had a major setback just by going in the city without carring earplugs. I don't dare thinking about the consequences it could have brought by going in a club again.

      It's easy: you can go in a bar which is not blasting loud music. I know a lot of them. You can watch movies at home with a customed home speakers and invite friends. There are some cinemas that are not broadcasting movies at such insane levels of sounds. You can travel etc... Lot of things you can do and adjust yourself.

      I used to love music, more than anything else. I hate music today of what have done to my hearing. It's not properly music, cause i still like singing but this music industry who destroyed my hearing.

      It can cause depression but sometimes you just have other choices than still running to these loud places. And I know : in order to treat a depression, it makes more sense to have a look at the sea, be surrounded by people you love, still doing things you love in a way that would be less harmful.

      It just makes me crazy to see people encouraging others who are already suffering to do again the same mistakes that led them to T.
       
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    8. Themoon

      Themoon Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise-induced

      I understand your point of view. But we live in a noisy world, I'm sorry. Maybe if I hadn't T or H, I wouldn't think the same. But this leads to a lack of awareness that bring people in such dark places.

      I think it's not really difficult. It's just a real way to live. Thanks Mickael for your postings, advising people is a good way to save the humanity.
       
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    9. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      I don't go to clubs anymore, but you answered your own question when you said "I cannot understand". Clubs can be a huge part of people's lives, not just for the social angle but some people also DJ. For you, and also for me at my point in life, avoiding clubs now is pretty easy. For some however it can be a huge step and can be rather traumatising having to miss out on their weekends with friends. Some clubs aren't that loud and I'd probably recommend finding some quieter places, along with the use of earplugs, rather than outright avoidance. But, it's ultimately up to people to make these decisions themselves.

      It really isn't as straight forward as you're suggesting. The way we socialise and enjoy meeting with friends often leads to loud situations. It's just how life is and cannot always be avoided.
       
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    10. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      Hi Themoon,
      You have raised some interesting points in both your posts and so has @Ed209 in his post. I am particularly drawn to your last sentence, which should resonate throughout this forum, because it’s so true and I wish some people would take notice.

      All the best
      Michael
       
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    11. glynis
      Feminine

      glynis Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      2004
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Meniere's Disease
      I think if you feel happy to go out and have plugs with you and your emotional reactions to tinnitus is ok then you should go out and have fun and lots of laughs as we need this to balance out the not so nice things that crop up in life so you get a balance.
      Life brings ups and downs so we really need the ups .
      Go with what you feel comfortable with ....lots of love glynis
       
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    12. Pirru89

      Pirru89 Member

      Location:
      Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      2000
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Rubenslash: What kind of business are you in? :)
       
    13. Themoon

      Themoon Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise-induced
      It should be.

      Awareness must be made through us: the sufferers. With your words, it seems you on the side of the ENT, like this one who told me: go ahead, live your life, you're gonna be ok. Result: permanent tinnitus with H on top of that.
      I wish I could do some awareness, but I can't due to my H. I do my best: I always inform my family, my friends, other sufferers.

      Our duty is to inform and warn newbies about the danger of lound sound. To take care of themselves. That they can still enjoy life in a more pleasant way just by avoiding loud and dangerous sounds. We have to be FIRM in the way we inform, and indeed then it is people ultimate decision to expose themselves or not. If this 1st doctor would have just told me : be careful, don't expose again your ears, I would probably not be on TT today. Cause I got some luck in the beginning, my T was gone until I exposed myself to loud sound again, thinking I was cured.

      I want the world to really consider this condition. More and more young people are suffering from it. A lot of them are are about to kill themselves. Some have lost their partner because of the depression it brought. Others can't pursue their dreams or studies. More and more suffer from H which is a real curse. And we should be ok to just say: it's ok, even with T, you can still go out.

      I read that you recently got married. Congratulations, and wish you a happy and long life together. But I hope you will inform your future children about the dangers of sounds?

      I would even suggest putting some information/warning as an introduction for newbies so that they are informed about the hearing, its mechanisms and the hearing threshold. @Markku what do you think of? Something we can see at once when we suscribe to TT.

      I'm sorry, I don't wanna fight with anybody here, just help all these people. But it's time now to educate the population about noise, to fight the medical corporation (cause all they want is money, they don't care about us), to convince the government... AND WE ARE THE BEST AMBASSADORS. I bet that these ENTs know very well the dangers of sound and would never let their children going out without hearing protections or explain them that loud noise is harmful. Other option: voting a law to reduce the dbs in the clubs, bars etc... Some people are fighting to have it in Europe. Cause I never saw a club under 100 dbs.

      A T sufferer told me his story: he has T since 10 years. Today he's in peace with it, but sometimes still challenging. He told me he got cancer at 25 (he's 45). He won his battle against cancer. But he admitted that his fight with T was much harder that with his cancer. He changed his job, moved out, adjusted himself. He was a musician.That says it all.

      I'm just so upset to have H, I would be able to organize a demonstration to denounce the perversity of this system.

      To end up, life is full of noise : love, laughs and even tears. But a bunch of 50 people laughing never gave T to anybody.
       
    14. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      @Themoon

      Hi Themoon,
      I admire your tenacity and steadfastness in wanting to bring greater awareness to the masses about the dangers of loud noise exposure, and to prevent hearing damage and tinnitus. I believe when this condition is loud and intrusive, it can be seriously debilitating and is comparable to any other acute medical condition, simply because of what it is able to do to a person’s state of mind.

      One only has to Google tinnitus to find out the lengths that some people will go to, to free themselves from the torment that they live with. However, tinnitus is just one in a long list of medical conditions that when it becomes severe can make life intolerable. There are videos on Youtube, showing young people being interviewed after leaving a nightclub and told about the risks of hearing damage and tinnitus, due to the loud noise in the club they had just left. Their response was to laugh and say they don’t care.

      I watched a TV documentary a couple years ago about the same thing. A woman told the interviewer: “when I leave a club and my ears are ringing, it’s a sign that I’ve had a good night”. A guy replied: “The louder the music is the better”. And so the story went on.

      Some of the comments in this forum when others and I explain about the risks of tinnitus becoming worse due to headphone use, even at low volume. These people have tinnitus and some dismiss it as nonsense and we are scaremongers. Many that choose to continue with headphone use have seen the error of their ways and reported their tinnitus has become louder and more intrusive. Just before someone challenges me from the headphone fraternity who is reading this post. I want to say, not everyone that has tinnitus will be adversely affected by headphone use.

      Bringing greater awareness about the dangers of loud noise, is a splendid thing to do but I don’t think it will have the desired affect, considering what I’ve mentioned above but it’s worth a try.

      Michael
       
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    15. Themoon

      Themoon Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise-induced

      I like the way you explain things Mickael in such an elegant and effective way. :)

      Indeed until T is not so severe, people don't really measure the upcoming dangers. And you're right by advising people, we need people like you.

      But I think we have to keep up. I know around me a lot of people having tinnitus. Silence is so beautiful, I wish I could hear it again.

      I think communication must be made on a harder way, showing the reality of T and even H with true testimonials. Like shocking images, and passing some sounds of T, I'm pretty sure a lot of people would be more wise about their ears.

      In a famous festival, a T awareness campaign is made and free earplugs are given.


      About my warmings, please have a look on the chat. Some people are talking about worsening of their mild T.

      I know people who are currently committed in bringing some awareness. I mean no awareness ==> no cure.

      :thankyousign: for your answers, and I hope one day some light will be shed.

      I will not bother TT for long, it's people's life, and they don't like the truth. Cause truth hurts. But I wish someone could hurt me with this truth before I got T.
       
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    16. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      @Themoon

      Hi Themoon,

      Thank you for your kind comments.
      There is a lot of truth in what say and I agree for some people the truth can hurt.
      I recently finished writing an article about tinnitus that you might like to read some time. Please click on the link below.
      All the best
      Michael
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/tinnitus-a-personal-view.18668/
       
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    17. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015

      Again, I can see what you are trying to say and do, but it really isn't so simple. I advise EVERYONE around me about noise as soon as things get loud, and in general. So much so that I'm pretty sure people are tired of me lecturing them about the dangers of sound. I don't take the side of anyone, as I realise humans are not binary and it really isn't effective to treat everyone the same way.

      For example: if I was told that I must never go to a gig again, and I must immediately stop my musical work; it would be horrendous. Forget the tinnitus, my mental health would literally nosedive. Not everyone would react this way which is why it's not such a black and white thing. You must realise that some people have LIVES built around situations that involve occasional noise. We have to be careful how we advise people.

      Making the masses aware of the dangers of noise is universally beneficial to everyone, and I've been an advocate of this for as long as I can remember. More needs to be done. I would like to see posters on club doors warning of what can happen, and bold warnings about noise on the front of every concert ticket. I have spoken about this a lot on here and have stated that most people would totally ignore the warnings, but having them there gives people a chance. It's just unfortunate that most humans prioritise looking cool over protecting their ears, and until the social norm shifts, people will continue as they are. In the past I compared this to the warning labels on cigarette packets and how ineffective they are on the whole. If you look at how people have viewed cycling helmets over the past few decades you'll see that we have gone from mass avoidance, (because of being uncool - driven by the lack of people using them) to widespread use. This is because of a shift in the way society perceives them. We are literally like sheep, and are hugely driven by an innate feeling to fit in. Make ear plugs cool and tinnitus rates will plummet.
       
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    18. Themoon

      Themoon Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise-induced

      For once, I agree with you. Compromising is possible. :)

      And you said it, we give people a chance. Aren't we just so sweet people willing to help others? That's how mankind should be, fully serving and loving others. We're going to make history.
       
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    19. joseph Ghass
      Angelic

      joseph Ghass Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      1/2015
      First of all habituation is a myth.

      Secondly, the root cause of tinnitus is not all about loud sounds. It is a combination of factors that leads to these symptoms.

      I will be posting soon a 3 months plan that put everyone in the road to heal their T.

      Enough, we need to end this T mess forever.
       
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    20. Themoon

      Themoon Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise-induced

      Hi Joseph,

      Indeed, at the onset, I think some lack of vitamins and some depression/anxiety brings up T more than with someone with a good state of mind and in perfect shape. Loud sounds are the trigger. But let's keep in mind that exposure to lound sounds lead very often to some serious damages.
       
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