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Estren

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Posts: 30
Reply with quote  #1 
I've made on and off threads about my struggle for over the past year with hyperacusis. It was around the middle of August in 2016 I first developed it, so it's been a little over 2 years since I acquired it. I really thought it would go away by then, but it hasn't. That isn't to say it for the most part hasn't. In October of last year, a threshold test exacerbated it to the worst it had ever been, and until around the end of April, it didn't seem to be changing at all. Until, per the suggestion of a specialist, I stopped wearing protection. Afterwards, my recovery was rapid, and aside from a couple of setbacks after trying ametriptyline for insomnia, my tolerance and sensitivity has been the best it's ever been since then, and my day to day life is only minimally impacted.

But it just won't go away. Even though I can tolerate nearly all situations people normally can, it's still there. I go through cyclical phases with it where it bothers me more during certain periods than others. There are various noises and irritants where it becomes very apparent I still have it. My tinnitus (which I've had since I was very young, although it had been barely perceivable) is still abnormal. I still can't listen to music like I used to, which has been the worst thing I've had to deal with. And as I've gone through this, I've come to recognize the psychological element to hyperacusis (atleast in my case) more than ever before. It's hard to readily describe, but there is a distinct perceptual element to this disorder wherein there's arguably more of a "recognition" of the symptoms than there is actually any physical manifestation. The further I've progressed with it, the harder it becomes to even recognize there's something like this going on, if I could put it that way.

But it's gone through so many phases and so many cases of apparent borderline recovery, that I really don't know exactly what it's going to be like when I'm actually almost on the verge of recovery, and what that will look like. So I have to ask, for people who've recovered, was it a sudden or gradual process? What did you notice most as you approached it? Did you experience anything predominantly psychological like I have? Do you feel you are more vulnerable to this occurring again? With what I've described, how much longer do you think I might have?
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bananacupcakes

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Posts: 60
Reply with quote  #2 
Are you really expecting 100% recovery?
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Estren

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Posts: 30
Reply with quote  #3 
Yes. Does that not happen with some people? What would something short of 100% recovery look like? Would this be heightened risk of redeveloping hyperacusis or something else?
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bananacupcakes

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Posts: 60
Reply with quote  #4 
For me, 100% recovery is being able to do all the things I can do before getting H and not experiencing a setback. But from most of what I've read, sufferers improve, but still have to make adjustments around noise. For the more unfortunate, they become worse than ever before. I am one of the more unfortunate. I got so much better after about a year or so of H. But exposure to loud music for about 30 seconds caused me months of daily constant pain that pushed me to the brink of suicide. I was the only one in pain. Others around me weren't affected at all. I'm much better now but I already have pain hyperacusis, whereas I had only loudness hyperacusis before the setback.

But even without that happening to me, stories of other people's experiences have given me a more or less clear idea of how this condition behaves. There's a reason why sufferers have H for years and decades; it's because it doesn't really go away and has a tendency to return once their guard is let down.

Of course, this is your life and your ears. It's up to you to take the risks. Regret comes at the end anyway.
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Estren

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Posts: 30
Reply with quote  #5 
You are the first person I've encountered who've said such a thing. At this point, my life, in a general sense, is really minimal effected by the condition. The only thing I'm really limited by is being unable using headphones, and various dissonant artificial audio sources (and possibly listening to artificial audio sources for particularly extended periods.) But those used be one of my primary outlets before this happened, so that's really been an issue for me emotionally this year. I am really hoping that when I recover, none of this will be an issue, but I do plan to take precautions to make sure none of this ever happens again. That means most likely getting rid of the audio equipment that caused this and wearing ear protection more often than I otherwise would have.
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bananacupcakes

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Posts: 60
Reply with quote  #6 
I hope it improves or at least, stays that way for you.
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Aplomado

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Posts: 710
Reply with quote  #7 
Yes, some people recover 100%.  Some partially.  Some not at all.  At this point, I am in the "partial recovery" camp.  I'm just dealing with it.
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WhatHappenedDenis

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Posts: 46
Reply with quote  #8 

I think what banana stated is best suited for most of us
There's no shame in protecting ears in loud environment - I love dancing and occasional visits with friends to bars - I just plug in ear plugs in these situations now - began with no tolerance to any sounds about 18 months ago
The slow path works best (I think)

Also the brain automatically discards the importance over time (when there is no pain) so most of the importance is given by us 

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stresseemoijms

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Posts: 41
Reply with quote  #9 
I met someone who recovered and he still wears ear plugs to concerts because that’s what “normal” people should be doing anyway as anything over 85 db can cause hearing damage. But being intelligent and careful doesn’t mean he’s not recovered. Please don’t let anyone try to convince you that you can’t fully recover.
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