painangrrfear (painangrrfear) wrote in tinnitustalk,
painangrrfear
painangrrfear
tinnitustalk

Introduction

Hi. I'm posting seeking advice on behalf of my son who has recently started having tinnitus. He is thirteen years old and we've had him seen by his pediatrician, an ENT, and an audiologist. No one can find a cause other than the obvious "shit happens". Next stop is a neurologist. He's had the tinnitus for about seven months now and everything I've read seems to indicate that this is probably something he's just going to have to live with.

The tinnitus bothers him most at night, so we've set up a CD player by his bed so he can play music to try and drown out the ringing in his ears. He has one of those 'soundscape' CDs with the sound of surf accompanying sort of new-agey-type music. Sometimes he just listens to his regular music CDs.

Does anyone have any other methods for dealing with tinnitus? Any advice would be much appreciated! Thank you.
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I like to listen to my iPod before I go to bed. I listen to a lot of delta wave CDs.

Check out this website: http://www.therelaxationcompany.com/

http://www.therelaxationcompany.com/music-for-sleep.html

I had the same issue with ENTs not shrugging me off and telling me to live with it. Here my tinnitus was caused by my migraines and now that my migraines are treated, my tinnitus is under control. Keep pressing with that neurologist and take care. I hope he feels better and gets relief soon. <3
Thanks so much, I'm going to order the 'Sleepy Ocean' and 'Rain' CD set for him!

I'm hoping the neurologist can give us some better answers since my son also gets migraines (as do I, though without any tinnitus problems). If you don't mind sharing, did you get tinnitus as part of the migraine aura or did it show up afterwards?
You are very welcome. :-) I have the "Sleepy Ocean" and "Rain" set and LOVE them. They sound amazing and are very soothing. I also like the Peaceful Music for Sleep and Delta Sleep Systems. Dan Gibson also makes some nice CDs. My favorites are Natural Sleep Inducement (http://www.amazon.com/Natural-Sleep-Inducement-Various-Artists/dp/B00000J107/ref=m_art_li_4/103-7168732-1270226) and Sleep Deeply (http://www.amazon.com/Sleep-Deeply-Dan-Gibson/dp/B000HEVZ4Y/ref=pd_sim_m_img_13)

I get my tinnitus mostly with my migraine auras, but sometimes the tinnitus lasts well into the migraine.

<3 Take care
You're doing just the right thing. Finding a way to distract the brain during the times when a person notices the tinnitus is the best thing to do!

Also, you should know that your son is at greater risk of making the tinnitus worse by listening to music loudly or by being in noisy situations. When in noise, he should use earplugs or earmuffs, and he should be careful to listen to music at a reasonable volume
Thanks for the input!

I've always been cautious about my kids using headphones and/or being exposed to loud noise, since I wrecked my own hearing with irresponsible heavy metal use. ;) The only possible loud noise he's been exposed to is from playing trumpet in his school band--which I've thought about before, but it doesn't seem to add up. I mean, amplified music is one thing. Could concert band really cause hearing problems? It's something I'll definitely bring up with his doctors since he could easily wear ear plugs.
Actually, band practice is often LOUDER than rock concerts.

There are great earplugs out there that are specifically designed for musicians. They don't block out all sound, and make it sound more natural. I recommend the "Ety-Plug" by Etymotic Research.

http://www.etymotic.com/ephp/er20.aspx

The same earplugs are available in a custom-made style. These are often more comfortable, but have to be remade as a child grows. They can be purchased from your audiologist.
I use etymotic's standard plugs, and have for a while now. I have Meniere's as well as tinnitus, so they help stop attacks of both from loud noise. Well well well worth the money!
Thanks! The audiologist said try the standard kind first and if they are uncomfortable he'll custom fit a pair for him. I'm glad to know that there's at least something I can do to help him with this.
Information on custom musician's earplugs:

http://www.etymotic.com/ephp/erme.aspx

I'd recommend the ER-15 or ER-25 for your son.
"Actually, band practice is often LOUDER than rock concerts."

Dang, wouldn't you just know? Maybe I should start blaming my own hearing loss on John Phillips Sousa instead of Metallica. Thanks so much for the earplug links! Our local music store carries them; we're going to get him a pair ASAP.
As my tinnitus has been getting more noticeable, I've been listening to more music, or leaving the TV on in the background. I just watch the volume levels while I do so.

I also just saw this article in the NY Times regarding new tinnitus therapies on the horizon. I don't know how many are available or where, but it might be worth looking into.
His bothers him most when it's quiet so the music/background noise does seem to help. The article is interesting, thanks for the link! I hope the price of that one device comes down eventually because it sounds promising.
Indeed. In general tinnitus is often a case of being that it's something that happens. It really makes one wish others appreciated silence more.

As it has just been 7 months, I wouldn't give up hope yet. It may still just fade away!

Anywho. When I was that age, maybe a little younger, Mum bought me a bunch of audiobooks. Worked an absolute treat, and I can say with certainty that I'd be much more of a mess otherwise!

Other things! "Drowning it out" isn't always the best way to go about things, the obvious is that if you're drowning out too loud, there'll disrupted sleep anyway, on top of that, it reduces the coping mechanisms.
Even if it's a case of reducing the music or whatever to just below the comfort level, then over time, it's more likely to help!
Something else to consider are sounds such as keeping a fan going in the room he's in. I've found this fairly effective, especially when I'm studying intesively, as music is a great distraction, but something closer to a natural background noise helps far more.

I think the soundscape things are a good way to go though. One thing I've found very helpful for me, has been to have a decent sound system to listen to the background noise through, as I find that poor quality sounds can highlight the tinitus and trigger it more, although, during the night, a smaller something like the cd player is generally acceptable for me.
I think talking about he tinitus is definitely a good plan. In the short term, it does make it worse, but in the long term, being young with noises in your head, can be more than a little disturbing.

Oh, and when it comes to an audiologist or what have you, if they hint in any way that they don't entirely believe it, or otherwise show they don't really understand the condition, then I'd strongly advise finding someone else ASAP. In my experience, I've had one consultant repeatedly telling me I was making it up another that was just entirely unsympathetic, and several others including an audiology "specialist" in tinnitus trying to counsel me, when she clearly had little understanding. All in all, they were highly detrimental.
Thanks for your input, I appreciate it!

Running the fan is a good option that totally slipped my mind, I guess because it's been cold and all the fans were put away last fall.

So far all the medical people have been supportive. This comm has been a real help too--I wouldn't even know what to ask the doctors about without the input from here and from reading up on the subject.