I’m very sad to say that last week, one of my friends attempted suicide…
It’s heartbreaking to see him in pain, but I’m extremely glad he’s still with us and that he’s working to get better.
I won’t mention his name because, as you can imagine, this is a very sensitive subject… But I still feel it’s important to talk about his story.
Because maybe you can relate to him. And I want you to know that it will get better. It’s hard to have hope and patience when you’re feeling depressed – especially with the stigma surrounding mental health.
But the truth is that mental illness is very common. So common that it’s estimated that 1 in 4 people have a mental illness.
And so many of them are not getting help because they’re afraid of ridicule…
My friend didn’t ask for help either and struggled alone until he decided he couldn’t take it anymore and decided to end his life…
He was a lucky case – someone intervened in time and he was saved. But not everyone is as lucky as him…
I’m sure you’re wondering what made him so hopeless that he couldn’t see himself living anymore… And the answer might surprise you.
It was a ringing in his ears that he couldn’t get away from – literally…
Tinnitus Leads People To Suicide
You might think that’s a silly reason to attempt suicide – and that’s the reaction my friend expected if he told anyone he was depressed.
But a constant ringing in the ear, which is a medical condition called tinnitus, can truly drive you up the wall.
Just imagine living like that 24/7, having a hard time watching your favorite TV shows, listening to music or even communicating with the people dear to you…
Tinnitus is a debilitating condition that becomes more difficult by the day. It affects your social life, your ability to have fun and even your career…
The Hidden Ugly Truth About Tinnitus
A Swedish medical study from the beginning of this year showed that 9% of women and 5.5% of men that suffer from severe tinnitus had attempted suicide.
That’s a very concerning number… And it only shows people who went to the extreme – but what about the people that get depressed because of tinnitus?
My guess is that that percentage is much, much higher…
After reviewing the study, Richard Tyler, an audiologist and professor in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at the University of Iowa said he wasn’t surprised with the findings because:
“Many tinnitus sufferers have severe problems with thoughts and emotions, hearing, sleep, and concentration.”
What’s very strange is that this condition is a hidden killer that not many people know about, even though over 20% of the world population suffers from a form of tinnitus.
I personally didn’t know much about it until I found out about my friend’s hardship…
And I think one of the key reasons why this condition is not heavily talked about or researched is because the patients themselves feel a societal pressure to “suck it up because it’s no cancer or heart disease.”
Having this mindset, they don’t feel it’s right to ask for help and end up making things much worse for themselves.
It’s true. Tinnitus is no cancer or heart disease. But as you can see from my friend’s story and the new Swedish study, tinnitus is still a life-threatening condition.
And it shouldn’t be disregarded as “silly” or “not dangerous enough.”
It’s actually scientifically proven that tinnitus has major harmful effects on the brain…
The Dangerous Effects of Tinnitus on the Brain
After visiting my friend in the hospital, I wanted to learn more about his condition. So, I searched through medical journals and found a very interesting study that could validate how he was feeling.
A team of medical experts decided to do MRI scans on people with tinnitus to see how their brains function with the constant noise in the ears…
They found that in every single patient, tinnitus affected an area of the brain called the precuneus.
The precuneus has direct contact with two important networks in the brain called the “default mode network” and the “dorsal attention network.” And these two networks complement each other.
When you’re resting, the brain allows your default mode network to take the wheel and handle background activities. This helps you relax both your mind and body.
But when you have a distraction, like noise or touch, your brain responds to those stimuli, activating the dorsal attention network. This helps you focus on a stimulus and deal with it in whatever way necessary.
I think you can already see what goes wrong when you have tinnitus. Because the condition causes you to have a constant noise in your ear, your brain never turns off the switch on your dorsal attention network.
This means that your brain is always focused – and in time, this “always-on” condition can have very damaging effects on your mental and physical health. Some of the most common symptoms are physical and mental exhaustion, insomnia, irritability, and fatigue.
The Brain Becomes Tired
Your mind needs rest to recover. Your body needs rest to recover. Being in an alert state all of the time is very unhealthy and can lead to severe depression and even self-harm…
You might be wondering why I’m telling you all of this. Well, I hope I didn’t ruin your mood with these concerning facts – but I find it extremely important to share the reality that is tinnitus.
And I urge you to spread the information if you have a friend or a family member with tinnitus. It could save a life.
Because there’s nothing more reassuring than knowing you’re not “crazy” and especially that you’re not alone…
And if you suffer from this debilitating condition, please don’t ignore it! It might seem bearable at first, but in time it only gets worse…
When my friend went through this traumatizing experience – I wanted to give him hope. Real hope. So, I researched tinnitus treatments and here is what I found…
Is There A Solution For This Condition?
The problem with tinnitus is that, as I said before, there is not enough research on this condition.
So, the solutions proposed by the medical system usually involve pain relief. But I recommend you don’t abuse pain relief drugs like ibuprofen or aspirin, because long-time use can lead to permanent hearing loss.
Instead, one treatment that seems promising is sound therapy – listening to relaxing sounds like ocean waves. These sounds drown out the tinnitus noise and might help your mind enter the “default mode network” and finally relax.
This type of therapy can offer you temporary relief and can boost your mood and energy levels.
I hope you found this information helpful and that at least one person can benefit from learning about the dangerous effects of tinnitus on the brain.
If your tinnitus keeps you up at night, you might want to check out this military hack that puts you to sleep in 2 minutes.