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Old 02-17-2006, 01:31 PM   #1
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jennlynn HB User
Few Questions About Tinnitus

Hi everyone

I developed an ear infection after Christmas and shortly after my ear started ringing. That lasted about a week and a half (during which I had my baby). Then it just all of a sudden went away for about 2 weeks then came back. Anyway, I still have it and have went to see a few doctors. Last doctor prescribed steroids and klonipen (for anxiety) and said that if that didn't help, we would look into hearing aids. My hearing loss is very little. I was just wondering if anyone has gotten a hearing aid just for their tinnitus and if it really helped? Do you ever just hear quiet? I am only 29 and not very happy about using a hearing aid, but if it works I guess it is worth it. I guess I should mention that the tinnitus is my only symptom.

Has anyone used a tinnitus masker that is made like a hearing aid and do they work?

I was also wondering how loud the ringing is to different people. Mine is usually not that bad with noise but in a totally quiet room it drives me crazy. For example, do you hear it over tv(at a normal volume) and how do you mask it out at night.

Also has anyone had luck with any types of drugs decreasing or eliminating the tinnitus? Anyone ever have it just go away?
Sorry this is so long but any help is appreciated.
Jennifer

 
Old 02-20-2006, 04:43 AM   #2
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Andrea Love HB User
Re: Few Questions About Tinnitus

Hi there, iv had a similiar problem. Had an ear infection in November which has left me with hissing in ear. I am presently paying to see a private ENT specialist. He has tried steroids and histamine tabs but so far I still have the hissing. He thinks its cochlear related. Dont worry about the time you have had this as Iv been told it can take months to settle but it mostly goes away. Iv learned to switch off when I go to bed by thinking of other things to block out the noise. Its very frustrating and can vary in sound from very quiet to so loud I can hear it when trying to watch tv etc. I am only 37 and like you would love to be able to sit in a quiet room without this affliction. Hang in there and hopefully it will get better.

 
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Old 02-20-2006, 03:46 PM   #3
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Re: Few Questions About Tinnitus

Hi Andrea
Is your noise just in the ear that had the infection or in both? Mine was just in the infected ear but has now started in the other and seems so much louder. It is driving me crazy and making me depressed. My doctor doesn't seem too hopeful that it will just go away. He gave me elavil for the depression but it lists ringing in the ears as a possible side effect so I am wondering if I should even take it. Thanks for replying and I hope you feel better soon.
Jennifer

 
Old 02-21-2006, 11:46 AM   #4
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Re: Few Questions About Tinnitus

Hi Jennylynn, the hissing is just in the ear that had the infection. Some days it diminishes until I can only hear it if I really listen. Today it is very bad and is driving me insane. I keep asking about the possibility of this remaining but keep getting told I havent had the problem long and it can take a long time to go away. I have a lot of pressue in my ear and also have a slight tmj problem which doesnt help either. I dont know if i would take the tabs for the depression. I think you need to ask now to get referred for a white noise hearing aid and counselling. How long have you had the problem? What is a middle ear infection or an inner ear?

 
Old 02-21-2006, 12:25 PM   #5
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gloria2936 HB User
Re: Few Questions About Tinnitus

Hi Jennifer,

I think we spoke on another post but just wanted to add a few things.

As you know my tinnitus started with an ear infection, but I ended up with bigger problems than just tinnitus (probably vestibular neurosis) so I don't want you to compare yourself with me.

My neurotogist told me that in most cases the tinnitus will resolve itself, but takes time. I know of someone who had it after an ear infection and it just went away like that after 6 months (she had pressure too). My mother-in-law too had an ear infection and afterwards had fluid in her ear for 2 months with tinnitus and then little by little it went away. Lizzy33 on the boards had VN and says her's went after 14/15 months.

I unfortunately still have mine and yes, it is in both ears even though I had the infection in my right ear. I have symptoms in both ears.

The steriod spray (flonase only made my problem worse). The klonepin helped with anxiety, but took a couple months to really work. My tinnitus is very loud and I can hear it most times over the television.

I asked about the tinnitus masker, but I have excellent hearing so I was told that it would only make my hearing sound muffled. If it works for you, I'd try it. I'm 34 and don't really care what I look like if I feel better.

As for sleeping at night, not much I can do. I just make sure I'm really tired and then I fall asleep easier. The klonepin made it easier to fall asleep after a few months of taking it as it has a sedative effect.

Try and relax as you haven't had it that long and most likely it will go. Try and stay positive as it could be much worse with other things like dizziness, headache, pressure, etc... You will find you will get over it quicker if you can try and stay calm. I know how hard it is as I have complained to everyone on this board for a year about it.

Best - Gloria

 
Old 02-21-2006, 07:24 PM   #6
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Re: Few Questions About Tinnitus

Hi Andrea
My problem started 3 days after Christmas. Initially I was told that I had swimmers ear, but after all the swelling went down I had fluid around my ear drum so I think that would be a middle ear infection. I only went to the ER for the infection. I dont see my dr again for six weeks so I am going to give it some time and if it is not better by then I am going to ask about a masker. At my last visit, he mentioned a regular hearing aid but after another audiogram, he isn't sure that I have enough of a hearing loss to be helped by a hearing aid.

Hi Gloria
I am trying to stay positive and keep hoping that it will go away. The klonopen has helped me get some sleep but I think I am going to try the elavil because I am starting to wonder if I may have a bit of postpartum depression and it is just making all this that much harder. I see my OB tomorrow so I'll see what he thinks.
Thanks and I hope you both feel better soon
Jennifer

 
Old 02-22-2006, 01:15 AM   #7
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Andrea Love HB User
Smile Re: Few Questions About Tinnitus

Hi Jennifer, your doc may think it is a bit soon to give you any sort of masker but it is worth asking about anyway. The masker Im referring to is a white noise masker. It works best for people with no or very slight hearing loss. The masker is like a hearing aid but puts a sound in your ear very similiar to the one heard with your tinnitus. This retrains your brain to listen to the new sound and block out the tinnitus. William Shatner the actor used this and after two months his tinnitus didnt bother him at all. I dont know if it works for everyone but its worth thinking about. I have so far managed without any medication for my sleep but do feel very depressed about the situation. I am into my fourth month of this nightmare and feel that nothing much has changed for me. After the ear infection settled the first time I was still able to drive a car without the pressure I now feel in my ear. Since just before christmas things have become a nightmare and I cannot travel by car. I am stuck at home with virtually no life at the moment. If the tube would function properly to my ear I feel my situation would improve in leaps and bounds. If you havent had any of these problems I think your ear will settle down soon and hopefully the tinnitus will reduce until its non existent.

Hope you feel better soon. Andrea

 
Old 02-22-2006, 01:41 PM   #8
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Re: Few Questions About Tinnitus

Hi Andrea, How long after your infection did the other symptoms start? Did it go away and come back again? I have felt a little light headed from time to time but nothing major. I feel that has been due to not sleeping well. I do have a little pressure in my ears and the pop all the time. Sometimes they just feel funny, especially the right one (infection was in the left one)
I don't know how to explain it other than maybe if you have ever had something go off really loud by your ear, like a gun or fireworks, it's kind of like that feeling. I hope you all are right and that my tinnitus will just go away. I feel kind of whiney complaining about tinnitus when it seems everyone on here has it worse. I think my depression is just making everything seem so much worse than it is. I just keep thinking things like 'will I ever be able to read to my daughter in a quiet room? and will I ever be able to snuggle up to her and go to sleep without a ton of noise around? I know it seems silly but thats what bothers me most. I think you are right about my doctor thinking its too soon for a lot of things. Last time I saw him he told me that I was only six week into this and to not give up hope.
That is really interesting about William Shatner. Worth looking into.
Take Care,
Jennifer

 
Old 02-23-2006, 06:34 AM   #9
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Re: Few Questions About Tinnitus

Hey Jennifer,

Don't ever feel whinny as I have lived with severe head and ear pain, pressure, funky ear feeling, fluttering feeling in my ear, dizziness and severe vision problems, etc. for over a year and to be honest, it is the tinnitus that really gets me down. Look at some of my posts. It is always the tinnitus I complain about.

Your feelings are normal as I have a small child and our bedtime routine was always to read a story and then I lay with him a few minutes before he falls asleep. Sometimes I dread that and every night I come back down stairs depressed as I hate the noise in my head.

You haven't had it that long and there is a good chance it will just go. Do try and relax. I started seeing a therapist because of this and she told me to give myself a half an hour a day to mourn for myself and then try and get on with my day. It really worked as now I pretty much just go with the flow as it gets worse when I spend the whole day upset.

Take care,
Gloria

Last edited by gloria2936; 02-23-2006 at 06:35 AM.

 
Old 02-23-2006, 11:10 AM   #10
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Andrea Love HB User
Smile Re: Few Questions About Tinnitus

Hello Jennylynn, Gloria is right although the tinnitus is the worse sympton you do get used to it in a way and manage to cope. I too miss the bedtime routine with my son as we used to snuggle up together and talk about his day at school etc for half an hour before bedtime. A friend of mine lost her hearing for nearly a year before she was diagnosed with ms. She had a constant buzzing in her ear and this eventually went away after a year. So we should never give us hope, its a time thing and unfortunately, the ear seems to take a long time to heal. Hang in there.

Andrea

 
Old 02-24-2006, 10:26 PM   #11
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sangale HB User
Re: Few Questions About Tinnitus

One month ago I woke up with a sound in both ears, something like steam or air. I was sent for a hearing test and the dr told me I had lost 50% of my hearing. I thought it was strange because I could hear everything. I went to another doc and based on the hearing exam I had taken he said I had lost 70%. Then I developed a strong sensitivity to some sounds that seemed to go right through me. I looked it up and it seemed to fit the diagnosis of hyperacusis although one doctor said I didn't have it. I couldn't talk on cellphones and even normal phones I had to hold the phone away from my ear. It drove me crazy. I finally went to a 3rd doctor who said he felt the test was bad and I should repeat it. The first 2 doctors said I should immediately get hearing aids. Well, I was recommended to another doctor, repeated the test which came out about the same but he said it was mild to moderate loss. He said if I had lost 50-70% I wouldn't be able to hear him talking. I still hear mostly everything, I'm still in denial and haven't gotten aids yet; I still have tinnitus which I don't understand why some days I don't notice it and other days it really is bad and makes me nervous, and I still have that hyperacusis or whatever it is, but it has calmed down a bit. I don't know where this came from because prior to one month ago I never seemed to have had any hearing problems...the doctors say it is age related neurosensorial hearing loss (I am 61). They say to mask the tinnitus put some classical music at night or get one of the waterfalls...I haven't done anything yet. Anyway sorry to go on and on, but that's my story. And since my diagnosis, I seem to be hearing less...or rather, more sounds seem 'muffled', now even in the movies.

 
Old 02-26-2006, 06:40 AM   #12
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Re: Few Questions About Tinnitus

sangale, that must be so frustrating just to wake up and have hearing loss for no apparent reason.

Have any of you found that things like caffeine, alcohol, too much salt aggravate the tinnitus? I have had almost no caffeine since I've had this because I read that it can make it worse and I really need a cup of coffee in the mornings. My baby girl is down to sleeping two hours at a time and she doesn't want to go back to sleep once she's up.
Thanks
Jennifer

 
Old 02-28-2006, 01:35 AM   #13
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Andrea Love HB User
Re: Few Questions About Tinnitus

Hi Jenny, caffeine does aggrivate tinnitus but I think you would be ok with one cup. Could you not try decaf or half decaf instead? Salt makes it worse and it affects the circulation in your inner ear. I think it depends on what is causing the tinnitus what effect these things have you.

Hang on in there. Andrea

 
Old 03-01-2006, 05:22 AM   #14
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Crazymotorbiker HB User
Re: Few Questions About Tinnitus

Hey,

Ive had a few ear infections and afterwards they all left me with some ringing. But it only lasted for a few months then subsided. So don't worry, it'll all clear up, just give it time and don't worry about it too much. The stress you create will only make it worse.

I've now got permanent tinitus, after going to a loud concert. At first it drove me crazy, so i know what it feels like, but after a while i stopped listening for it, now i don't really hear it at all.

Sleeping at nights really easy as well. You just have to shut off. Don't lie there listening to it. At first i used to leave a radio on between stations, so that it produced white noise. That really helped. But after a while i just didn't hear it anymore. Its still there though, hissing away like some demented snake.

Don't worry to much about it. Because its caused by an ear infection, theres a very big chance it will go.

Shaun.

 
Old 03-02-2006, 12:18 PM   #15
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jennlynn HB User
Re: Few Questions About Tinnitus

Hi Crazymotorbiker

Thank you. You have given me hope. One question, after your infections, did the ringing stay in one ear or did it ever go to the other. Mine has went into the other ear as well, sometimes worse than the infected ear. That is what has puzzled me the most. And I am sure you are right about the stress making it worse because I feel like I am consumed by this darn noise. Oh another quesion. What was the longest that yours lasted?
Thanks
Jennifer

 
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