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Andersson

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 #1 
Hi.

I got Tinnitus in late 2011, it was so loud that I could not mask it with anything.
It took about a year then I somehow managed to live with it, the weird thing Is I could be in a totally quite place and not "hear" it if I look back, or I could hear it but I was never bothered by it.

My life was normal.

In November 2015 everything went downhill.
I always had tinnitus mainly on my left side, a high pitched noise that is not constant, goes up and down.

The "volume" of it increased a lot, nothing can mask it, its very very loud.
There was no drugs, sound, or anything like that anywhere close to when the increase happened.

I had anxiety/depression problems for 10 years, well before I developed T.
But even when I had a BIG dip in 2014 it never effected my tinnitus, it was the same.

Now for some reason my tinnitus have gotten a lot louder.
In early January my always VERY quite tv-tone sound in my right ear got super loud, also for no reason. It thankfully lowered itself back to normal after 3 days.

2 weeks ago I tried starting fluoxetine, to help with my anxiety over tinnitus.
I started on lowest dose 10mg, 4 days in a new very annoying sound in my right ear started. Nothing I ever had before.
I took fluoxetine for 2 more days before I decided to quit.

Its been one week now and the sound is still here, I am afraid something happened with all this SSRI messing with the brain, and this new sound is here to stay.
Sadly my left is still very very loud, and I am afraid to try any more antidepressants.
After this happened just on a low dose in a week I dont know what to do.

I am just in despair, I cannot see myself getting back to where I been for 3 years, happy living with T. Not ever really being bothered by it or even hearing it most times.

I fight every single day now, I need to take Sobril (oxazepam) 10mg now and then to survive.

I just cannot accept that a new loud sound started in my "healthy" ear when the left side is also increased. 
It is just to much for me to accept living with, and with me being afraid of trying medication I am just lost.

Talking therapy have not been helpful.

Do you have any tips on how I can try and cope?
Did I ruin my right ear with this antidepressant so I have to live with this new sound forever (my hearingtests are the same as they were when I took them in 2012, in both ears, minimal differences)

I tried natural remedies like 5-htp but I did not feel my anxiety being better.
Vitamins like magnesium etc does nothing.

I really dont want to gamble with antidepressants if just a super low dose for a week does permanent damage to me.

Best Regards,
Jimmie Andersson
Dr. Nagler

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 #2 
Thank you for your post, Jimmie. I am so sorry that you are having a rough time of it.

So to your main concern: no, you didn't ruin your right ear with the antidepressant. Tinnitus comes from the brain, not from the ear. You just hear it in your ears ... because that's where you hear everything. (It would be very odd to hear it in your toe, right?)

So at this point in time you are hearing it in your right ear as well as your left ear. But it's only been a week that you have been hearing it in your right ear, and there is a good likelihood that it will just fade from your right ear given a bit of time.

Now, in terms of the "talk therapy," how many sessions did you have over how long a period of time? Also, what exactly were you trying to accomplish with the talk therapy? Finally, did the person with whom you did the talk therapy have much experience with tinnitus?

If you would be kind enough to answer those questions when you have the time, perhaps I can point you in the right direction.

Dr. Stephen Nagler
Atlanta Tinnitus Consultants, LLC

__________________

The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.
- Mahatma Gandhi

No bird ever soared in a calm. Adversity is what lifts us.
-
David McCullough quoting Wilbur Wright
Andersson

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Posts: 2
 #3 
Hi.
Thank you for the answer.

It just seems like a very weird coincidence that it started in my right in the middle of antidepressants, but is still here after. So all I can think of is that prozac/fluoxetine started something new that is not going away.

I am in CBT therapy, sadly they are not tinnitus specialist, but where I live in Sweden there is not much to turn to regards to that.
We are trying to focus on not getting stuck in catastrophic thinking, and relaxation exercises. But it's just not working because the left sound is so loud and the new sound in the right makes my anxiety ever higher then before when the left increased in November. 
Right now I feel like I am in the lowest point I ever been in my life, and I just cannot see a way out of it. CBT is trying to help me see it but Its so hard.

Sleeping is ok, I actually manage to get to sleep from sheer exhaustion most time.

I always been able to effect my left side tinnitus when I cramp my neck, put pressure on my jaw and so on. But the new right sound is not effected by anything like that at all.


Best Regards,
Jimmie Andersson
Dr. Nagler

Owner
Registered:
Posts: 1,764
 #4 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimmie
Thank you for the answer.

You are welcome.

Quote:
It just seems like a very weird coincidence that it started in my right in the middle of antidepressants, but is still here after. So all I can think of is that prozac/fluoxetine started something new that is not going away.

I understand. And I guess there is a very remote chance that it was the antidepressants. But more than likely the antidepressants had nothing to do with it. Indeed, you had a significant increase in your tinnitus back in January when you weren't on antidepressants! That increase settled down on its own after a while. I suspect your right ear would have started ringing anyway - and you've focused on the antidepressants sort of by default. There's really no way to know for sure, of course. But here's something we do know: You really cannot untake the medication - so either way you need to play the hand you have been dealt. (But I really don't think the drugs had anything to do with it!)

Quote:
I am in CBT therapy, sadly they are not tinnitus specialist, but where I live in Sweden there is not much to turn to regards to that.
We are trying to focus on not getting stuck in catastrophic thinking, and relaxation exercises. But it's just not working because the left sound is so loud and the new sound in the right makes my anxiety ever higher then before when the left increased in November. 
Right now I feel like I am in the lowest point I ever been in my life, and I just cannot see a way out of it.

Let's step back for a minute. I am going to assume that you have had a recent ENT evaluation to rule out the (very rare) fixable causes of your tinnitus and the (even rarer) causes of tinnitus that can be a threat to your health.

Now that having been accomplished, it turns out that you did not seek out this board because you have tinnitus. You may have thought you did, but you didn't. No, you sought out this board because you have tinnitus and it makes you feel horrible. Indeed, if your tinnitus didn't make you feel bad - then you'd have tinnitus, but you really wouldn't have a problem, right? Well obviously you'd like to do something about your tinnitus. But there's really nothing at this point in time you can do about your tinnitus. Your tinnitus will do what it's going to do. So since you cannot do anything about your tinnitus, why not do something about your reaction to your tinnitus? What's the big deal about reaction? Simple: Feeling bad is a reaction, and therefore the less you react to your tinnitus, the less bad you feel. The problem is that you cannot make yourself react less to your tinnitus. In fact, the harder you try not to react to your tinnitus, the more frustrated you will become and the worse you'll feel!

CBT is one of the effective approaches for mitigating your reaction to your tinnitus without purposely trying not to react to it. And since there are people with very loud tinnitus who do not react to it (just like there are people with very soft tinnitus who are largely incapacitated by it), the fact that your tinnitus is loud will not block this process from moving forward for you

Since your CBT therapist does not have much experience with tinnitus, why don't you ask him or her to discuss your situation with Dr. Gerhard Andersson, Professor of Clinical Psychology at Link√∂ping University? Dr. Andersson is one of the world's leading authorities on CBT for tinnitus sufferers. I am sure that Dr. Andersson will gladly give your own CBT therapist some guidance regarding how best to address your needs. In the meantime perhaps read my Letter to a Tinnitus Sufferer. And if the concepts therein appeal to you, then go through The Henry and Wilson Book very slowly a couple of times, making sure to write down your answers to the exercise. (Do not just do them in your head.)

Quote:
CBT is trying to help me see it but Its so hard.

It's supposed to be hard. But you can do this.

Dr. Stephen Nagler

__________________

The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.
- Mahatma Gandhi

No bird ever soared in a calm. Adversity is what lifts us.
-
David McCullough quoting Wilbur Wright
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Dr. Nagler's Tinnitus Corner is provided for education and information only. It is not intended for the purpose of providing medical care and should in no way substitute for appropriate in-person consultations with qualified healthcare professionals. By using this site, participants agree to hold Dr. Nagler and Atlanta Tinnitus Consultants, LLC harmless with respect to any loss, injury, claim, liability, or damage arising from following the postings herein.