Recently on my Facebook page, I shared a video of Rikki Poynter, who is an American YouTuber, that lives with Tinnitus, and she inspired me to share my story on living with it.

If you’ve never heard of tinnitus, it is a sound that you can hear inside of your ear. It can vary from ringing, buzzing or whistling. Some people have mild tinnitus, some people have a stronger sound in their ear. Each form of tinnitus is unique and varies in different people.

I’ve been campaigning for British Sign Language for a while now, but have never shared my own experiences with tinnitus, which in my case does affect my hearing. Does that mean I have hearing loss? I’ll let you decide.

This started from an operation I had when I was younger. I had a perforated eardrum which would not heal itself. The surgeons had to remove a piece of skin behind my ear, and stitch this to my actual eardrum. Tinnitus was just a mere side effect of the operation, and it has lived with me ever since.

My form of tinnitus is a very high pitched squeal, and is continuous. I’ve tried to find a YouTube video to help you gauge the idea of what it sounds like, and the closest video I could find is a dog deterrent. (Sorry!)

The squealing gets much louder in a quieter room, and it’s hard to take your concentration off the sound. I’m sat in my room, with no background noise, and it’s super loud at the moment. However, background noises can really help drown out the sound of my tinnitus.

One of my main struggles is getting to sleep with the noise, so I cope by using the TV to help drown out the sound. I like to watch something that is really easy, and I don’t need to think about. Friends is my go to choice, as I can literally quote every line from every scene and every episode. (Judge me all you like, I’m a BIG Friends fan)

Another daily struggle, is actually having conversations with people. Ask anybody who knows me well, the amount of times I have to ask people to repeat what they’ve said is crazy! It was only recently, I realised how much I rely on lipreading myself. I was talking to my friend without my glasses or contact lenses, and I couldn’t see what they were saying. Then it hit me just how much I used lip reading as a tool.

Maybe there is some form of hearing loss in there too? I don’t know. I haven’t had a hearing test in years (please don’t hate me for that!) but all I do know is that I rely on lip reading a lot more than I realised, and it actually surprised me!

So there you have it! Those are my experiences of living with tinnitus. I haven’t covered every aspect of it, however if you’d like to know a bit more. Feel free to drop me a question below, and I’ll reply to your comment.

Much love x

6 Comments

  1. Sorry to read about your Tinnitus. Everyones is different but yours sounds particularly bad. My partner suffers also,thankfully I don’t. Keep up with the blogs very informative.

  2. I suffer with hearing loss (I finally had a BAHA fitted 2yrs ago) and have suffered with tinnitus as long as I can remember! When I was about 7-14yrs I thought I was going mad as it was always worse at night and I would cry because I couldn’t explain it and no-one understood what I was experiencing, which in turn would make it louder Then when my hearing loss was diagnosed tinnitus was explained to me. I am the same as yourself I will use the tv as a tool to drown out the sound and again like you, Friends is my go to! 😄
    I used lip reading as a tool to help me with my hearing loss for a very long time (I didn’t like wearing my aids). It maybe worth you having a hearing test as I have found using my BAHA has helped drown out my tinnitus during the day. I will definitely be checking out Rikki’s blog x sending you love …keep doing what you’re doing!!

    1. Not many people are aware of what tinnitus actually is. So I’m not surprised that you felt like you were going mad. I’m glad you’ve finally had an explanation. I think you’re right in the fact that I need to go for a hearing test too 🙂

  3. You made me think about how much I rely on lip reading too! I don’t have tinnitus, but had glue ear as a child and had very poor hearing for a couple of years, so relied on lip reading. My hearing has improved, but I am so accustomed to supporting my hearing through lip reading that I struggle without it now.

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