Tips for tinnitus

Listening at a very loud volume will definitely make mine worst. Although listening at late night whisper volumes can misdirect consciousness of it.  Sometimes earworms help.  Nothing will every make it go away completely.

I can imagine being in one of those quiet rooms, the ones with acoustic treatment everywhere in which boffins use to measure sound waves - and being deafened by it.

I have suffered with permanent tinnitus since I had my ears syringed as a young boy over 30 years ago. I have a high pitch whistle which drives me crazy from the moment I wake, till I fall asleep at night. I find that music really helps take my mind off it, even at low volumes. Silence, not that I remember what that’s like, is torture! There are certain frequencies that aggravate it too. But we’ll recorded, non compressed music really works for me. 

It does make me irritable at times HH. It’s aroung 8k Hz. I dread getting a cold as it’s harder to push the noise to the back of my mind. The only solution my doctor could come up with was to make me completely deaf. I gave him my unimpressed face. 

I find it's quite easy to experience loud music, and for long enough, on a big works night out, say in a crowded pub standing around talking (shouting) above the speakers. I come home to my quiet flat and the ringing starts. It sounds mad but I jam foam ear plugs in before I go to bed and have always felt alright in the morning. Hearing-wise anyway ;-)

After suffering years of work induced tinnitus, I was pleasantly surprised to find it completely disappeared, when my deteriorating hearing dictated that I start wearing hearing aids.

My audiologist confirmed that this was a not uncommon outcome.

So, hope at least, for those whose hearing is maybe not what it once was. 

I've had chronic and constant tinnitus since age 4 as a result of severe ear infections. It sounds like a perpetual, low-level din from a swarm of locusts between my ears and it's been there as long as I can remember, never goes away. No medical remedies I've found. Best I can do to reduce the intensity is to keep my blood pressure as low as possible. Exercise and avoiding alcohol and caffeine really helps. I sleep with a white noise machine running all night at home. At hotels I keep the bathroom or HVAC fan running. I use foam earplugs at concerts, sporting events, near machinery, and during flights. Music at moderate volume is a great escape. Good luck.

Huge posted:

It sounds mad and near impossible... but the best thing is to train your self to simply not listen to it.

Not sure if working in the music industry for forty years is what's caused a constant ringing in my head, but most of the time I can do as Huge has said... not listen to it.  But on occasion it wins.  Relaxing and thinking calm thoughts*  helps to move it into the background.  Playing music also helps, but at fairly high volumes in order to drown out the tinnitus. 

Different people seem to experience this phenomenon in different ways and have varying ways of coping as earlier posts reveal.  Who knows, there may be some talented audiologist right now developing ear transplants;  don't think I'll be around long enough to benefit though.

* 'calm thoughts'  -  you know, the kind of thoughts that don't involve your mother in law, your ex-partner or your tax affairs 

I’m very surprised to read how people are suffering so much from tinnitus, which I always thought was an occasional thing. It’s a heavy cross to have to bear. I have palatal myoclonus, which is quite rare and is an involuntary contraction of the soft palate, which causes clicking in one ear, as the contraction goes down the eustachian tube. When it started, about 30 years ago, I was given epilepsy drugs to control it, but they had weird side effects so I stopped taking them. Over the years my brain has learned to control it and it rarely bothers me, unless it’s very quiet and sometimes it returns. Interestingly, I can make my ear click to order, so if a doctor puts a stethoscope to my ear they can hear it, or if they look in my ear they can see the eardrum move. The ears are amazing things, but clearly the source of all sorts of problems. 

Hungryhalibut posted:

I’m very surprised to read how people are suffering so much from tinnitus, which I always thought was an occasional thing. It’s a heavy cross to have to bear. I have palatal myoclonus, which is quite rare and is an involuntary contraction of the soft palate, which causes clicking in one ear, as the contraction goes down the eustachian tube. When it started, about 30 years ago, I was given epilepsy drugs to control it, but they had weird side effects so I stopped taking them. Over the years my brain has learned to control it and it rarely bothers me, unless it’s very quiet and sometimes it returns. Interestingly, I can make my ear click to order, so if a doctor puts a stethoscope to my ear they can hear it, or if they look in my ear they can see the eardrum move. The ears are amazing things, but clearly the source of all sorts of problems. 

We'd probably be better off without them then...  a USB connector straight into the brain, perhaps?

(not forgetting that many a true word is said in jest)

Anyone with hearing problems has my sympathies. My problem is minor compared to some of the posts here, but I found in February this year my hearing had deteriorated in my right ear. Now in September I have finally had some treatment that has partially worked.

The delay was caused by my GP failing to complete some simple forms for a considerable period of time, and finally when I saw a consultant he told me that the chances of successful treatment increase the sooner the problem is tackled. Grrrr. Plus wasting time with a useless hearing test on the NHS which suggested my hearing is fine. I then got a decent hearing test privately and It turns out my right ear has lost some of the lower frequencies. I am lucky to have private insurance through work.

anyway, an intro tympanic steroid injection has improved things. Steroid applied with a syringe through the eardrum. The procedure is fine, but then you are very dizzy for 1 minute, followed by 2 hours of nasty earache and brain freeze like headaches. I would say my right ear hearing has improved from 75% to 85%.

Anyone who thinks their hearing is deteriorating get it checked out ASAP and you might improve your chances of some successful treatment. 

I have permanent tinnitus, most likely as a result of playing hundreds of metal gigs over the years.  It never goes away, but it isn't noticeable all the time - just most of the time.  I had a hearing test a couple of years ago and apparently there's no hearing loss, there's just a ringing sensation on top of what I hear.

I've found I can usually find a volume for music which means I don't notice the ringing too much, but which isn't so loud that it exacerbates it once the music stops.  But I do struggle with anything more than moderate background noise levels in pubs etc, and even a live, unamplified orchestra is too loud for me.

Once I couldn't ignore it any more, I decided to try to make sure that it didn't turn into hearing loss, and invested in a proper moulded pair of earplugs.  Mine are from ACS, and cost about £130 including the mould-taking session.  I started out with the recommended musicians' model, which provides approx 17 decibels' attenuation.  I found that still wasn't enough to prevent worse ringing after shows/rehearsals, and so ordered a -26 decibel pair.  They're not perfect, but boy do I notice the difference compared to not using them.

I'd strongly recommend that anyone who suffers with tinnitus considers getting a pair.  Because they're moulded, you can take them with you when you go out and pop them in in seconds - no fiddling about with squashing foam plugs etc.  And because they're posh, they don't affect sound quality as much as other types.  They're designed to attenuate all frequencies as evenly as possible.  You can hear people speak pretty well even in noisy places.  And for live music, again, they're not perfect, but live music sounds way better when using them than it does when using foam bungs.

Like Nigel, I can make my ears click to order with a slight movement of certain facial muscles. It's something I've always been aware of and consequently has never really bothered me except when I have a cold and cannot do it. But having read this thread I've just turned the amp down a tad. 

Parlow posted:

On occasion I suffer from tinnitus.  Sometimes music makes it go away, sometimes it makes it worse.  If anyone has any tips for dealing with it I'd be very appreciative.

I've had it for 16 years and explored many avenues for relief. The most success I've had is with cannabis. I find it works in two ways, either reducing  tinnitus intensity or shifting mental focus. Either way, once your focus is off the tinnitus, you have relief. 

Jan

My left ear is a constant ringing; I am amazed that I don't "hear" it more often, unless I think about it, then realize it is always there. Went to an ENT a few years ago and did the sound proof room testing, etc, and they determined that ear had lost -35 dB in certain frequencies. They call me to come back every year, but what for? They have no answer, and knowing it is now -38dB isn't going to make my life any different.

Where I mainly suffer is in places with a lot of background noise...I cannot hear well individual conversations. My father is deaf in one ear, and can't hear s**t in the other...the thought of that happening to me scares me as much as I enjoy music. I don't use ear buds for this reason, preferring over the ear headphones.

I was diagnosed with tinnitus some years ago and have had a constant ringing in both of my ears ever since.
I guess years of playing drums, Rock concerts, night-clubs, motorbike riding without ear protection etc. have all taken their toll.

Bed time is worst, particularly after a long car drive or concert. The ringing is terrible. 

Going out to anything potentially loud, I now wear musicians earplugs which attenuate rather than block all frequencies.
There's nothing worse than wearing foam earplugs to a concert which block all the treble, makes the bass boomy and is akin to putting your fingers in your ears.

Initially after diagnosis, I went to bed with the radio on very, very quietly, to take my mind off the ringing noise. It helped a lot.
Now, after some years, I can usually ignore it and it no longer drives me crazy.

A build up of wax which blocks my ear canals makes the ringing noise appear to be louder, so I now regularly use olive oil to help to keep my ears clear.

Loud restaurants are a nightmare and I find anything noisy, loud bangs, concerts, cinemas etc. are FAR too loud for me these days.

I always go equiped with my earplugs when attending such event/occasions.

Your hearing is too valuable to not to take care of.

 

I found that mine goes up and down with medication use.  I need them for my health so don't know if it'll go away without meds.

Ah well I make the best of it.  I find focussing on certain things and getting outside with activity, walking or gardening I can focus and ignor it.

I've been suffering from tinnitus for 4 years now. I relate it to an especially stressful project I was involved in at the time. But it's probably impossible to find a single cause for the tinnitus.

I understand that there are music apps that claim to ease your tinnitus by filtering out your specific tinnitus frequency. One is called Tinnitracks. I've never tested it and it might not be available outside of Germany.

I have suffered from tinnitus in the left ear for three years following an incident in which somebody tried to kill me.

I have a  hissing in the left ear which varies in intensity from day-to-day and which can be inaudible for days on end. Everyday is different.

I wear a white noise generator(which looks like a small hearing aid) and visit an audiologist on the NHS at my local hospital three times a year.

The most important thing she tries to stress is to train the brain to accept the noise as something harmless and even boring. The brain is our internal policeman, always scanning for new noises or ones it thinks are a danger. The thinking is that once the brain accepts the tinnitus signal as  non threatening it will lose interest in it to a degree and the tinnitus signal will seem less intrusive. It we get stressed about it and and see the tinnitus as a battle and an enemy then things will not improve and may even get worse.

That's the theory anyway and it's not always easy to take on board. Things have certainly improved in three years although i get spikes which can be alarming, but the challenge is to try and relax and keep relatively busy so the brain focuses on other more interesting things. Yoga and meditation is a great help.

 

Sister xx

Yoga and any kind of physical excercise is a great help for me too - as well as occasional weed. 

Listening to music I find that sometimes digital music replay enforces the tinnitus stronger than vinyl - not so late at night, no idea why, maybe cleaner mains current late night.

It also calmes me down to do cable dressing or re-arrange something in my setup like speaker placement - so that in the end I can‘t tell if the difference is in the setup or in my mind.

 

I was at my Drs and a wall shelf of info was available, one was on Tinnitus.  Very informative, very technical and you should go to an ear specialist and get hearing test.  I did that and was profoundly sad that I have poor hearing, but at 63 that's what happens.  Also, any drugs even aspirin can charge it up.  While there get your ears cleaned with warm water, it makes a huge difference.  10 years ago was my first time, I was aghast at what came out, and it took a long time for the nurse, but I was in landscaping  and it's dry here in CA.

Sadly I too have tinnitus ..I believe it became a lot worse after two severe bouts of labyrinthitis which put me to bed for several weeks ...not fun

It can cause permanent deafness ..so I guess I'm lucky to just have the ringing ...

I tried Lazer treatment for a while.. which is claimed to help some people...it did seem to do something..but wasn't a permanent solution unfortunately..

I have had tinnitus since a teenager in the early 70's. I believe that going to lots of loud rock concerts was a factor, as was my love of listening to music far too loud on my electret headphones, I think the volume level was enough to have the phones bouncing of my ears....and various Walkmans. 

I have music or the radio on all The time which at least masks the whistling. 

Bob F

If it’s any consolation I’ve had it for 10 years. Worse some days than others and when I’m tired. My bother-in-law who’s a GP said it was the inevitable sign of deafness - thanks!

I've learned to cope with it and at times can tune it out by focussing on other things, even putting earphones on and listening to the World Service at 3.00am. I still enjoy my music though, just not played too loud. You have my sympathies!

I suspect that achieving fasting insulin  less than 5 uIU/ml might eliminate or significantly reduce tinnitus symptoms. Unfortunately this is easier said than done, It takes a combination of luck, education, high intelligence, determination to achieve such a goal. Most people have around 10 uIU/ml and seldom measure it...

As far as i know there is no data  that insulin directly related with tinnitus.  This means that no one until today scientifically tested this hypothesis. On the other hand nothing prevents any individual to test this by himself.

There are data  that chronically elevated insulin is related with all the serious illness. There is no pill that lowers insulin, so its a process that involve reconsidering many parameters of lifestyle like when you eat, what you eat, sleep patterns, moving, sun exposure etc. I suspect that if one succeeds lowering insulin, a secondary benefit could be mild or no tinnitus symptoms.

Lowering fasting insulin is a very difficult target and the first hurdle to overcome is to accept that is worth doing it.

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