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He is the specialist in the ear and the nose disorders. He is supposed being the right man for the job. It really took me a month before deciding to go consulting one of them. At the beginning my tinnitus sat only at the very bottom of my right ear. It was a small very weak but nevertheless awkward acute sound as can be a mosquito which undertook to harass you twenty four hours out of twenty four. But this mosquito there did not take any rest in its nasty game and played of an instrument whose single note seriously started to type on my nerves. Thus arrived in the cabinet of our specialist, I explain my case to him. Before deciding, he makes me pass a test of hearing. This test reveals that I have an important loss on the acute frequencies. He questions me on the port of the walkman (at that time MP3 reader was not even imagined yet). I answer that it sometimes happens to me to listen to a little music to support the length of the transport leading me to the university, but not on a very high level considering the walkman in question was rather bottom-of-the-range having consequently a weak amplification. Obviously at twenty-three years old like much young people of my age I use to attend parties where the noise level plank sometimes to unbearable tonality. This declaration made was taken as consent of culpability and was immediately sentenced:

“Sir, you damaged your ears because you misused too much the walkman and the noisy places, you are completely unconscious!”

There, the reproach is brutal and the discounted effect is not made wait, I feel guilty!

However I retort timidly that I listen to the walkman only occasionally with a reasonable volume and I do not understand why I can be victim of a sound trauma which spare my friends who for the majority of them go more often in parties than I.

The answer is without appeal:

“Sir, we do not all have the same tolerance to noise!”

That being said except hearing the other tests did not show anything abnormal.

Our doctor concludes that my level of reduction in hearing remains light nevertheless and that consequently no equipment is necessary. Drugs are prescribed to me. It is necessary to take vasodilators, “praxilene 200” and “nootropyl 800” three times a day for 6 months.

Thus on this inventory of fixtures, I decide to avoid to the maximum the noisy places, my exits of Saturday are almost suppressed and no more walkman helmet comes in contact with my ears. Some few months later, I indeed notice a change on my tinnitus but speaking about improvement is a rather difficult step to cross. Thus 6 months later, I find myself at my otorhinolaryngologist. He notes that my hearing still fell and asks me questions aiming to suspect me of having abused with noisy place. I protest and announced inefficiency of the treatment. Indeed, during this time another acute sound took place in my right ear and in a degree of harmfulness which was multiplied by ten compared to the noise caused by the solitary mosquito which I heard 6 months before.

Moreover my hearing starts to bother me a bit. As it appears that these treatments are long to make effect, I get 6 months of additional treatment with other drugs, Vastarel and Tanakan. One cannot say that these drugs do not do anything at all since Tanakan makes me lose weight and Vastarel seems to attenuate in an infinitesimal way my Tinnitus. One thing is sure; it is that I start to feel force-fed by having to take these drugs every day for some results more than debatable. I would have done without these kilos in less because at this time I already miss credibility to girls with my sixty kilos for my meter and seventy three centimeters. Losing two additional kilos is a luxury which I will have readily abstained from. With 12 months of additional treatment I start to wonder serious questions. Meanwhile my otorhinolaryngologist briefed me on the irreversible character of my state. After 18 months of treatment nothing has changed, quite to the contrary, I have no more one single sound in each ear but a true unmatched concerto seems to have set place in the deepest of my skull.

It is time for me to carry out my military service. I try to escape it by invoking hearing loss and my Tinnitus. But I am accused of simulation and sent few times later on the Military base of Cambrai to carry out my classes there. The frequent landing of the fighter planes literally tears my tympanums, if the dance floors had partially spared me, the planes did not flunk me. Not being able to bear no more planes I am admitted to the infirmary where a young doctor gives me some explanations on how the ears works and states me in particular that some of my hair cells are damaged. The hair cells are similar to lashes as their name indicates; they are located in the internal ear known under the name of cochlea. The hair cells have as a role to transform the sound waves into electric impulses so that information can be transmitted to the brain.

Following the report of my defective hearing, I am admitted in a hospital in Lille in order to undergo a treatment by perfusion. My roommate, a young man doing his military service like me is also victim of an acute tinnitus appeared in one of his ears while firing practices. One both injects us “Piracetam” a vasodilatator during one week. Few days later my neighbour’s tinnitus completely disappeared. Some of mine decreased in intensity and my hearing is slightly improved during the treatment. But at the end of the treatment, I go back to the base still with almost as much disorder in the head.

After my military service I make my entry in the working life and find an employment as an after-sales service technician on the copiers’ domain. Copiers are photocopiers intended to print large sizes documents and one more particularly finds them in printing works or in architectures’ cabinets. I move among customers and thus have a company car. My handicap does not bother me too much because the advantage of this trade for somebody having hearing problems is not to have too much human contact, the machines generally being in little attended corridors. The year after, I become a computer hardware specialist and works during two years at IBM where I repair computers for professional customer and at private individuals and during a few times in the company laboratory with two other colleagues.

Throughout this period, my tinnitus keep on increasing and my hearing always decreases and I feel more and more embarrassment to follow conversations. Without believing in it any more I still continue to take vasodilators prescribed by Ents. At that time, I live in Paris and Doctor Francis Blum although a little abrupt in its manners is the first Ent to say to me that he does not believe too much in this history of sound trauma and proposes to stop the treatment for 6 months…

The hearing aid cost me nearly one thousand five hundred euro, the health insurance coupled with my mutual insurance company covered only the two tenth of the total cost. For this price, I expected correct performances. Yet, I was not there. I was of course very glad while leaving from the prothesist to hear noises which I was not aware to not hear them any more, but these devices are far from being able to simulate a human ear correctly. In the street, you more hear the engines noise than the words of people surrounding you. When several people speak at the same time the noise level of a person in background will be almost identical to that of a person being opposite you, which gives the impression that everyone speaks at the same time. But a curious fact started to hold my attention. My hearing aid induced an additional hearing loss of about 5db which grew blurred when removing my apparatus. At the beginning, I believed that it was due to the too strong amplification of the sounds which not appeared to me as being unreasonably amplified…

Besides my hearings problems, I suffered from some occasional disorders. I suffered from palpitation and cardiac peaks which worried so much that I consulted a cardiologist. The latter put that on stress caused by too frequent professional changes and drugs aiming at calming my spirit were prescribed me. My back also started to make me suffer atrociously. But I also put that on my professional sedentariness because when I was an itinerant technician I do not remember to often complaining for backache. When my level of stress was at its zenith as a breakdown service technician specializes in copiers, I did not have any cardiac palpitation. It was a very formative trade because I developed my autonomy while intervening on copiers of various manufacturers with as only the formation manufacturer documentations of each machine. The customers being only professionals, a broken down machine could mean the blocking of their activity. They subscribed to expensive maintenance contracts and consequently they were demanding to respect the repair delay. The change for computer hardware maintenance was for me rather resting therapy with regard to the copiers after-sales service technician.

Once at the radio I had heard that a person had been healed from tinnitus while being made her wisdom teeth removed. Since this day a glimmer of hope has germinated in my spirit. At the army, I had asked the doctor if there were a possibility that the push of my wisdom teeth could have a relationship of any kind with my hearing problems. There was in fact one of them which was growing askew because of a not replaced missing molar. But according to him there was no bond between the push of a tooth and disorders of hearing. Then, each time I consulted an Ent, I put this history of tooth up. But they all were unanimous, for them it did not have any relationship there. I ended up believing that I had dreamed this history of tinnitus related to wisdom teeth. One day I fall on a book at “Fnac” (a French book seller) entitled “Tinnitus”, his author Bernard Montain a dentist and teacher is also adept of natural therapy. This book makes a display of the various causes of tinnitus and evokes the disorders of occlusion as a possible cause of tinnitus. Nevertheless, I acquired the book during the course of the year 2000 and decided myself to take an appointment with its author only in 2002. But it is another history…