Friday, April 24, 2009

Question for the hard of hearing peeps...

Today, I had the most peculiar sound go off in my left ear. A very, VERY, V E R Y loud high pitched squeal. Ears make noises - weirdo electronic sounding squeals, beeps, scrunchings - I think that's normal. I've had similar sounds to what I heard today but this was very different because of its loudness and intensity. It's difficult to explain but the sound felt internal. The noise was in a frequency that I can no longer hear if it's coming from the outside. Make sense?

I was food shopping when it went off and I just had to stop, stare at the produce and breathe... it got louder and louder and louder ... it sounded like my ear was going to explode. It was awful. I just stood there with my hand to the side of my head wondering if this is how I'd croak... exploded ear, all over a mound of Mexican broccoli (on sale).

It went as quick as it came but I've been a bit on edge since it happened... anticipating, I guess.

I was au naturel; I wasn't wearing my hearing aids.

What was that? Anyone else experience this? Should I speak to my audiologist?


  1. I have no answers to your question, but just wanted to say that it must have been scary and I hope it doesn't happen again. I think you would be advised to consult your audiologist, even if it's just to put you at ease.

  2. i was going to ask if you had your aids in, but you didn't so...i have had those loud sounds in my right ear before. it has been quite awhile since it has happened. it usually catches me off guard. anyway, for me, my doctor told me to chill on the caffeine and aspirin was making have that loud ringing in my one ear.

    it is frightening, and your like 'wtf?' you could ask your doctor to check your ear just to make sure all is okay...can't hurt, you know?

    glad your ear didn't explode on the sale priced mexican broccoli, i actually love broccoli. :-)

  3. Do you normally have tinnitis? I have this a lot, and it's always a lot worse when I'm au naturel, and always in a pitch I can't hear externally. Sometimes it's like a jet taking off right next to you. That's probably what it is, but it's worth talking to a doctor or audiologist. I suspect they will just say what they tell me, "Try to ignore it. It's normal." Ummm ... thanks, and don't think about pink elephants.

  4. Thanks jelly - always nice to know other people are as screwy as myself. ;-) Yes, it is very wtf? isn't it. I wonder if this is more common in people who are hard of hearing?

    I love broccoli too.

  5. lol @ pink elephants. Exactly.

    Yes, I have tinnitis in varying degrees and it comes and goes. It's been particularily noticeable lately.

    Jet plane is an apt description, yes.

    The only difference I can think of that could be related is that I haven't been wearing my hearing aids at all in the last week. Not sure why now that I think about it...

    Thanks, Suzanne.

  6. I hear a similar sound quite often. Usually at night. My audi called it a form of tinnitus.

    It actually wakes me up from deep sleep.

  7. Sounds like tinnitus to me. I can "hear" sounds that are outside my hearing range via the mystery that is tinnitus.

    I find it's worse when I am tired or stressed.

    I have a noise that sounds like someone dropping sheets of corrugated metal, it feels as if it is passing through my head from front right to back left. When it happens it wakes me up.

  8. Thanks John and Mog.

    I have been woken up by sound only a couple of times... but I sleep like the dead. It takes a lot to wake me up.

    But it's 'good' to know that others are hearing inwardly in the frequency that is shot... it's so weird, isn't it. Maybe that's why it seems so loud... so use to not hearing that sound?

    I want to understand this better.

  9. Sometimes I hear what sounds like running water. It is so real to me that I go looking for the source.

    I, too would like to get a better understanding of these phenomena, but it seems to me that science is, so far, stumped.

  10. Ah... that would explain why I'm having trouble finding anything about it then!

    I have a sound... I 'hear' the ring of my cell phone. I've gotten so use to ignoring it I've missed real calls. Just as well though, as they are usually calls from people who I don't want to talk to. ;-)

    That's interesting that you mention water, John. The man who lives below me has occassionally asked me if I'm running water when I'm not. He does wearing hearing aids... I suspect that he's experiencing similar stuff. I'll slip some info his way, me thinks.

  11. You use of the term "au naturel" really cracked me up, because that is exactly how I feel when unaided.

    Sometimes I like to walk around "au naturel" but I seldom do so, because I hate it when I do and suddenly find someone in my space.

    I don;t like the feeling of being snuck up on.

  12. There is a yoga called "Surat Shabd Yoga" that aims for liberation through listening to internal sounds. What you're hearing may be Krishna's flute.

  13. I think it may be tinnitus too. I hear phantom phones ringing too. Luckily at work my phone has a red light so I can check whether or not it's ringing.

    Love your bookshelf!

  14. "Sometimes I like to walk around "au naturel" but I seldom do so, because I hate it when I do and suddenly find someone in my space."

    lol... I love the ambiguity! ;-)

    Hi Benjamin - that is a very interesting notion, even if just to think about that noise in a very different way. Thanks for that. (Although I would say Krishna needs some serious flute lessons! ;-) Love your photos!

    You too, eh Sarah? Weird isn't it. Red light? Pah! Vibrating phones are wonnnderful!

  15. Sometimes, when it's very quiet, I hear a noise in my left ear when I have my appliances of science in. I know that this noise is the sound of the blood in my carotid artery. Maybe the running water you hear is that?? The same effect as putting a shell to your ear and hearing the sea/ocean ;-). If you feel your pulse when you hear the noise you can see if the sounds have the same rythym, if so that's likely what it is.