This Is How It Feels To Have Tinnitus
In 1991, Inspiral Carpets released their single “This is How it Feels.” And in November 2016, some 25 years later, the band’s drummer Craig Gill tragically killed himself.
According to his wife, Gill had “suffered in silence” from debilitating tinnitus, and “instead of reaching out, on that day in November, Craig made the saddest and most tragic of choices.”
Whilst the coroner recorded an open verdict, the affect that tinnitus has on ones’ mental and physical wellbeing is indisputable. According to Action on Hearing Loss, “research has shown that, for some people, tinnitus can lead to depression, anxiety, stress and sleep problems.”
Like depression and anxiety, tinnitus is an ‘invisible condition’; its affects being experienced subjectively, sometimes with vivid realism. And like depression and anxiety, talking about it can help and treatment is available.
According to the Action on Hearing Loss, “there are many treatments that can help you to ‘habituate’ your tinnitus. Habituation means reaching a state of mind where you no longer have a negative emotional response to your tinnitus, or are overly aware of it.”
The first step is always to consult a professional. You can speak to your GP, who may refer you for tinnitus counselling. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), and Tinnitus Retraining Therapy (TRT) may also be available.
Whilst the exact cause of tinnitus is unknown, tinnitus is often associated with exposure to loud noise.
In a statement issued after the Coroner’s inquest, Gill’s wife said: “for the past 20 years, Craig suffered from debilitating tinnitus, a condition caused by not protecting his hearing when enjoying the careers he loved the most – a successful musician, DJ and love of listening to music.”
Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for career musicians like Craig to experience tinnitus.
Paul Grey, who spent over 20 years touring and recording internationally as a bass guitarist with bands such as UFO, says of his own experiences with tinnitus and hearing loss: “the implications of permanent noise damage go far beyond the working environment – 24 hours a day ringing in both ears, hearing loss, sensitivity to normal noises. And I was one of those who never thought I’d get problems!”
Indeed, the risks associated with exposure to excessive noise are well known across various industries – not only the entertainment sector.
Whether you work in civil engineering or manufacturing, a noisy factory, or a nightclub, exposure to excessive noise can cause serious damage to your hearing. And if you should have been given ear protection, you might be able to make a claim for compensation.
With Mental Health Awareness week at the forefront of our attention, we are keen to spread the word about mental health and wellbeing. We’re also here to listen.
Perhaps it’s time for you to tell someone how it feels to have tinnitus?
If you think that you have been affected by work related tinnitus, get in touch with us by calling 0113 200 9787 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org