"Mirror, mirror on the wall. Who has ... - British Tinnitus ...

British Tinnitus Association

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"Mirror, mirror on the wall. Who has the loudest tinnitus of all?"


Professionals ask me how loud my tinnitus is. "Very loud" is my reply. When I started with T it was a "loud" annoying high pitched ringing in my right ear. The left ear soon joined in. Every two weeks it seemed to get louder and I went through all the usual emotions- fear, anxiety, depression, anger etc.

Now, if I sit in a quiet room within 45 seconds the noise is so loud that I can't believe that the neighbours can't hear it. If I wake during the night it is like a smoke alarm going off.

It is louder than a telly, I can hear in when I am driving and the high pitched sound sits on top of any ambient sound. Even in an noisy restaurant it will be sitting on top. My friend says his is often like standing beside Niagra Falls.

My question is to my cyber buddies is "Does it actually get louder or do we just perceive it to be louder?. I know that there is no actual sound. So is it the perception of the perception of sound that is changing?. How loud is your sound, or should I say, perception of sound. What scale do you use to measure or describe it?

I don't know how else to describe the loudness of my T so would welcome suggestions.

I hope that this post does not make your T louder but would appreciate your view. After all, we are the experts!!!

Peace and quiet to all.



10 Replies

There isn't a sound, so it can't be directly measured. What you can measure is how loud a sound has to be in order that you can't hear your T anymore - MML 'Minimum Masking Level'.

Mine is around 70db on a good day and around 85db on a bad day.

Hello ruudboy. Thanks for reply. Not sure how to measure mine as it sits on top of any other sound. I also get distortion.

Anyway, still plodding on.



A private ent at Harley St told me it can go to 80 db.

At most times i hear mine above all ambient noise.

I would guess mine is 60/80db most of the time.

ade-the-pade in reply to Lioned

Hello Lioned.

Sounds pretty loud.

Wishing you peace and quiet.


I read mine from 1 to 10 during the day and very so I can go up from 5 to 9 and then night is 10.

Hello Freddie. Sorry to hear that. It must be hell. I still sleep so thst us a god send. i take mirtazipin which seems yo do the trick.

Wishing you peace and quiet.


It's difficult to put tinnitus volume on a scale and as Rhudboy says, the only way it can be measured is to listen to a comparable sound then signal when it reaches the volume you experience. My wife asks me every day how loud mine is and I use a 1 to 10 scale as a rough guide to try and explain to her. I found a sound on the internet which replicates my t almost exactly, so she understands what I hear. On good days which are very few and far between, it can be as low as 2-3, on normal days it will sit around 7 and when it spikes, it goes off the scale. As far as decibels go, I haven't a clue but I always hear it above all other sounds around me so it must be pretty loud.

Thanks for your reply. My T sits above all other sounds as well. That makes it hard to measure. I too played a sound similar to mine ti my wife. After 5 secs she thought that it was unbearable. Us T sufferers are a hardy bunch!!

Wishing you peace abd and quiet.


Arrrrrgggghhhh, someone just used the M word, never want to hear( pun deffo intended) that word again , so I will spell it,,, m.i.r.t.a.z.e.p.i.n.e.,,,,, whilst I was on my high walking the streets at all hours with no sleep for almost 2 full weeks, the g.p. Nabbed me and put me on that , so for those of you who want to know the outcome,, just think,,, “ Woodentop joined the walking dead” for the next series, And it flattened me , just could not tolerate it whatsoever,, anyway about the actual topic, personally I believe I have the loudest T of anyone, but no doubt it could be I actually have the least T and it’s just that I am a poor coper??? I would love to be able to hear some else’s T, enabling me to have more insight,my T is a very very high pitched whistle in both my ears but I do not understand when folk put the word “ringing” ? It doesn’t mean anything to me as I think of the school bell or church bells, would like to understand this word in relation to T, praying that one day we all experience as Simon & Garfunkel sing, “ this is the sound of SILENCE!!!! Keep fight the fight you guys.

Hello Woodentop. My T is also superhigh pitched ringing. Like a dog whistle only louder. I get on fine with Mirtazipin. it really helps me sleep. That is a god send at the end of a noisy day.

Wishing you peace and quiet.


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