My story!

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Hi everyone, I woke up this morning to a pleasant surprise: the ringing in my ears has stopped (not completely but hardly noticeable). I never blogged about it before today, but now I’d like to share my experience with everyone.

Background: I am 48 yr old female, healthy, married with 2 kids, and lives a good family and work life in Ontario-Canada.

Here’s my story: The ringing in my ears started 3 month ago after a dental surgery where my dentist cut a bridge and extracted tooth. Needless to say he drilled in my mouth for almost 2 hours. After the surgery he gave me Amoxicillin. Few days in taking Amoxicillin, I noticed this high cricket noise in my ears, I tried to ignore it first but it was so load and it freaked me out. I googled ‘ear ringing’ and to my surprise there IS such thing!. I never heard about tinnitus before.

Two weeks after my dental surgery, I underwent a scheduled surgery for ligaments reconstruction in my ankle (sport injury). After the surgery my tinnitus gotten even worse. I remember staying home in pain, not able to move, and have to listen to this constant ringing in my ears.

Living in Ontario where referral to ENT specialist takes a minimum of 5 month and after rolling out the obvious reasons like ear wax and hearing loss. I started my research, and I noticed that there are days where my tinnitus is better/worse. With some help via skype from my brother who’s ENT (but lives overseas), we developed a daily diary in Excel where we listed all factors that may affect tinnitus. I filled-in the sheet and rated each factor on daily basis and on scale from 1-10, along with my tinnitus level for the day. My Excel sheet included the following categories.

1- Medication I took for the day (to find any correction between my tinnitus and ototoxicity)

2- Food I ate (correlation between tinnitus and different food allergy mainly gluten for me due to family history)

3- Any stimulant I took (correlation between tinnitus and blood circulation). Mainly caffeine for me.

4- My allergy level for the day measured by skin itchiness, sinus congestion..) ( correlation with inflammation)

5- My inflammation level ( measured by how easily my ring can move around my figure or in and out)

6- My stress level for the day (since this is subjective, I ask my husband to rate me! He’s the one who deals with my temper anyway)

7- Exercised or not? ( blood circulation again)

8- My tinnitus level for the day, measured by level of suffering to fall asleep!

I recorded all the above factors on scale from 1 to 10. I kept recording for 2 month and then without running any ANOVA or any kind of statistical analysis, it was evident to me that my tinnitus went so much worse in 3 occasions where I took antibiotic ( Amoxicillin mainly) in conjunction with ibuprofen.

Also, my tinnitus was aggravated by eating bread (gluten allergy) and certain species (thyme and rosemary..)

It was worse on days where my inflammation went up (whether due to menstrual period coming, high intake of fat, or salt..)

It was worse on days when I was stressed out (my stress was due to my tinitus, so it was a vicious cycle)

Exercise helped, tinnitus was better on days when I walked 20 min. it helped me fall asleep faster and it enhanced my circulation.

Finally, I ran ANOVA in excel which conformed my doubts on the above correlations that I felt.

For last month and as a result of my analysis, this is what I did:

• I cut down on all medications even OTC. If I ever had to take medication I refer to the ototoxicity list (google it) to avoid any medication that causes ear poisoning.

• I cut coffee and tea completely (which was the hardest for me to do);

• I went on gluten free/ anti inflammation diet and exercised even a little every day .

• I cut from my diet any food/drink that is not natural (soda, sweetener, processed food..). I checked the ingredient list; if I cannot read it then I shouldn’t be eating it! (ototoxicity again)

• I changed my mind set toward tinnitus: I accepted it, made peace with it but I was determined

I will not let it rule my life.

• I was very vocal about it. I spoke to family members, and work colleagues. Sharing with others helped me manage my stress.

And viola today I am almost tinnitus free (cannot say 100%, because I still have a bit of ringing)

My approach was very scientific and I was diligent in finding out what makes my tinnitus worse. What helped me is some numerical analysis skills that I picked up from being engineer/financial modeler, and support of my husband, and my overseas brother (ENT) who helped me list all factors that may trigger/worsen tinnitus, and also to ask for tests to roll out some serious illnesses that may cause tinnitus.

Needless to say I did not get any of these tests but I got free audiology test which role out any hearing loss. During my 3 month ordeal I was not fortunate enough to see an ENT specialist because the waiting time ( 5 month). I went once to ER because the ringing was unbearable and deprived from my sleep. After waiting for hours, the ER doctor said there’s no ENT specialist on site but he assured me that my ears are not blocked from ear wax! And he gave me referral to an outside ENT specialist (i am still waiting to be called to schedule an appointment!). I was planning to go south (USA) and do the tests that I need, and pay for them, instead of waiting endlessly in Ontario. luckily I may not have to do it anymore.

My tinnitus started 15-Oct 2014 and ended today 18-jan-2015. I am almost free from tinnitus for 7 hours now and I cannot believe it!. Those who are with tinnitus I feel your pain. My advice to always listen your body and keep track of things that may affect your tinnitus. I encourage you to create a similar personalized diary and record factors that you think play a role in your tinnitus. You may not be able to stop it completely but you will be able to manage the intensity of it. I wish the best to all of you. God Bless.

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  • Posted

    Hi Sarakas!

    I'm happy that you got better. I followed a similar approach for a year, but found no correlations. I left out a very important factor: how many time I spend at home in my room. I got black mold on my window. I had about 10 other symptoms for 15 years, but they were mild until I made an indoor fountain, which increased the air humidity in my room. Since the limiting substrate is water by this mold, it started to grow and scatter its spores in the room, which I inhaled sometimes 24h/day, because I have a remote job. My health got worse week by week, and 6 weeks from setting up the fountain I finally solved the puzzle. I still have ringing, it's caused by an ear infection, but I think it will stop after the infection is gone, so I am happy now. I have sharp vision again, I can smell, I don't have allergy anymore, etc... :-)

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    • Posted

      I recently got rid of a lot of black mold that was in my washroom and windowsills. I currently have an ear infection which made ear ringing a problem and I hope it will stop soon too. Others say not to take an antibiotic but one list didn't include Amoxil just other types and I'm willing to try it because I can't see it getting louder than it already was with the infection. 

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  • Posted

    Good for you sarakas! My was noise induced so its a little different, but have habituated, so thats the only way out for my problem, God bless you and hope you heak 100%...
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  • Posted

    Thank you so very much for such an honest and detailed summary of your personal experience dealing with this invisible condition. It completely ruins many sufferer's lives but you really battled it and stayed positive. Well done! As anyone would, I wish you a full recovery.

    I know that my tinnitus is linked inextricably with my stress levels. There are many other factors at work too and as you say, the only way forward is to listen to your own body: what works for one person isn't guaranteed to work for everyone. That's the human body for you! Wonderfully made and prone to defects. The amazing thing isn't how fragile we are as human beings, but that our bodies don't go wrong more often. Oops, I may be heading into the realms of idle philosophizing now...

    Thanks again for sharing and good luck for a healthy future.

    Best wishes,

    Digsby

    x

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  • Posted

    You posted three days ago .i wondered if it had returned .I ask because I too have 

    "silent " days ,and then it returns, sometimes as a whisper,other times mega

     

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  • Posted

    Thank you all for your comments. So far so good, I still have a bit of ringing but it's not interfering with my day or preventing me from sleep. I forgot to mention that I also started taking Black Cohosh, it's a natural supplement and substitute for estrogen. it’s widely used here by pre/menopausal women. my tinnitus used to get louder right before and during the period. i will continue taking it but only when I get the infamous period headache. I have dental procedure scheduled at end of the month ( 2 implants!) and i will have to take antibiotic and pain killer. I just hope that it will not set my ringing off again. 
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  • Posted

    Im in the usa and they do not do much for it here either. Here they say allergies or tmj related maybe a eustation tube dysfunction. There are a tiny few doctors who feel they have mastered this and do xrays and brain surgery if they find it needed. But i have only seen a couple of doctors on line who discussed that as a viable option.and i think those special few doctors are only for the very rich. But mostly they throw their hand in the air following the standard battery of tests and tell you they just can not help you. Many people pop pills for ailments or chronic condition and so many many drugs are oto toxic, not for all but for some. And some have allergies which dissapate and the tinnitus goes away. Tmj can be cause and when either the splint works, if it works or the bruxism or teeth grinding stop within weeks so will their tinnitus. Mine went away and recently returned. I am hopeing it will go away again. I do believe the mind can help fix this somehow if there is no tumors or anything compressing on the nerve. The brain can retrain itself. Tumors are honestly rare anyway. When it goes away you are blessed and fortunate.
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  • Posted

    Hi there, it's me again! I had my dental implamts done. The ringing came back. This time my GP prescribed antihistamin this time. I have been taking it for few days and the ringing disappeared again! He told me this could be related to ETD due to allergy. I am going specialist to have allergy test. I never heared of eustache tube dysfunctioning! What allergen could that possible be causing it to shut down. Hopefully I will know. Any insights is appreciated.
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    • Posted

      Wow, it disappeared! God blessed you! Im happy for you and hopefully you never get it again, good luck to you, im happy this T is no longer a proble. For you!
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    • Posted

      I think maybe environmental allergies can be an issue--trees, pollen, grass, weeds and it doesn't matter the season. Falling leaves I get issues, spring leaves blooming, I get issues. 

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  • Posted

    Good news. I just wanted to suggest maybe the amoxil and Ibup but maybe moreso the strain of having your jaw open 2 hrs. I ended up with 8 months of face pain after a dental procedure. I think it was strain on my jaw and ligaments more than it was anything I took. Just adding that in for your consideration. Many people seem to have a TMJ correlation. I had bread yesterday, and mine is back today. So I may have to more seriously look at heeding the anti-inflammatory diet again as I did when my knee was injured. Did you take any supplements?
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  • Posted

    Hello everybody,

    I developed tinnitus in the same exact way as sarakas. Went to the dentis, got a root canal done through cutting a bridge. 2 days after the ring in my ear started. I am still during the first week after the treatment and I am wondering if this is caused by Amoxicillin antibiotic that was given to me after the dental procedure...

    What is your experience on this? Also, how are you feeling now Sarakas after about a year? Thank you everyone for your support.

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  • Posted

    Hi,

    I am too from Ontario, Canada......I have tinnitus for four years now..I started spreadsheet diary but only to record my stress level....Looks like I have to redo spreadsheet again.  Thanks for sharing.

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