Anyone successful in dealing with Tinnitus?

I have been experiencing ringing in my ears and think I may have it. Any recommendations?
"Quietus" is being touted as a fix for this problem.

www. quietrelief. com

I hope this is real...
My dr recommended this. Make sure you go to an ENT expert. S/he should do a full hearing work up and maybe even an MRI just to rule out something awful.
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Yes, too many years of construction work and loud car stereos. Dr. Elizabeth is right. BTW my days of loud music have been over for years. I have a db meter right next to me and use it. The slight ringing is like pops and clicks on vinyl. You just deal with it.
3 or 4 years ago I started having issues with occassional ringing in the ears. Too many concerts and amp/eqs in the cars I owned in my younger days.
I now wear hearing protection - for all power tools.....yard work.... and play my stereo at moderate levels at most. I also purchased a pair of musician ear plugs that cut the sound level considerably. Now I can attend concerts without blasting my ear drums and having my ears ringing for hours. I only wish I was smarter with my ears in my younger days. So far so good and my ears stopped ringing. Best wishes
Having delt with a malady for decades I agree all to readily with Elizabeth. Once one gets beyond the standard deviation medicine is trial and error. Your trials the doctors errors, training new doctors to understand what is happening and what works is wearisome but anything else is even worse.
One gets to know what works for one and why with luck even a doctor can be taught.
Elizabeth is correct I agree. No one knows more than the person that deals with it daily , weekly , yearly and into decades. Having gone through a situation myself Uru975 I could not agree more with you. Luckily I now have a practitioner who listens and learns and is great about the fact all the years of medical school do not equate to every individual the same. Cheers!
I found reducing stress, eating right, exercising, all that old-fashioned stuff helped my case.
If your taking any medications,check with your doctor and see if any of them could be causing it.Also,ask your pharmacist since they may keep up with the meds than doctors might.Years back they gave me something(I can't remember what)that caused it while I took it.
There was a terrific article in the New Yorker a few months back written by one of their writers (Jerome Groopman of the Beth Israel Hospital/Harvard Med)who happens to be a world famous AIDs researcher and has written many books on health care.

Here is the link:
Alcohol and caffeine as well as some pain meds can make it worse so managing (reducing) the use these substances can help ..... I have tinnitus (left ear) as well and have learned to manage it ....
My doctor told me listen to music - "it will cover up the ringing". This was actually a major victory, because my wife told me the ringing was **because** I listen to too much music ;-)

I have noticed that my tinnitus comes and goes with more or less caffeine. I am curious whether the Quietus stuff actually works, though not curious enough to try it myself . . .
Has anyone tried the free online software that generates various tones you are supposed to listen to via headphones/earbuds to help tinnitus? Here's the link.
Keeping your ears clean can help as excess ear wax build up can make tinnitus worse ....
Lots of causes--you need a good ENT evaluation--after that then possible treatments--none of which are terrific---need ENT to evaluate ----to make sure you don't have an acoustic neuroma etc --Rich M.D.
'"Quietus" [...] I hope this is real...'

It's homeopathic, which is means absolutely worthless.
Stereophile had it in their website news : "url=]Neuromonics Tinnitus Breakthrough?[/url].
I just read an article that suggested this: Put your palms left and right over both of your ears with your fingers behind your skull. Put your index finger over your middle finger and slide the index finger so it taps the back of your head and makes a drumming sound. Do this fifty times a day. This is not a joke....
I didn't notice my ears were ringing until I read this thread.

No, actually, I notice my problem is directly related to exposure to loud noises: city sounds, loud music, other things. If I try to avoid these for a few days, I notice the ringing subsides and my apparent hearing acuity and enjoyment of listening to music improves.

Give up caffine AND alchohol? Maybe giving up one would make it easier to give up the other...
Thanks Dr Rich.

I did just that a while back, and my dr explained what he was looking for when he ordered an MRI. Once he saw that the MRI was fine and the ear itself (drum, canal, etc.) were fine, he said it's something I will have to live with. Aspirin and nicotine (neither of which I take/use) are triggers, by the way.
One thing I've never read about is the different levels of Tinnitus. By looking at commercials, one would think that to have Tinnitus is akin to having a high-decibel audio tone ripping through your head 24/7. And maybe, for some, it is. I've had it for decades but it's always been a very low-level type of ring. So low that it isn't audible if ANY audible sound is present, such as conversation, TV. or audio appreciation ;) is happening. Only in moments of total silence, like when I go to sleep, is it noticable to me. But not ever to the point of hampering me, I sleep like a baby. Would I rather not have Tinnitus? Of course, but I guess I've been lucky.

I'd be curious to hear from other audiophiles as to the 'level' of their affliction.
Newbrook--you are welcome--there seems to be some doc hostility on this thread--people get very frustrated with tinnitus because there aren't any miracle cures and more research would help as well as educating the public about noise--the ipod generation is already developing hearing loss at an earlier age . People like Elizabeth who sounds liked she has traumatic tinnitus have to adjust to this sudden problem without any good treatment and the masking devices are no picnic so we can understand her frustration. However, not getting an appropriate work up and finding out that one now has an inoperable tumor would really be a tragedy. Rich
I am a bit hesitant to enter this discussion because I am a research physician, but I have had this problem for about three years. Rich is correct: one possible cause is a tumor either in the nerve from the ear or in the brain. An MRI exam should find these; surgery may be possible. My problem was from a blood clot that "knocked out" the nerve from my right ear, only partially. There is good research ongoing at MIT/Harvard if you want to look into it. People have occasionally had tinnitus reduced by a large number of different drugs, but no one drug works for everyone. Elizabeth is partly right; many of the drugs that have worked have effects on the brain such as sedation which can be unpleasant. Above comments about aspirin, Tylenol, alcohol, etc., making it worse are also true for many of us. And, you can "learn to live with it", but it can be very annoying in quiet settings especially when you want to listen to music. I have been using headphones a lot recently, and I have found that listening at loud volumes seems to make it worse for the next several days.
i'm in the same symptomatic boat as chazro, and at 36yrs old its a concern. when i saw the ear Dr, he said, its life, its with you, but try not to make it worse.

ie: i no longer use power tools / lawn equipment without hearing protection. its not the stereo that kills your rig wont hit 100db, but my lawnmower? concerts? absolutely, and that's where you need to use protection.
I enjoy a fine cigar every evening. I do notice the increase in tinnitus after the cigar.
I'd be curious to hear from other audiophiles as to the 'level' of their affliction.
Mine isn't noticeable except when there is no other sound. Music masks it perfectly, but in a quiet room it's there, and in varying degrees I assume caused by what I'm consuming (ie how much coffee). I don't play my stereo loud enough to aggravate it - my normal listening levels are in the ~80-85db range max.
Two months ago I had the flu, blew my nose too hard and since then have had a pulsing vibration in my right ear. Went to an ENT no tumors or closed down arteries so now I'll start changing medications and see if this helps. I'm listening at lower levels now, down from 75-85db to 60-75db. Inserting a foam ear plug when not listening to music helps to reduce the intensity of the vibration and sometimes seems to eliminates it!! The vibration is similar to the pulse of the bass in a loud car audio system thumping it's way down the street!!! So one of the things I dislike the most is now something I feel/hear pulsing constantly, life's strange.
I thought I might be getting it intermittently, until I realized it disappeared when I turned off a ceiling fan.
This is my first post on this subject on the 'Gon. I'm not sure as to what the severity of my tinnitus is, as I have not seen an ENT about it. I've had tinnitus for about two years now. Root causes are: operating lawn equipment with no hearing protection when I was a teen; loud concerts; listening to the stereo too loud; and possibly (?) road noise. I've since taken measures to minimize these harmful things. The ringing is always there, but its level fluctuates. Things that seem to make the ringing louder are: road noise from inside the car; any high-speed fan such as a bathroom ventilator; playing the stereo too loud; and to a lesser extent stress, not getting a good night's sleep, caffeine and alcohol. Always seems to be worse in the evening/better in the morning. I'd like to throw out a few questions to those of you with tinnitus:

(1) Anyone find that road noise inside the car bothers your tinnitus? What do you do about it? I currently wear soft earplugs everytime I get in the car, as I have a long commute, but I'm worried that this is pushing earwax further into the ear canal. (side note: bring a decibel reader inside your car and see what the level is when going 70 mph. you might be surprised. mine showed 85-90 db)

(2)Does your stereo seem to aggravate your tinnitus? If so, did you make changes to your stereo? What changes? Did the changes help?

(3) How long/how often can you listen to your stereo before your ears say "enough!"

Thanks for your consideration.
I recently cut out my morning coffee routine, and this does seem to have helped.

My stereo listening level never goes above 75-80 dB on peaks. My bum gets sore long before my ears do.

Your thoughts on car noise are interesting. Ear plugs impacting wax should not be an issue, if your ears are clean. The over the counter Murine kit is easy to use, though it may require repeated application, and it is not unlikely that reducing wax buildup helps with Tinnitus.

Listening fatigue (and possibly, Tinnitus) can likely be ameliorated by gear choices. For me, getting rid of metal drivers and moving to silk dome tweeter and paper mid-bass helped. "Hard-sounding" SS electronics might also be an issue.

Good luck, everybody!

I don't think this has been mentioned, and am not at all sure what value-worth this info has.

Years ago, I had this problem as well, a ringing in my ears. After working 30 years in a railroad yard, I think many can understand why.

I seen a ear doctor, he cleaned me ears, and suggested mega doses of Niacinamide, as there seemed to be some promise from some that were afflicted. I remember him saying one possible downside to taking Niacinamide, was flushing of the face.

I took the supplement for about 3 months, and don't honestly recall results from taking it, but after awhile, the severity of tinnitus seemed to recede to where only on a rare occasion do I hear some slight ringing for a few minutes at a time. Mark
FWIW: The human body, after all, is a machine and machines make noise when they function.

I remember sensing "noise from within" as I lay in bed (around 5 years old). I asked my Mother about its source and she had no answer.

I am hearing this same noise as I write and deem it "residual noise from electrical activity in my body".

I think Tinnitus must be this noise on steroids.

BTW, does anyone hear perfect silence?
Elizabeth, I am one of the morons they call a Doctor and I have tinnitus and love my music. Essentially. as you say, it is untreatable as things stand. That, by the way is not Doctor's fault. It is if they charge you large amounts of money with no results, but then I work in the NHS in the UK, so that does'nt apply.
Some simple observations of country doctor who has been working for 30 years. There really is no substitute for experience.
1) Symetrical tinnitus developing in your 50's 60's, is unlikely to be clinically significant. It represents hair cell degeneration in the Cochlea, usually, but not always accompanied with some hearing loss, mine is'nt. As it is degenerative and you can'nt transplant cochlears, there is no great cure on the horizon. I offer to refer to ENT specialists, but say to my patients, they are unlikely to offer any help.
2) Unilateral tinnitus is, in my view always worth investigating with an MRI, to exclude a benign tumour called an Acoustic Neuroma
3) Most people are'nt that troubled by tinnitus as it is a constant sensory input. To insult you all with some grade school philosophy of perception, the brain is designed to seek change in sensory input, not constant ones. You need to see the Tiger walking through the trees, not the trees.
4) A few people are driven absolutely crazy by tinnitus, to the point of suicide. That is very difficult. The definitive solution is surgical ablation of the Cochlea, but it makes you stone deaf of course. You can try white noise generators, they may help a bit. There are newer behavioural theray techniques, that are said to help, I have no experience with them
5) and most important, if you have tinnitus, AVOID EXPOSURE TO LOUD NOISE. I shouted so you would hear. Tinnitus sufferers are very sensitive, in my view, to further deterioration due to noise exposure. So be careful if you enjoy live Heavy Metal.
I would also be careful about ear syringing for wax. I have seen it start or worsen tinnitus, I do'nt know why.
Lecture over, let me know if you disagree
All affected should be aware that there is research to regrow cochlear hair, and so far researchers have been successful in growing more (not re-growing after apoptosis or complete deafness) cochlear hair in mice (a mammal) as of 2-3 years ago, under certain laboratory conditions. They know regeneration is possible, and therefore there is hope.

See and

Do you have an alternative to syringing for ear wax? I've not had the experience of it aggravating tinnitus, and it certainly improves my hearing, if done from time to time.

Ack there you go, simple country Doctors do'nt know all the latest research. The Cochlear hair growth project sounds interesting, though as you know it is probably a long way from day to day clinical application.

john I try to advise tinnitus sufferers not to get syringed. An ENT colleague has confirmed he has seen the same result from syringing, on occasion. I tend to recommend warmed olive oil repeated for over a week. That can be interspersed with baking soda in a little water, though that can cause reactions in the ear, as can many of the proprietry brands of wax softeners you can buy at your pharmacy. If that fails you can go for simple aural toilet, where you use a little hoover gadget to clear out the ear.
I've been to three dr.s and one told me that ear plugs make it worse. Well, I had been wearing those for years at work and I stopped. I did notice some improvement. I started wearing noise suppression headphones and that helped further. (If you're a tradesperson, these are highly recommended) There is a therapy available (neuromonics) but it's $5k and not covered by insurance.

>>1) Symetrical tinnitus developing in your 50's 60's, is unlikely to be clinically significant. It represents hair cell degeneration in the Cochlea, usually, but not always accompanied with some hearing loss, mine is'nt.<<

This statement seems impossible.How could you hear a test frequency when your ringing ears are masking it.I went to one ENT group years back and saw the equipment used for the hearing test and could say it was of poor quality.They said they only need to test the few frequencies that were printed out on the paper they gave me.If your ringing isn't in this this limited test range,it may give the illusion you have no hearing loss.If they changed the standards to high quality tests and equipment,there may be a lot of more accurate results.Apparently,if more money was to be made in this type of medical research,with more profit returns for the pharmaceutical and other interests involved,there might be better help for the affected people.
What I was trying to say to sufferers is that symetrical tinnitus is unlikely to represent serious pathology and therefore not to be concerned regarding their health, not that they shouuld'nt worry about the tinnitus.
You are right that audiograms are pretty unsophisticated and if you look hard enough you will find high tone hearing loss, because everyone develops that with age. Therefore everyone in their 60's has hearing loss. The days of my hearing up to 20000hz is long gone,if they ever existed, I will be lucky to get to 14000.
I would put to you Hifitime, what does more sensitive testing get you, but to confirm this high tone loss, which is at present untreatable, except with crude hearing aide devices, which even at there best, often cause more problems than they solve. I take your point, that more research would be done in this area if there was more money in it. That's capitalism for you, we believe in that in the UK as much as you do.
Many concerts and loud pounding music on headphones. Luckily, I have what I would term mild tinnitus and have managed to nip it in the bud I think. Occassionally I'll get a semi loud blast from my left ear. But it goes away. In any other sense, I have excellent hearing, thank God. Same as Chazro. Same age same symptoms. I WILL NOT let it progress! In fact, I'm going to a metal concert on tuesday in a small brick venue with 8 of my friends and yes I will be wearing ear protection.

Oh hi I'm new here. Building my first hifi. Hopefully my first thread gets posted..... (wrote it last night, kinda puzzled as to why it's not up, I'm ready to buy!)
I have Hyperacusis along with Tinnitis. Are most of you the same way or is that less occurring?
I would say hyeracusis is unusual, but I have seen it. If you think of the physiology of hair cell damage, that could cause an impression of increased as well as reduced hearing
I have had tinitus for at least 15 years. As I type this in a quiet office I can hear it loudly in both is always a little louder in my right ear which also has a little more hearing loss. A cpl of years ago I read an article that stated the tones my be the brains way of substituting sound to compensate for the lost hearing. I don't know if that is true or not. My thinking is if the mind creates the noise the mind can overcome it.

I have found in my case that relaxing, taking a long hot bath with my ears below the water line, and concentrating on relaxing and reducing the noise through meditation can at times reduce it to the point where I have to concentrate to hear it. Mind over matter? I don't know, I don't even care, all I know is I can on occasion reduce the noise level substantially. I would not have believed it was possible a few years ago. My tinitus is not mild. I can hear it over normal conversation when it is at its worst.

For the record I am 50 and have been in construction my entire adult life with lots of loud music in my youth.
To all you naysayers out there: How can you be so sure hair cell degeneration in the Cochlea is the reason for your tinnitus? Is your tinnitus constant or does it come and go. Or at least increase or decrease? If it isn't constant doesn't it stand to reason that something you are doing is affecting your hearing? And if something is affecting your hearing, then shouldn't you have some control over the problem?
There is something called Cranial sacral fluid which, no surprise, goes up your spinal canal from your sacrum (a small triangular bone at the base of your spine) to your head. Dr. Fullford, an osteopathic doctor, found by unlocking children's sacrum, he could eliminate their terrible headaches.
Do your symptoms increase with stress? Stress causes the muscles to tighten and lock up the spine more. It also happens with age. Especially if you live the life of a blob or have had trauma to the spine.
I think each one of us might have different reasons that have brought our problem to the point where it is currently at. My tinnitus constantly increases or decreases along with my hyperacusis. There is probably not "one" common thing everyone could do to decrease there symptoms. At one point, I unplugged my stereo and thought I wouldn't be able to use it anymore. (a very low point) I'm doing fairly wll now as long as I'm careful in regards to noise exposure in "ANY" situation.
Cdc... What did you mean..."life of a blob"?
If there really is a cure, I too want to know about it. I have simply learned to live with it, and that is my best recommendation to you. It won’t kill you, it doesn’t hurt, and in fact it’s physically harmless. I know people who have let it emotionally and mentally consume them. My brother-in law wears a set of headphones all day long and listens to “different noise” to take his mind off the ringing. That’s just crazy. Get your mind right. Grasp the facts. You can still hear, you can still enjoy music, you can still conduct business and communicate, make love, laugh, run, jump, skip….It doesn’t have to be something that gets you down, hinders your lifestyle or preoccupies your thoughts. YOU ARE OKAY. Now, live your life…This is how I have beaten the damn thing! I hate to see anyone end up like my brother-in law.

By the way, my Tinnitus is so severe that I truly can’t “hear” the quite. If I go into the wilderness to a peaceful isolated place that is as quiet as things get on earth, I just can’t appreciate the lack of sound because of the damned ringing. This is one of the few times that the ringing really affects my lifestyle. At this point, I say #$%@ it, and I have a drink of my favorite medicinal and I take in the visual beauty of the setting. I still appreciate the serenity; I just don’t get to experience the phenomenon of silence.