Tinnitus and Helpful Links
I began the whole tinnitus malarkey in 1997. It just appeared as a horrid whistling noise in the ear whilst watching T.V. It took me forty eight hours to realise that is was more than a nasty noise in the ear. I got most of my information from the internet as my doctor at the time told me to ignore the sound and that it would go away. It didn’t though. I became completely obsessed with the sound in my ears as it threatened my love of music and all that I held precious in life.
What is tinnitus anyway?
The word 'tinnitus' comes from the Latin word for 'ringing' and is the perception of sound in the absence of any corresponding external sound. This noise may be heard in one ear, in both ears or in the middle of the head or it may be difficult to pinpoint its exact location. The noise may be low, medium or high‑pitched. There may be a single noise or two or more components. The noise may be continuous or it may come and go.
What causes tinnitus?
Tinnitus is not a disease or an illness, it is a symptom generated within a person's own auditory pathways. Although it is often assumed that tinnitus occurs as a result of disease of the ears, this is often not the case. The precise cause of tinnitus is still not fully understood.
Who gets tinnitus?
Experiences of tinnitus are very common in all age groups, especially following exposure to loud noise; however, it is unusual for it to be a major problem. There is a widely held misconception that tinnitus is confined to the elderly, but various studies have shown that it can occur at any age, even in quite young children. Mild tinnitus is common ‑ about 10 per cent of the population have it all the time and, in up to one per cent of adults, this may affect the quality of their life.
What to do if you think you have tinnitus?
Tinnitus is rarely an indication of a serious disorder, but it is wise to see your doctor if you think you might have it. Should something treatable be causing it, you may be referred to a specialist
The noises may seem worse if you are anxious or stressed. When tinnitus starts, particularly if it's sudden, you may naturally be frightened and your concentration or your sleep may be disturbed. You may get angry and frustrated because no‑one else understands, or you may live alone and not have anyone to talk to about it - seek out help as soon as possible.
Many people say they notice tinnitus less when they are doing something. Keeping your mind occupied helps (but don't overdo things). If the noises seem louder at quiet times, particularly during the night, it may help to have soothing music or some other environmental or natural sound quietly on in the background.
Practising relaxation and taking time out for yourself can also be a great.
I discovered back in the late 90’s that masking was of great help and wore a white noise inhibitor for a year until my tinnitus ‘normailised’. I also found whilst working in my studio that if you were to imitate the correct note as your tinnitus, then it cancelled it. I also found that very high frequencies above normal human hearing capability (as your same tinnitus note) also helped. I am at this moment producing nice CD’s with ambient music for free download for any sufferers out there. I will post them as soon as I check there helpfulness. After all, it is a disability and I’d be a bitch if I charged.
MOST IMPORTANTLY, FOR THOSE EXPOSED TO LOUD NOISE, MUSICIAN OR NOT, WEAR EAR PROTECTION
American Tinnitus Association: http://www.ata.org/
Tinnitus Bulletin Board: http://tinnitussupport92262.yuku.com/
The British TinnitusAssociation: http://www.tinnitus.org.uk/
Tinnitus Retraining Therapy:- http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0079612307660403
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