Tinnitus

denti alligator · 1226

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Offline denti alligator

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on: April 29, 2024, 06:15:31 AM
Until recently, I had no issues with my hearing. Since my late 20s I’ve been careful to wear earplugs to loud concerts, and I never turn up the music so loud that it is even close to uncomfortable.

But I went to a concert five weeks ago that seems to have changed everything. It was a concert of classical Indian music, so I assumed (wrongly) that it wouldn’t be amplified. And when I saw there was amplification, I figured it wouldn’t be an issue, because, well, it’s Indian classical music! How loud can it get? Not that loud, actually, but there was something about the space and the PA system that really hurt my ears. A piercing hurt. Strangely, my wife and son, the former of whom is usually very sensitive to loud music, didn’t have the same reaction I did.

Which is a ringing in both ears. I assumed it would stop after a day or two. It’s been five weeks and no letup. I saw an audiologist today who basically said it would be permanent. I’m in mourning. I can no longer enjoy music, which has to compete with the ringing, and if it’s turned up even slightly above normal listening levels, hurts my ears and causes a kind of extra overtone ring.

I don’t know what to do. I’m seeing an ENT soon, but at this stage I’m both frustrated, mad, and very very sad. How could one concert lead to this, a concert that clearly didn’t both anyone else? Does this mean the time, money, and care I put into my audio system is now for nought?

I’m posting here I guess for some kind of support. I doubt I’m alone. How have you Bottleheaders dealt with hearing loss, damage, tinnitus, etc? Is there any hope?

- Sam

Rega P3-24 (w/AT 150MLX) w/Groovetracer upgrades / Eros II / FLAC >J.River >DSD256 >Gustard X20 / Moreplay > Stereomour II / Klipsch Forte II w/Crites upgrades / C4S S.E.X. 2.0 +Nickel MQ Iron / Speedball Crack / Sennheiser HD600 w/Cardas cable


Offline Doc B.

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Reply #1 on: April 29, 2024, 07:06:09 AM
I have a mild case a lot of the time (like right now). This may sound out in left field, but I have been getting theraputic massage for about a year now for my arthritis. In the process the therapist has been doing a lot of work on my neck. It seems to help reduce the tinnitus. I'm guessing maybe it relieves some stress on the vagus nerve or stimulates it, but I only know enough to be dangerous.

Dan "Doc B." Schmalle
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Bottlehead Corp.


Offline ccmccull

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Reply #2 on: April 29, 2024, 07:10:13 AM
I have it. I'm in my early 50s and there wasn't an initiating event, I don't think. Here's what I've learned about my own, some might be useful for you. As you can see I'm still figuring it out after more than a year.

First, it really sucks. I feel for you.

Mine comes and goes, on a daily to weekly basis. I'll have a week of loud ringing, then a couple of days where I don't notice it at all.

I think it's related to sinus /inner ear / eustachian tube congestion. It's like it's a new symptom of the allergies I've had my whole life.

It's also related to neck and shoulder tension. I have this vibrating ball device made by theragun about the size of a softball which really helps loosen my neck muscles. And the standard neck stretches also help. I have read that some of these muscles go up and near the inner ear and can cause irritation when tense. This really helps me.

It's worse after doing upper body weight training. Likely due to straining neck and shoulders.

Environment and mood play a big factor. For example when I'm traveling on vacation it often goes away completely for the whole duration, days or weeks. I can't tell if it's because it's just a generally noisier environment than my fully treated listening room /home office I spend a lot of time in, or if it's lower stress, or a combination of both.

It's definitely worse in my treated (absorption panels) listening room than in the rest of the house.

I have a hepa filter whose fan noise can drown it out to some degree.

I do think it's attention related as well. I can definitely make it worse by paying attention to it, which means I can also make it better by trying to ignore it! Easier said than done, of course.

On the attention point, when listening to music the tinnitus  can be so distracting that I can't enjoy the music at all. But I also find that if I'm completely immersed in a particular recording, it can go away completely. Bliss. So in way it's forced me to try harder to get to that place we all strive for in my listening sessions

That's my experience so far. I was very discouraged at the start but I have figured out ways to manage. Hope this helps you.

Colin. Insta @act4audio
{Ortofon 2m Blue > U-Turn Orbit > Eros 2} & {Roon Ropieee RPi4 > hifiberry-digi2-pro > ANK DAC 2.1} > Moreplay > {SVS_SB-1000 (x3)} & {diy kegger design kt88 SET} > Magnepan .7


Offline Larpy

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Reply #3 on: April 29, 2024, 09:38:10 AM
I've had tinnitus, primarily in my left ear, for decades.  I'm in my early 60s, and unfortunately I mistreated my ears throughout my 20s and 30s (frequent loud concerts, both as a spectator and a guitar player).  By my 40s I developed constant tinnitus.  It's never gone away but, and this is the hopeful part, it's either gotten better over the years or my brain has adjusted to it and allows me to tune much of it out.  If I listen for it, it's there 24/7, but much of the time I don't really notice it.

The brain is able to accommodate change astonishingly well.  I can no longer hear above 10K Hz (and at 10K my hearing sensitivity is down a good 20 dBs), but it hasn't changed my enjoyment of music.

I hope your hearing damage isn't permanent but if it is, don't despair:  give it some time and you're likely to find it gets subjectively better.

Larry


Offline denti alligator

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Reply #4 on: April 29, 2024, 09:48:22 AM
Thanks, everyone. My only hope is that my ears are still a bit sensitive, and I‘m hoping this is a sign they still need to heal. After healing, maybe the ringing will subside? I‘m eagerly awaiting my ENT visit.

- Sam

Rega P3-24 (w/AT 150MLX) w/Groovetracer upgrades / Eros II / FLAC >J.River >DSD256 >Gustard X20 / Moreplay > Stereomour II / Klipsch Forte II w/Crites upgrades / C4S S.E.X. 2.0 +Nickel MQ Iron / Speedball Crack / Sennheiser HD600 w/Cardas cable


Offline Paul Joppa

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Reply #5 on: April 29, 2024, 10:53:26 AM
TTS (Temporary Threshold Shift) can take as long as a few weeks to recover baseline hearing. Here's a review article from PubMed:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4988324/

Paul Joppa


Offline Jay

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Reply #6 on: April 29, 2024, 04:40:13 PM
google "NAC and tinnitus".  NAC is n-acetyl-L-cysteine
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30653365/
« Last Edit: April 29, 2024, 04:41:49 PM by Jay »

Jay L.


Offline denti alligator

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Reply #7 on: May 18, 2024, 09:27:38 AM
Thanks, everyone, for your responses. It‘s been almost eight weeks now, and no relief. I saw an ENT, who prescribed prednisone for a week. I‘m tapering off now. No change. If anything, it‘s worse. I tried listening to a record yesterday, at low to moderate volume. It hurt. And afterwards the ringing increased. If it goes on like this, it will definitely be a curse of sorts. There‘s certainly no point in having nice-sounding equipment if I can‘t appreciate it, let alone turn it on. I‘m troubled by how quickly this happened, and how dramatic the change. If this is the new normal, my life will have to change dramatically—and in a bad way.

- Sam

Rega P3-24 (w/AT 150MLX) w/Groovetracer upgrades / Eros II / FLAC >J.River >DSD256 >Gustard X20 / Moreplay > Stereomour II / Klipsch Forte II w/Crites upgrades / C4S S.E.X. 2.0 +Nickel MQ Iron / Speedball Crack / Sennheiser HD600 w/Cardas cable


Offline Larpy

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Reply #8 on: May 18, 2024, 12:38:24 PM
That's horrible.  I've suffered from moderate tinnitus most of my life, but what you describe sounds unimaginable even to me.  I am so sorry.  I know from personal experience how devastating it is to go to an ENT and have him or her offer only what I call the "physician's shrug."

You've probably already done this but, if not, seek out the various tinnitus user forums on the web.  You'll find not just sympathy but empathy, a community that won't make you feel so alone.

Larry


Offline dth31

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Reply #9 on: May 19, 2024, 06:15:34 AM
You have my sincere sympathy. I also wrestle with tinnitus.

There seems to be a consensus that most ENT doctors and audiologists do not do a good job helping people with their tinnitus. You really need to find an audiologist who specializes in tinnitus treatments. Tinnitus usually can’t be cured but there are treatments that can help many people. Here are some of the useful resources I’ve found.

https://youtu.be/mrip5LDL--A?si=YHUCDZbIB9bFopIy
ata.org

The health care provider link on the American Tinnitus Association website is particularly useful for finding providers with an interest in treating people with tinnitus:
https://www.ata.org/find-your-healthcare-provider/

Hope this helps.



Offline maryc27182

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Reply #10 on: May 22, 2024, 08:38:23 AM
Thanks, everyone, for your responses. It‘s been almost eight weeks now, and no relief. I saw an ENT, who prescribed prednisone for a week. I‘m tapering off now. No change. If anything, it‘s worse. I tried listening to a record yesterday, at low to moderate volume. It hurt. And afterwards the ringing increased.

Hang in there. Prednisone itself, especially at doses that require a taper, can make tinnitus worse (hopefully a temporary worsening, since pred is prescribed very often for tinnitus.) Prednisone, if you haven't taken it before, has other unpleasant side effects (for me, I get rage, feelings of doom, and insane hunger. Oh, and insomnia. Thank goodness I haven't gotten the tinnitus side effect from pred.)

If you aren't averse to Reddit, there is a subreddit for tinnitus that may be useful. Let me see if this forum will let me link Reddit...

https://www.reddit.com/r/tinnitus/

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Offline denti alligator

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Reply #11 on: June 02, 2024, 02:51:28 AM
Thanks, everyone. Not improvement yet, but I have an appointment with an ATA recommended specialist near the end of the month.

- Sam

Rega P3-24 (w/AT 150MLX) w/Groovetracer upgrades / Eros II / FLAC >J.River >DSD256 >Gustard X20 / Moreplay > Stereomour II / Klipsch Forte II w/Crites upgrades / C4S S.E.X. 2.0 +Nickel MQ Iron / Speedball Crack / Sennheiser HD600 w/Cardas cable