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British Tinnitus Association
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Tinnitus increases in noisy environments

Hi everyone,

I have had sudden onset of tinnitus in both ears following an MRI scan at the beginning of November 2018, ironically to investigate mild tinnitus in my left ear. After 4 weeks of daily changing “T” symptoms, it has settled to the point where it’s now relatively low level background Tinnitus whilst indoors, though listening to TV for prolonged periods can be a challenge. However, when outdoors or in a busy place such as a shop or supermarket, it flairs up and only calms back down again when not exposed to the noise. It’s still early days and I’m optimistic that things will settle further over the coming weeks and months, but wondered if anyone on here had experienced similar symptoms and how did you deal with them?

All the best.


5 Replies

Gosh, talk about irony! My T is mild, but if faced with too much noise, stress or in busy places, which to me is stressful! my T does increase. I'm lucky in that my life affords me relative peace. If it does get worse in these situations I always have this inner knowing that it'll settle down, and it does every time. My gp didn't refer me anywhere, so thanks for the heads up. I won't be having an MRI anytime soon! Your T will settle, but give your ears a rest where you can. Soothing sounds where possible. Best wishes. Hayley x


Thanks Hayley, really great to hear from someone else with a similar 'T' experience. After a pretty uncomfortable month following the MRI, my symptoms are starting to settle and don't interfere that much with sleeping, which was one of my worse concerns. Seeing my GP next week regarding next steps if any. I guess it's not too early to wish you a Happy Christmas and a fabulous 2019. Kind Regards Richard x.

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I’m the opposite as I get distracted by noises in busy environments so that I don’t hear my T. It is only if the noises or music are particularly loud that I get flare ups the next day which can be for that day only or over next few days. I wear hearing aids with masking sounds so the noises have to be excessive to affect me afterwards. Even then during my flare up periods I try to get on with my life as best as I can and if I’m busy doing things then my T is at the back of my mind. Set your own agendas this way and hopefully you’ll do the same. Good luck!


Hi there, thanks for your response to my post. It's still early days for me to know specifically which noise scenarios to avoid as my 'T' has been fairly changeable and now thankfully settling over the past 4 weeks. At the moment, TV gives me a steady buzz which is not that intrusive but noticeable, fading once it's turned off. I've also noticed that town centre traffic noise can cause a flare up which again fades once I'm back in the car or home. Really appreciate your guidance and advice and take on-board keeping busy and getting on with life. After all its far far too short. All the best and good luck to you too. Kind Regards Richard.

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Hi Richard,

Of course I'd have to weigh in on this one.

My MRI brain scan was what caused me to stumble on this website. Like you, I was having the scan for what I now consider mild tinnitus. The scan shot my T through the roof and gave me hyperacusis. I looked for other cases to corroborate my claim that brain scans(at least the type I had) were not safe for tinnitus patients. I tried finding out if other makes of scanners accomidate better ear protection or are quieter but haven't been able to get consistent specifics on them.

When I read of other people's experience with it, some have no side affects. I'm glad for you that you've improved since the MRI. I'm three months out and now have catastrophic T with hyperacusis. Vertigo, headaches the works. I did have pulsatile T for a few weeks after the scan but that went away.

So far, the most I can recommend is to keep busy with something that gets you in the zone(flow state). I'm sleep deprived but find after two months, my body gave up and started sleeping regardless of the noise. Don't fight it. Consider it a friend and if it spikes, think of it as a party in your head. And most of all, AVOID NOISE! Hair dryers, chain saws, weed wackers, screaming children............

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