Today I learned that the ringing that started in my ears a few months ago will be with me for life. I have permanent high frequency hearing damage; irreversible. I am, astonishingly, in my 40s, in need of hearing aids. Too much loud music. Take a lesson, boys and girls.

It was hard to hear (what?) the news, but there are certainly worse things to learn from a doctor and I remain grateful beyond words for my excellent health. I go to get molded for custom earplugs (which I will now have to wear to every fucking concert I go to in the future) next week. I don’t quite know what to do about the other. I know I miss a lot, but I’m not sure that I’m handicapped enough to want to start down the HEARING AID path.

Sadly, I don’t have a hair cell to spare, and am no longer allowed to listen to my music at extremely high volume. I wish I could take back every mediocre and overloud concert experience I’ve ever had. Especially the most recent one. I would not, however, take back even one Ramones concert.

want Power

16 thoughts on “dang.

  1. Hearing aids, while useful for boosting the sounds in your ear, are also fashionable and come in colors. They are also useful for not hearing annoying people…sorry! batteries are dead! Glass–cocoon setting!

    • Apparently I am an excellent candidate and they have swank hi-tech ones that only boost the frequencies a person is missing. STILL. The doctor said… “You may not realize how much you are missing.”

  2. I have had that problem since I was a child. At that time I had never listened to loud music. I also never complained because as a child, I thought everyone had that. The noise I hear is very high pitched and constant. Usually it is louder than anthing else I am listening to. I have to say I now like to go to the truck and listen to music pretty lound because that is the only time I get any peace from it. I am sure I am missing frequencies, but I am so used to it, I don’t miss it, and I usually hear just enough to get irritated…(politics)

    • Apparently it can be caused by viruses as well as abuse, and also by taking too much aspirin. I guess a lot of people suffer from this. Mine isn’t as loud as yours, I guess, it’s pretty low level. Even a gentle stream of water can cancel it out. I’m sorry to hear that you have it too, and worse than I. <3

  3. I got all the bad genes in my family including the hearing ones. But I have a niece who had great hearing loss in her early 30s — also and completely caused by too loud music. This was particularly bad because she had small children who were very difficult to hear. My hearing loss started also in my 40s and I didn’t do anything about it until we had a company with an enlightened health insurance plan(Oracle) and I got the very expensive hearing aids in my 50s. I now have a cheapo pair that friends and family call my ear plugs. You get what you pay for in hearing aids, that’s for sure! Good luck, Kate. I’m sorry that has happened to you.

  4. Years ago I had a myelogram as MRI’S & CT’S were not available at my hospital. When they remove spinal fluid, some other type os something-something is to be injected to keep the spinal fluid at the same level. They didn’t, I had a spinal leak (I actually felt my back to feel for a leak, hello!). They made me spend the night in the hospital then booted me out the next day with strick instuctions to lay perfectly flat. My husband left on a PR tour and I was sobbing with rhe worst headache I had ever had, it made any migraine I had ever had a walk in the park. I had to be readmitted for a week, flat on my back, got to use a bed pan, total humiliation and pumped full of anything with sugar to try to seal the leak. The only thing that sealed the leak was to inject my own blood into the site.
    From the moment they stapped to a board, I have been hearing screeching in my head. I cannot sleep without a TV on to mask the noise, I blast my radio in my car and rock on, my hearing sucks and I was due to take my dad to have his hearing aids checked today but a half hour before, she called in sick. I was finally going to get custom ear buds made to mask the noise with my music. I’m already crazy, the screeching adds to it but hearing aids…all I want is to hear my music clearer, I can hide without leaving home! You’ve taught me a new trick. But you are right, once those tiny hairs in your ears go, it starts. Protect them! You have a long way to go and need to take care. There’s more than one reason why musicians where inner ear earphones, protection from all those amps and on stage noise and then to hear how they all work together. Mine might twinkle, but they will be colorful. The screeching has been horrible. I’m so sorry this has happened to you. Take good care so you can continue to enjoy. I wish I could make you all better. Fly away with Larry. I dream of that. Just be well and don’t put it off. Sorry for so much yapping.

    • That SUCKS! Yours is a lot louder than mine, mine is like a background sound, and I can easily learn to cope. Hearing everyone else’s stories about the clanging in their head has made me grateful that mine is only as bad as it is. I still have a lot of hearing and only a little buzzing. If I do get the hearing aids, they say that they can format them to cancel out the buzz and amplify only the frequencies I’m missing, so it’s good to know that there is a fix for me. Sounds like they really messed you up. So sorry!

  5. Geeeee! I thought that the smoke alarm in my head was caused by the evil people that I hear talking in there, all the time. And the doctor told me that I have almost the same level of hearing that I had the last time. Period. Hearing aids? What will they do for my head? And when it spontaneously shuts off, I have this thought that just maybe it won’t turn back on. And I worry that it is so loud, it will annoy others. Lets put our heads together to see what we can do about this.

  6. The ringing must be terribly annoying, re-consider the aids though because they are so high-tech now that some are really small, fitted in the middle ear canal & you wear them all the time until the batteries need to be changed. I’m an expert since my child was born severely impaired and we have experimented with a ton over the last 30 years. She wears the tiny digital kind that are translucent blue & fit in her ear canal with a tiny clear wire that she uses to pull them out. She even has a remote control the size of an epi pen so she has volume control in concert halls, ball games etc. when the noise bounces around. This technology is a miracle! My daughter speaks perfectly normal and hears almost on a normal conversational level….this result would be unheard of 50 years ago…she would probably be signing without these new digital aids.

    Good Luck!

  7. I have several friends who are musicians in local bands, and back when I had more time, I used to go out and listen to them all regularly. But my last loud local (or larger concert) experience was about 35 years ago in my mid-20’s .. then I discovered sonic ear valves. They’re soft rubbery plugs with a little metal canister embedded inside. They block out the harmful stuff and let most all of the rest through. I wear them anytime there’s going to be anything loud. You can carry on a conversation with them in, but they function best as harmful noise reduction devices at concerts. I bought two pair years ago and they still work just fine. This is what they look like (not where I got them, but they’re pretty much the same item): http://www.earplugstore.com/sonicvalveii.html I know the horse is already outta the barn, but for anyone else who wants to save their hearing- but despite those squishy foam things that make you feel like you’re in an echo chamber – these plugs are the cat’s pajamas.

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