I traveled to Beijing for an exhibition. The smoke was so thick during the week of my visit that trips were postponed, sections of the three main thoroughfares were closed, outdoor school activities were closed, and the houses on the other side of my hotel streets only seen as silhouettes in miasma-brown miasma.
I had a bad cold, it was better to fly a long way home, and then it got really bad. I felt as if someone had poured it into my head and was holding a girdle around my temples. My faults weren’t very clear for a month. Finally, I stood on my lap. And when I did, I saw the sound in my ears.
At first, I thought the sound would go away, like I was cold. But no. After six months of changing desires, I made an appointment to see a doctor. “Tinnitus,” he said.
(Medical professionals, almost without exception, place emphasis on the first syllable, as they do with angina; citizens, in both cases, irritate the second and lengthen the middle. .) Most of the 50 million or so Americans who have tinnitus have at least some hearing loss, and both problems are often caused by exposure to loud noises.
My internist tested my ears by holding a small earlobe and asking me to tell her when I could no longer hear. After a while, he leaned forward to make sure the gun sounded, even though he couldn’t hear it anymore.
(We were both in our fifties.) Tinnitus was the main source of service -related disability claims made by the military; the second is the hearing.
Care (or lack thereof)
Some types of hearing loss can be turned into a cut, and the tinnitus associated with it, if any, goes with it. But I didn’t get that kind of hearing. Tinnitus is sometimes caused by earwax and can be cured by taking it. But I have no problem with earwax.
Some forms of tinnitus manifest themselves such as rhythmic beating, moaning and wheezing, which are often associated with the heartbeat. This is called pulsusive tinnitus, and, unlike other types of tinnitus, is sometimes heard by people who are not in pain. But I have no symptoms of tinnitus.
For me and most of the others, there was no known cure. A friend of mine who had had it for a long time before I told me the other day that it had become so much better. “I agreed to the beep, but when the beep started I went running around the house, trying to find the machines that were ringing,” he said.
Her doctor referred her to a well -known tinnitus specialist in New York City. “She listened patiently as I told her about my condition and explained everything I had heard or read about tinnitus,” my friend continued.
“When I finished, he would laugh and say, ‘Here is the truth. I do not understand. They do not know. No one knows. What did you do about it? I said when I couldn’t sleep I took Ativan. He said, ‘Thatʻs good. You can do that for the rest of your life. ‘”
The latest concept of tinnitus
A common misconception about tinnitus is that it is compared to phantom pain, a strong tingling sometimes felt by amputees in parts of their body that are not there.
Robert Dobie told me, “You know, the man has lost a foot and he still has a bruised toe even though the toe is gone. I think of tinnitus in the same way.
You got lost. of the ear, and your brain no longer receives a sound input in certain frequent places, so the brain converts to silence with a phantom sound. ”
If the centers of evaluation in the brain of a tinnitus sufferer, in the end, are selective about nerve signals they no longer receive, they may be misled into thinking they have heard something.
something else – secretly? Desyncra, a German health professional, offers a “neuromodulation” tinnitus therapy, which, it is said, “rewires the brain” by altering the function of misdiagnosis of brain cells that “do not know the brain to produce pathological conditions with persistent consequences.
According to Desyncra, those involved in the protocol report a great, lasting help. But the price is high – $ 4,500 – and if you want something adventurous you can try the work for free, using a Web app called General Fuzz by music translator Desyncra in a scientific paper available on the website of the National Institutes of Health.
If you spend every time reading about tinnitus on the internet, your email will immediately fill the inbox with spam about weird foods, if you eat it for breakfast, your ears will stop ringing forever, or the homeopathic concoction that has a high price tag.
Audiologists and the FDA don’t want you to know about it, or the treatment that “doctors don’t leave,” or that helps psychiatrists “this is impossible to wood. ” What you don’t get are emails about the techniques and procedures that actually make tinnitus go away for good.
Hope for a tree
One of the great advantages of being a member of the baby boom generation is that, for so many of us, capitalism almost collapses and speaks to our growing needs.
It gives us Little Leaguers seasoned cars, small cars when we get licenses, bring a lot when we’re battling teenagers, minivans and SUVs when we’re as parents, there were more than two seats when we had problems in between as we approached vacation, and Uber and Lyft when we knew we wouldn’t agree and couldn’t drive to ourselves.
And now, in colleges and private institutions around the world, it is difficult to create cures for tinnitus and hearing loss. Keep an eye out.
David Owen is an author of The New Yorker and the author of ten or more books. Edited this story Volume Control: Hearing a Cruel World by David Owen, Copyright (c) 2019 By David Owen. Published by Riverhead Books, a member of Penguin Random House, LLC.