Would Reactive Tinnitus Indicate More Severe Damage to the Inner Ear?

Discussion in 'Support' started by amillar1993, Oct 3, 2019.

    1. amillar1993

      amillar1993 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      What is the general consensus on Reactive vs Non-Reactive Tinnitus?

      Would reactive tinnitus indicate more severe damage to the inner ear (assuming it is noise induced)?

      I only ask as I see lots of users on here having spikes from certain sounds/foods, and mine doesn't seem to do that at all.

      For clarity, my tinnitus (highly likely noise induced, no hearing loss, yes it's been checked to 16 kHz, and beyond that I can easily hear up to around 20 kHz on low-ish volumes with my PC monitors) has always been at the 'in a quiet/silent room' stage and never been any louder, 8 weeks in at the moment.

      I've had small episodes of ear fullness/hot ears which didn't start until the 4th week but I think that may have been due to increased blood flow from the prescribed betahistines as it started almost immediately after taking them. They didn't seem to be doing anything so once I finished the prescription I didn't try and get more. Prior to that I had no symptoms other than tinnitus, and I've not really had any of that in the last 2 weeks since stopping it.
       
      • Good Question Good Question x 1
    2. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      @amillar1993

      First of all there is no such thing as "Reactive tinnitus". This terminology was made up in tinnitus forums. The tinnitus can and does react to sound but this is caused by Hyperacusis (sensitivity to sound) which usually affects a person that has tinnitus caused by loud noise exposure.

      In reference to food: Unless you were affected by certain foods and drinks prior to the onset of your tinnitus food is unlikely to affect it, although some medicines can. Again, this can be all in the mind. Some antidepressant medications can affect tinnitus but this is usually temporary.

      It is not unusual to experience ear fullness especially with "noise induced" tinnitus although other things can cause this too. If it is NIT the ear fullness with go away in time.

      You are new to tinnitus and it will fluctuate a lot in the early stages but tends to settle down in time. You say your tinnitus cause is unknown? The most common cause of tinnitus is exposure to loud noise. Before the onset of your tinnitus, were you a regular user of headphones? Go to places where there is loud music: clubs or concerts? Work in a noisy environment? Use a headset frequently to play computer games? If yes to any of these questions then your tinnitus, is likely to be "Noise induced". If it isn't noise induced then it's probably caused by an underlying medical problem within your auditory system or elsewhere in your body.

      If it is noise induced, I strongly advise that you do not listen to music through headphones even at low volume, as you risk the tinnitus becoming worse. Please click on the links below and read my articles that you might find helpful. Try to avoid quiet rooms and surrounding especially at night, by using "sound enrichment" more about this is explained in my posts below.

      All the best
      Michael

      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/new-to-tinnitus-what-to-do.12558/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/tinnitus-a-personal-view.18668/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/hyperacusis-as-i-see-it.19174/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/acquiring-a-positive-mindset.23969/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/tinnitus-and-the-negative-mindset.23705/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/the-habituation-process.20767/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/is-positivity-important.23150/
       
    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      amillar1993

      amillar1993 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Thanks for clarifying.

      It is highly likely to be from noise, it came on (or at least, I first noticed it) a week after being exposed to loud music. And I do have a history of going to a couple of gigs in years previous without plugs, I've used headphones like most people do but never at stupid levels. The only other routes I'm exploring due to them being near to the onset is a deficiency of some sort due to a drastic change in diet a month prior (as well as a history of anemia from previous health issues) or a jaw issue due to some pretty invasive dental work that definitely altered my bite... those are both less likely causes but I figure worth exploring.

      The fullness/hot ears wasn't there at all during the first 3 or so weeks, it came on literally half an hour after taking my first dose of betahistine, and stopped about a day or 2 after I stopped taking it.

      Stress/anxiety also seemed to induced TTTS I'm that 4th week but that's going down as I'm learning to realise that 'normal' sounds aren't hurting me. I thought this was hyperacusis at first but I was confusing 'pain' and the muscle twitching.

      During that first month as I was ignoring it and largely dealing ok I wasn't on this forum and was using headphones still as well as going to band rehearsal (with plugs, I think what caused this was the first rehearsal without plugs)...

      Thankfully during that month nothing got any worse and I've stopped doing all those things over the last 3/4 weeks.

      As mentioned I can literally only hear it in a near silent room, if I'm ever in that situation I can breathe heavily to drown it out. It's generally pretty easy to avoid hearing it. I'm hopeful things will get better in time, but some days are testing my patience.
       
    4. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      @amillar1993

      It is up to you what you want to do so I am just giving you advice based on many years experience with "noise induced" tinnitus. If you want to get better and your tinnitus not to get louder and reduce over time. I suggest that you do not listen to music through headphones even at low volume. There will be people in this forum that will tell you it's perfectly okay to use headphones as long as the volume is low. Some ENT doctors might tell you the same. I am telling you if you follow their advice, then you risk your tinnitus becoming louder and it may not reduce. The choice is yours.

      I believe your tinnitus was mostly caused by headphone use. Peruse some of the posts in this forum and other tinnitus forums. You will find the cause of tinnitus is due to headphone use and other forms of loud noise exposure. People do not realise how loud they are listening to music through headphones. I advise you to keep away from loud bands for a while even with earplugs. The reason being, if external sound is loud enough, it will pass through your head/skull and be transferred to your inner ear and spike the tinnitus. Not even the best ear protection can stop this so be careful.

      Read my posts in the links that I have given you and in time you will improve. Start taking Ginkgo Biloba and magnesium tablets, to help repair nerves in your auditory pathways affected by noise trauma.

      Best of luck
      Michael
       
    5. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      amillar1993

      amillar1993 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Sorry I was editing my post as you wrote that I think, after those first few weeks of trying to act 'normal'... even if cautious. I've stopped those things entirely after seeing the posts on here. Thankfully that time didn't worsen my tinnitus.

      I use plugs in the gym now too.

      Ginkgo and magnesium are also on the way already.
       
    6. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      It is good to keep fit but be careful of loud sounds at the gym and If you do wear earplugs, then use "noise reducing" earplugs. These reduce external sounds but don't block out sound completely like foam earplugs. Foam earplugs are not a good idea to wear as, they will make your brain focus more on the internal sounds within your body and can increase the tinnitus, if you are not careful. In general it is not a good idea to use earplugs or any type too often. I explain this in more detail in my post: Hyperacusis, As I see it, in the link that I have given you.

      Keep in mind that running on hard ground or on a treadmill can make tinnitus louder for some people due to impact under foot. This travels up through the: legs, body and to the head and can increase the tinnitus make it permanently louder. See how you get on.

      Michael
       
    7. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      amillar1993

      amillar1993 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      A loud bang from a barbell someone was using was what prompted we to start using them about a week or so ago, the sound didn't aggravate/hurt anything, I'm now just more aware of louder sounds...

      I've got musician's ones that don't muffle the sound, I can't hear the tinnitus with them in when I'm in there it just takes the edge off the loudest sounds/highest frequencies.

      I don't wear them out in everyday situations, just the gym.

      I don't run because I've got a messed up knee so that's not a problem.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    8. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      It seems like you are doing the right things best of luck
      Michael
       
      • Like Like x 1
    9. eagerUser

      eagerUser Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Un
      Well said @Michael Leigh
      Why should one use headphones? What is the benefit of using them? I don't really understand! I have never liked headphones, actually I have always hated them, It's ridiculous that people use headphones all the time!
      I can't think of a single benefit of headphones actually there isn't any!
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    10. boliston
      No Mood

      boliston Member

      Location:
      Taunton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      30th April 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Idiopathic
      I have recently started taking tablets that contain Ginkgo biloba, French maritime pine bark and magnesium, and my tinnitus seems a bit less 'angry' sounding so I'm hoping it could be working

      https://newnordic.co.uk/en/ear-tonetm.html
       
    11. Svensk

      Svensk Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      This post helped me a lot. I have a noise induced tinnitus going on for one month now with no improvement. I dont go to concerts or listen to loud music, I did wear earbud headphones for a long time but not at high volume. It was just this one time I went to a very loud wedding. Two weeks after, tinnitus set in, I was the only one who had damage even though it was painfully loud for everyone. The first days were very dark especially after reading about tinnitus on the web. I stopped going to work and isolated myself in my bedroom, I was extremely depressed. Did an audiology and it was normal and talked to one ENT who said it will go away but didn't say how long. He advised to live normally and avoid head cancellation headphones which I was wearing without music when I saw him because it will prolong the healing. Another ENT said it may or may not go which didn't help at all. Then I realaized that the hissing and sometimes eeee'ing gets worse with noises. After reading this post my outlook changed, it gave me hope, something I desperately need. I started to go out and listen to everyday sounds even if it increases the hissing. I'm taking B complex supplement and magnesium, stopped caffeine and diet drinks hoping these things can help. But once I put into my head that this is temporary (even if it isn't), gave me a reason to continue my life. If someone reads in my post something that indicates that this could be permanent, please don't tell me. Living with hope for years is better than no hope at all. However, any advice is welcome : )
       
      • Like Like x 1
    12. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996

      Pleased to know that you found my post helpful and that you are making improvement.

      Best of luck for the future.
      All the best

      Michael
       

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