Custom molds seem to make tinnitus louder

Finally got the correct custom molds and I have noticed my tinnitus (sounds like air being slowly squeezed out of a balloon in right side) is more noticeable with the new mold. I put the tulip domes back on just to make sure. I cannot tell the molds help much with understanding speech at all over the tulips anyway, so I guess I’ll be going back to the tulips. I don’t think I will ever get use to the way my voice sounds with the molds.

Anyone else experienced this?

I haven’t noticed my tinnitus any louder with my ear molds, but then again I have always worn ITE hearing aids, and now wearing Minirite aids with ear molds. I will say this I notice my tinnitus a lot more when I mute my aids.

Tinnitus increases with stress. New molds mean a different soundscape and thus more brain capacity needed to decipher it. If your tinnitus increased, then you could also have noticed being a tad more tired in the evening with the new molds. There you have the cause for your tinnitus. It’s not the molds: It’s you! :slight_smile:

It’s new, it’s exciting, it’s slightly tiring, too and probably increases tinnitus. Luckely, it won’t stay new. You’ll adapt. If you need the molds, for instance to keep the low frequencies from leaking out, it’ll be worth the investment.

@cvkemp My tinnitus has actually decreased after I started wearing aids. Still noisy if I remove my aids, but it doesn’t keep me awake anymore.

@tim4 The way your own voice sounds, and presumably the general occlusion that you hear can be changed by the audiologist. It’s so common, that e.g. Phonak Target has quick fixes for the complain “own voice sounds to occluded”.
If you’re unsure whether the mold help with understanding speech, go to a challenging situation and test: A place with lots of people talking, like a restaurant, bar or school yard. The little improvements such as custom molds can give you that slight bit of extra understanding that makes the conversation fun instead of work.

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My tinnitus is much better with hearing aids as long as my brain the sounds it needs it only shows up when I mute my aids.

Thanks! The audi knew I didn’t like the way my voice sounded when I left with them. She said I would get more use to it as time went by. It’s not as much occlusion sounding but more like reverb or vibration sounding. That’s the problem we are trying to find a fix for if that’s possible (I’m starting to believe there’s not). Voices sound like their vibrating (like speaking into a fan) which I now believe is nerve damage and not the aids. It does help when the tulip domes are pushed in far enough that they get a good seal. When they get worked out a little, I know because the distortion gets worse. That’s why audi wanted to try the molds, for a better seal. Honestly I can’t tell they help much at all. I will do as you suggested and try to compare domes and molds in a challenging situation though.

Sounds a bit like maybe a processing artifact, like a comb filter. Could be because more than one mic is activated?

I think the objective for own voice should just be to not interfere with your listening. Meaning, get used to it perhaps. Kind of like how we hear ourselves on a recording. Certainly if it is too loud or harsh, then it should be dealt with, but otherwise it’s no so important.

Regarding the tinnitus, it could be that because you hear less ambient noise (because of the molds), you may perceive the tinnitus as louder.

These are just guesses from the peanut gallery, so take them with the proverbial grain of salt.

You may have something there.

You can test it easily - get earplugs and try them in bed.

For example, I don’t hear my tinnitus at all when I’m wearing aids, no matter the cap on them (had open dome, now closed one). When I remove aids, if I’m in the room where there’s something happening, I still don’t hear the tinnitus.
When I lie in bed when everything is much quieter, no matter if I just remove aids or I removed them several hours ago, I’ll hear the tinnitus.
And when I put my ear plugs for sleeping, tinnitus gets louder.

If I don’t put ear plugs, I will not sleep well bc noises around me will wake me up for hours.
If I wear plugs, tinnitus is loud. But still less loud than other sounds would be without plugs, so I put plugs and somehow tune out.

Maybe I should condition myself somehow that tinnitus is my lullaby :joy:

Maybe it’s because your own voice is so loud that You exceed the MPO limit on the HA settings. You could get your audiologist to try increasing MPO by say 3 dB and see whether that helps.

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Thanks I’ll mention that.

Can ones own voice be checked with REM?

Not that I can think of, but there should be settings that your Audi can make in the fitting software to help you. My aids had to be adjusted up so I could hear my on voice. When I got them I sounded too myself like I was mumbling and would talk to loud. Once they were set correctly then my voice sounds normal to me, and my wife no longer complains that I talk to loud.

Just wondering, seems like I could talk instead of listening to the recording to measure how the aids are receiving my voice.

it is my understanding that it is the sounds that are fed into the aids that is used to determine the REM. For my needs the REM only verifies that the aids are working correctly. Then my Audi’s real work starts fitting to aids to my hearing needs. If he has to redo the REM test he has to reset my aids to the REM check, then restart my fitting needs afterwards.

Yes, sound is fed through the speakers 1m away from you.

So, I think some information could be gathered when person talks, if there’s possibility to measure in real time and not only when recorded audio starts. Don’t know the name of the option.

Of course this wouldn’t be ‘fitting HAs using rems on speech’ but could provide some info, eg to see how loud some frequencies get for example.

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