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Post Earphone usage tinnitus?

Alex Harkett

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Hi guys.
Just wanted to put this out there to see if anyone else had experienced anything similar to me.

My sim sessions or even just general gaming are usually only a couple of hours at a time in the evening, 3 hours at most. This is most days with some exceptions. I always use my Alienware 510H head set as I don’t have have speakers... the wife isn’t fond of the noise of racing.

I have the volume up, but only around the high 20s to 30s which is loud enough to give a nice sense of being in the car but not so loud that I find myself thinking ‘oof this is a bit loud’ Occasionally after I have shut everything down and am reading or something before sleep I can feel like a sort of buzzing sensation and like a hum or tone in my ears which usually passes after a half hour or so. I noticed this happens even if I have the volume at a lower level.

But as of this week the hum and tone have persisted for around a week now which I assume means I’ve damaged my hearing and now have tinnitus as my penance...
My question was, has anyone else experienced this phenomenon and did the noise ultimately pass or have I now ruined my sim racing for the rest of time?

Many thanks
 
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Tinnitus can be a terrible affliction that can be so bad that people have been driven to suicide.

I've had it since an explosive incident during childhood, but that was so long ago that it does not bother me - it's just background noise that I'm totally used to and rarely notice.

However, several years ago, another incident caused a much, much worse case of it. That did bother me, a lot! I wouldn't say I was suicidal over it, but it was so bad that the thought of enduring it potentially for the rest of my life was terrifying. Thankfully, after 6 months or a year or so, the worst of it did start to fade, though not completely. Most days I'm OK with what's left of it, but some days it's still pretty bad.

A question: have you been using any medications, especially any antibiotics? Certain common antibiotics are suspected of significantly increasing the chances of developing tinnitus (I'm convinced that that's what got me the second time - "thanks", Doc, for not mentioning that side effect!), though usually in conjunction with overly-loud noise exposure.

Unfortunately, there's essentially no treatment for it. (Oddly, sometimes exposure to noise - not that loud - that is of the same frequency-range as the tinnitus can sometimes suppress it for a short while, but that's about it.)

No one can say what the trajectory of your case might be, but if I were you, I'd remain hopeful that yours will fade over time. However, given that you have experienced it to a bothersome degree, it's now your task to try to limit your exposure to loud noise. No more rock concerts, no more blasting headphones, etc. Be careful from here on out. Whether it gets better or not, you DON'T want it to come back or get worse!
 

Fat-Alfie

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I commuted on a bicycle for 8 years, 2 hours a day, using earphones to listen to music. I guess by the time I had increased the volume enough to block out the wind noise, it was too loud. I now have a constant high-pitched whistle in both ears, which I am sure was caused by the music. Sometimes I am not aware of it, but sometimes it can be very distracting.

Tinnitus is caused by damage to the nerves in the ears, usually those that are responsive to a certain sound frequency. Once the damage is done, it is irreversible. If I were you, I would lower your volume now, while you have the chance to prevent any further damage.

If I had known then what I know now, I wouldn't have listened to music on my commute :(
 

Alex Harkett

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thanks both.
I’ve not been on any medication. Only thing I’m wondering is whether it might be being aggravated by an infection. I’ve definitely had the volume down a lot since it became apparent but like I said, at the time it didn’t seem insanely loud. Obviously done a lot of reading since first experiencing it and it doesn’t take too much to do a fair amount of damage.

Happily I have an appointment on Monday so I may be referred and be able to have it checked.

sorry to hear you both have suffered too :(
 
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