Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Does A Hearing Aid Help Musical Ear Syndrome

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How Common Is Musical Ear Syndrome

Musical Tinnitus / Musical Ear Syndrome | Episode #16 | Tinnitus Therapy Online

A study done on a population with acquired hearing loss suggested that around 1% of that population had experienced musical hallucinations at some point, and this number might be too small as musical hallucinations are typically underreported. Another survey of patients completing hearing tests found that 3.6% of the cases has reported musical hallucinations.2

Sinusitis & Tinnitus: Finding Sinus Ear Ringing Treatment

Fortunately, sinusitis-related tinnitus tends to go away with treatment of the sinus infection. As a minimally-invasive procedure, balloon sinuplasty can be performed in-office in less than 20 minutes on patients with a medical sinus obstruction.

During this procedure, your otolaryngologist uses an endoscope to place a tiny balloon within your sinus cavity. Once inflated, this balloon can expand your sinuses, restoring drainage to areas that were previously blocked or too small for mucus to flow properly.

The procedure has the added benefit of requiring little-to-no recovery time, and the majority of balloon sinuplasty before and after testimonies speak to patients finding years of much-needed sinus relief.

What Are The Treatments For Musical Ear Syndrome

We have a couple of different options to treat MES. No matter what stage youre at, we have the experience to help you get through it and improve your hearing.

Hearing Aids As the best treatment, hearing aids have come a long way since your parents used them years ago. The technology is such that it can be adjusted to address your issues directly. Those with MES can get their prescription hearing aid programmed to constantly play another sound to mask the effects of MES. They can also address more than one problem at a time for those who have other hearing loss-related problems.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Learning how to live with musical ear syndrome is not ideal, but sometimes, its the only option. This process involves dedication and professional assistance to focus your brain elsewhere. It takes time and effort but must be done to protect the integrity of your mental health.

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The Problem With Hearing Aidsand The Solutions

Thursday, April 27, 201745 CommentsShare This:

If you find yourself straining to hear in crowded places or saying What did you say more often than you used to, you probably need a hearing aid. If despite the strain, you tell yourself that your hearings fine, youre not alone. A whopping 80 percent of adults between the ages of 55 and 74 who would benefit from a hearing aid do not use them, according to the International Journal of Audiology.

Why wouldnt you correct your hearing, the same way you correct your vision if you cant see well enough? People have a variety of reasons. Some have tried hearing aids before and complain about discomfort or difficulty handling them, or disappointment that that theyve failed to restore their former sense of sound. Many havent even tried them, because they dont want to wear something associated with old. For a lot of people, expense is an issue. But most people dont realize the profound damage that uncorrected hearing loss can do to your physical, emotional and cognitive health. Studies have associated being hard of hearing with poor general health, mood disorderseven shorter lifespan.

Bottom Line: You’re Not Alone

(Whatd You Say?) 7 Common Types of Hearing Disorders

Musicians may not talk about their tinnitus very often, but the truth is that very few others do either. Tinnitus affects hundreds of millions of people around the world and yet I talk to sufferers every day who had never heard of it before it started.

I also hear from countless people who are suddenly surprised to find that many of their family members and friends also experience tinnitus, once they decide to talk about it themselves.

If more musicians, DJs, stagehands, sound engineers, and producers were open about their tinnitus, they would suddenly find that nearly half of their peers know exactly what theyre going through.

Tinnitus is an incredibly difficult health problem to endure, especially for people in the music business, but its not the life sentence that it seems. And while it may distract you from your music in the short term, you do not just have to live with it.

There is always a way forward, and lasting relief is always possible.

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Medications That Can Cause Tinnitus

A number of medications may cause or worsen tinnitus. Generally the higher the dose of these medications the worse tinnitus becomes. Often the unwanted noise disappears when you stop using these drugs. Medications known to cause or worsen tinnitus include:

  • Antibiotics including polymyxin B erythromycin vancomycin and neomycin
  • Cancer medications including mechlorethamine and vincristine
  • Water pills such as bumetanide ethacrynic acid or furosemide
  • Quinine medications used for malaria or other health conditions
  • Certain antidepressants may worsen tinnitus
  • Aspirin taken in uncommonly high doses

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Famous Musicians With Tinnitus

Though many musicians suffer in secret, some well-known musicians have started to talk more openly and publicly about their struggles with tinnitus in recent years.

One very recent example is Huey Lewis, who had to had to stop touring as a direct result of tinnitus and hearing loss, both of which are symptoms of his recent Menieres disease diagnosis.

But Lewis is not alone.

Other famous musicians who openly talk about their tinnitus include:

  • Chris Martin
  • James Hetfield
  • John Densmore

It may seem like a lot, but statistically speaking, if 30-50% of professionals in the music industry experience tinnitus, this list is just the proverbial tip of the iceberg.

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Progression Of Hearing Loss For Menieres Patients

When you first receive a diagnosis of Menieres Disease, it was probably because you had experience with dizziness. In the early stages of this condition, you may not notice any hearing loss because its very subtle. At first, you lose some lower tones, and this occurs only in one of your two ears.

As time moves on, you may find you dont experience vertigo as often. Your hearing loss increases, and you still have ringing in one ear that remains. Slowly, your vertigo symptoms may seem to disappear mostly. Unfortunately, the Tinnitus becomes louder along with the continued progression of your hearing loss. Since the initial decrease in sound reception occurs only in one ear, it can make you feel out-of-balance even when you are not experiencing a dizzy spell.

You may develop hearing loss in both ears at some point. This manifests around five years after diagnosis. The hearing loss isnt equal in a bilateral sense either. The ear in which the hearing difficulties originates may get worse. Since we are accustomed to seeing people use hearing aids for similar problems not caused by Menieres, it makes sense to consider them as a potential helpmate.

What Should I Do If I Have Tinnitus

Musical Ear Syndrome

The first thing is to see your primary care doctor, who will check if anything, such as ear wax, is blocking the ear canal. Your doctor will ask you about your current health, medical conditions, and medications to find out if an underlying condition is causing your tinnitus.

If your doctor cannot find any medical condition responsible for your tinnitus, you may be referred to an otolaryngologist . The ENT will physically examine your head, neck, and ears and test your hearing to determine whether you have any hearing loss along with the tinnitus. You might also be referred to an audiologist who can also measure your hearing and evaluate your tinnitus.

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Amplification With Hearing Aids

As musical ear syndrome is correlated with sound deprivation, one of the main treatment strategies is amplifying the sound that the patient is exposed to. For instance, assistive hearing devices such as hearing aids have been effective at reducing musical hallucinations in MES patients experiencing hearing loss. By amplifying the sounds musical ear patients hear, hearing aids give the brain the auditory stimulation it requires. When someone with MES is getting enough auditory input, it may reduce the occurrence and severity of musical hallucinations they experience.

Is Musical Ear Syndrome Common

The few studies published in journals suggest only about 20% of those with tinnitus experience musical ear syndrome that means about 3% of the general population. Its most likely underreported, however, because those experiencing MES worry that if they tell someone, theyll seem mentally unstable.

In fact, Dr. Neil Bauman, who coined the term musical ear syndrome and has been raising awareness about the condition for many years, has heard from so many people affected by MES that he suspects the number is higher than 10% of the general population!

Though tinnitus is more prevalent in men, MES appears to be more prevalent in women.

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What’s The Difference Between Musical Ear Syndrome And Tinnitus

People with musical ear syndrome hear music while there is none. Patients with tinnitus hear ringing noises in their ears even though there is no external source causing the ringing. Tinnitus can also cause noises like clicking, hissing, buzzing, humming, or roaring in the ear.3 Musical ear syndrome tends to affect smaller populations and evoke a stronger emotional response in patients. Sometimes patients report hearing music that they remember from their youth. Both musical ear syndrome and tinnitus are often linked to hearing loss, however the primary mechanism that causes musical hallucinations other than hearing loss is still unknown.

Can I Obtain Financial Assistance For A Hearing Aid

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Hearing aids are generally not covered by health insurance companies, although some do. For eligible children and young adults ages 21 and under, Medicaid will pay for the diagnosis and treatment of hearing loss, including hearing aids, under the Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic, and Treatment service. Also, children may be covered by their states early intervention program or State Childrens Health Insurance Program.

Medicare does not cover hearing aids for adults however, diagnostic evaluations are covered if they are ordered by a physician for the purpose of assisting the physician in developing a treatment plan. Since Medicare has declared the BAHA a prosthetic device and not a hearing aid, Medicare will cover the BAHA if other coverage policies are met.

Some nonprofit organizations provide financial assistance for hearing aids, while others may help provide used or refurbished aids. Contact the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders Information Clearinghouse with questions about organizations that offer financial assistance for hearing aids.

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What Can I Do About Tinnitus

While tinnitus isnt life-threatening, it can have a major impact on your daily life. People with tinnitus perceive an unpleasant ringing sound or other noise in their ears. For some, the sound is continuous, while others experience tinnitus that comes and goes.

If you hear an unusual noise in one or both ears, seek proper diagnosis and treatment to manage your condition. At Southern ENT, our team of experts can help. To start, here is some information to help you understand that annoying sound in your ears.

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How Can Hearing Aids Help

Hearing aids are primarily useful in improving the hearing and speech comprehension of people who have hearing loss that results from damage to the small sensory cells in the inner ear, called hair cells. This type of hearing loss is called sensorineural hearing loss. The damage can occur as a result of disease, aging, or injury from noise or certain medicines.

A hearing aid magnifies sound vibrations entering the ear. Surviving hair cells detect the larger vibrations and convert them into neural signals that are passed along to the brain. The greater the damage to a persons hair cells, the more severe the hearing loss, and the greater the hearing aid amplification needed to make up the difference. However, there are practical limits to the amount of amplification a hearing aid can provide. In addition, if the inner ear is too damaged, even large vibrations will not be converted into neural signals. In this situation, a hearing aid would be ineffective.

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The Power Of Suggestion

Researchers at Lafayette College published a paper on Auditory Pareidolia in The Journal of Cognitive Psychology in 2015. Their paper indicates that MES may be brought on or enhanced by psychological priming.

Specifically, they looked at the concept in the context of reality TV shows about paranormal phenomena, where sounds are recorded, and there is already an underlying assumption that those noises represent some sort of spiritual communication. The participants, in other words, were being primed to hear something significant in the white noise.

Recent research has suggested that people who hold paranormal beliefs may be more susceptible to some perceptional illusions, the researchers noted.

Pareidolia is the tendency to perceive meaningful forms in suggestive congurations of ambiguous stimuli. Common examples of pareidolia include the perception of faces in nature or in human-made objects (e.g., grounded electrical outlets in the USA appear to have a pair of eyes and a mouth, they explain.

While it may seem generally innocuous, however, that power of suggestion can become a volatile hot button.

In 2008, makers of a Fisher Price doll had to pull the Little Mommy Cuddle n Coo toy because more and more people became convinced they heard her saying Islam is the light in what was meant to be unintelligible baby-like noise. Other people claimed to have heard Satan is king.

The toy was pulled from sale the same year it came out.

Dr Roach: Hearing Music Thats Only Playing For You

Musical Ear Syndrome | Musical Tinnitus | Musical Hallucinations

Dear Dr. Roach: I hear music playing in my head at all times. I cant stop it, even if Im reading, having a conversation or being active. Its there when I wake up in the night or in the morning. Even if I consciously stop it and try to hear only the ambient sounds around me, the music always comes back.

Is this indicative of any major problems? I am a very healthy 64-year-old male, and this is annoying. It has been going on for most of my life. I wonder if a psychiatrist could help. The only prescription I take is zolpidem for sleep, but I would consider any meds that would help stop this.


Dear S.H.: There are several medical reasons to have music in your head. One is called musical ear syndrome, which is a type of hallucination most commonly associated with hearing loss. Another is associated with psychiatric disease, especially obsessive-compulsive disorder, but also with schizophrenia or mood disorders.

However, my experience is that there are many, many normal people with no psychiatric illness who have music playing in their head almost all the time or all the time. Many people have had a song stuck in their head , but a few people have this continuously. I had one patient in whom this was a major source of distress, and in that case, it appeared to be related to the use of an antidepressant.

I asked people who know of it or have it how one gets this. What is the cause? No one knows. So I asked my doctor. Even he said he did not know.


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Summing It All Up: Menieres Help With Hearing Aid Use

Studies have shown that hearing aids can be extremely helpful for those with Menieres Disease providing your individual needs are taken into consideration. It is important to remain an active participant in audiological studies and talk to your physician about your specific auditory needs. Seventy percent of hearing aid users experienced a decrease in Menieres tinnitus with some reporting it seems to disappear while wearing their hearing aid. People also report that the hearing aid helps with balance issues not related to vertigo attacks.

There appears to be no reason you cant consider this option. Talk to the person tracking your hearing loss. You may have to try different hearing aids, but the time is worthwhile if you can hear better throughout your day.

Hearing Loss: The Science Of The Symphonies

MES is most common in individuals who experience bilateral sensorineural hearing loss. Sensorineural loss, which can be unilateral or bilateral is caused by damage to the nerve pathways from the inner ear to the brain, also known as the cochlea. Studies suggest that sudden bilateral loss of inner ear function releases neuronal groups that store auditory memory. As a result, the lack of inhibition can result in the release of the stored musical sensations, despite a lack of external stimulus. These sensations are the memories of tunes and voices, which are the complex sounds associated with MES. The vibrations of nearby air conditioners or refrigerators can also stimulate these sensations. Further conditions that can predispose people to MES include:


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Listen To Sample Tinnitus Sounds

ATA has compiled a playlist of the most common tinnitus sounds, to provide an example of what tinnitus patients hear on an everyday basis. If you have tinnitus, you can use this playlist to find the sound that best matches your own condition. You can also share this resource with your primary care provider, audiologist, family, and friends, so they get a sense of the noise in your head.

Please Note: Turn down the volume on your speakers or headphones before playing any of the sound files. The recordings, like tinnitus itself, are can be quite loud and irritating.

Tinnitus Sound 1: 4000 Hz Tone

To download this sound file, right-click the link below and select Save Link As…

Tinnitus Sound 2: 7500 Hz Tone

To download this sound file, right-click the link below and select Save Link As…

Tinnitus Sound 3: Tea Kettle

To download this sound file, right-click the link below and select Save Link As…

Tinnitus Sound 4: Buzzing or Cicada

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