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Do you use hearing protection while playing?
Yes 13%  13%  [ 6 ]
No 67%  67%  [ 32 ]
Sometimes 21%  21%  [ 10 ]
Total votes : 48
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2014 8:04 pm 
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nursefroggy wrote:
An Draighean wrote:
nursefroggy wrote:

How do you cope with tinnitus?


I've suffered from it for so long that I can just ignore it 95% of the time. It bothers me more at night than any time else. During the day, I can play music all day as a distraction, which helps my ADD also.


Does it help to play quiet music at night? I set a timer to shut the music off after I've fallen asleep, so it doesn't wake me up later during the night.


I used to do that every night, when I was a young man. The turntable would shut itself off after the last record. Haven't done it for donkey's ages though - maybe I should try it again. No longer have a turntable though. :)

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2014 12:56 am 
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Whistles. Pipes. Fiddles. Bodhrans.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 05, 2014 12:32 pm 
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I went ahead and bought myself a set of Bose QC25 noise-canceling headphones (I already have another make of nc headphones, as I mentioned in an earlier post). Have now tested with various whistles.

1) The sound level of the whistle is greatly reduced.
2) BUT (for a D whistle), the sound level reducement is ONLY due to the muffling effect of the headphones themselves, not due to the noise cancelling electronics. With or without the electronics switched on, the sound level of the whistle is subjectively exactly the same. The very noticable difference is that with the nc circuit on the sound of the heat pump in my living room disappears, same with the sound of a (not too near) passing airplane. Note that the muffling effect of the physical construction of these Bose headphones is very noticable, which is of course part of the whole design. And much more than my other brand of ear-covering NC headphones.
3) The frequency response sounds fine, i.e. the whistle sounds natural, just not loud. Great, actually.
4) An A whistle, on the other hand (Jerry Freeman's 'tweaked genereation A') does get a little effect on the lower notes when the electronics is switched on. The effect is probably better the lower you go (I don't have anything lower than alto G, not tested yet). This is as expected when you know how noise cancelling electronics works.

Conclusion:
- Using the Bose QC25 headphones to reduce the sound level of a soprano whistle works very well indeed.
- That's entirely (as far as my subjective observation can determine) due to the muffling effect of the headphones, not due to the noise cancelling electronics. But the nc circuit makes for a quiet environment where you only hear the whistle..
- It sounds good
- Lower-frequency whistles, unlike soprano whistles, will also get a slight additional effect of the nc circuitry, but as far as tinnitus is concerned we probably only worry about soprano whistles anyway. Well, maybe. For my variant of it, at least.

-Tor


Last edited by Tor on Fri Dec 05, 2014 2:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 05, 2014 1:00 pm 
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Wouldn't musician's earplugs do the same job for you then, without the electronics etc?

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 05, 2014 2:06 pm 
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Possibly yes. I have never tried that type of earplugs though so I'm not able to compare. I have used "normal" earplugs on concerts (and sometimes on airplanes) and they get a bit uncomfortable after some time. I'm told that musician's earplugs are better. (Those Bose phones are definitely comfortable. Not something to wear at concerts though.. I think)

-Tor


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 05, 2014 3:17 pm 
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Flexismart, I did try that, but it was awkward blowing the whistle at the same time. The hounds though it was hilarious!

Thanks for clarifying your experience with the Bose QC25, Tor. I tried using the phones without the NC for the High D and Eb whistles, and found the results varied with the individual whistles. The O'Brien Rover does nicely with just the phones, while the Generation and Carey Parks, do better with the noise cancelling on. A real bonus, is being able to hook up to a video or CD, and play the music into the phones, while cancelling most of the external noise. This allows considerably lower listening volumes. I do find that there is a considerable reduction in volume and timbre when playing a low D, MK Pro F or the piano. For me, anything loud sets off the internal whistles, whines & dental drills, etc., so every bit of volume reduction helps. My experience may be quite different from yours, as the hearing loss is a combination of genetic neural loss and conductive loss.

Wouldn't it be fascinating to hear music through a fine musician's brain? Likely, there are nuances one could only dream of.

Mr. Gumby, for the musician's earplugs, are the adapters purchased online and then fitted into a special ear mould by an audiologist? Lynn didn't mention in ear plugs, other than to say to avoid the in ear noise cancelling ones. Any thoughts?
Do the musician's plugs have a vent to permit the air pressure on either side to balance out? This feature makes a huge difference with hearing aides.

Off to toot to the hounds :D


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 5:48 pm 
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I've suffered from Tinnitus for decades. I often describe it as ten thousand crickets chirping in the background and its more or less constant. Most of the time, including when in conversation or playing an instrument, I've sort of learned to tune it out, mostly anyway.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 11:15 pm 
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Chuck_Clark wrote:
I've suffered from Tinnitus for decades. I often describe it as ten thousand crickets chirping in the background and its more or less constant. Most of the time, including when in conversation or playing an instrument, I've sort of learned to tune it out, mostly anyway.


Hi Chuck,
Are there any things you notice that alter the level of tinnitus? Or is it constant?


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 8:46 pm 
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There are some very inexpensive ways to protect your hearing, so much so that there's little to lose and much to gain in beginning there (though I don't know whether it will help with tinnitus). First, there are foam cylinders for sale in packs of 100 in drug stores (Walgreens, CVS) for a couple of bucks. What matters there is knowing how to use them. You roll one end tween your fingers and, meanwhile, pull on the top of your ear. Then you insert the narrowed end into the ear canal and let go of the ear, pushing more or less gently on the outside of the cylinder while the part inside expands. Second, there are industrial 'ear muffs', five or six bucks, for use around machinery, that work very well (in my experience) with whistles and flutes. Takes a little getting used to but you can hear your instrument very well, even sounds better. I've had lots and lots of experience with audiologists, for decades, and a good one is hard to find, while a bad one is very bad. I tried musician's custom made earplugs and basically they were, for me, worthless in that they didn't stop enough sound. Through away a good deal of money, and then they tried to overcharge me. Anyhow these basic, very cheap methods, described above, have proven, in my case anyhow, the most effective, better than remedies twenty times their price.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 6:07 pm 
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A quick update: A musician friend, who used to host the now defunct local Irish Sessions, was over for coffee Sunday and told me about a new Session that was starting up later that day. She encouraged me to take a whistle and join in, so I grabbed my headphones and set out. With the headphones on, it was possible to stay for the entire three hours without having twenty dentist drills, whistling tea-kettles and howling banshees over take the music. Okay, the banshee was likely me tooting the whistle quietly in the background, as far away from the mikes as possible.

Pure bliss! :D

No one took offence to the NC headphones and the only person to ask about them said he might get himself a pair.

The icing on the musical cake is that I was invited to 'bring C & D whistles and join the actual circle' for the next week's session.
As a complete newbie, I'm nervous as a drop of water on a hot skillet, yet about as excited as can be.

Off to practice...
:love:


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:44 am 
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[Thread revival. - Mod]

nursefroggy wrote:
Just returned from a consultation with my audiologist. Lynn gave the Bose noise canceling headphones a ringing endorsement. Sorry, under the circumstances, that pun was irresistible.

She uses the Bose NC phones herself and said she 'loves them.' Lynn did caution against using high volume settings when listening to music, as the headphones can be cranked up quite loud. She also suggested that hearing aides be removed when using the phones to prevent feedback squealing.

You can guess what just hit the top of my Christmas wish list.

Play on...
Nurse Froggy


Dear Nurse Froggy
your post is from 2014, and I am reading it in 2020.....having just become aware of how my whistling irritates my tinnitus.....I see that Bose noise canceling phones are $400! Did you find something less expensive? or, bite the bullet? I am using ear plugs now and they do make a difference. Also, I have a Carey Parks Everyman whistle (High D) which has become my favorite. It feels great in my mouth, well balanced, needn't be warmed up, holds its tune very nicely, AND the mute ring is wonderful. Needs more effort for the low notes, but that is OK with me. THANK YOU SINCERELY FOR YOUR THOROUGH POSTS DEALING WITH TINNITUS AND FIGHTING IT....I agree with you, NOT playing is NOT an option!


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 07, 2020 1:14 pm 
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I too am in the "10,000 Crickets Club".

About 6 months ago I noticed online a new ear plug design, which reduces sound transmission a large % because it put a metal cap on the outside of the ear plug which stopped another portion of the sound. If I find it I'll post a link.

The cylinder style foam plugs are what I prefer. I tried some of the rounded-tip tapered foamies but they don't seem to make a reliable sound seal. I take the cylinder ones with me everywhere, and put them on if I'm near traffic or loud humming areas of any kind, and it really calm the crickets. I've noticed that I'm in quiet for some time, and in the mornings, the high pitched humming is at a much lower volume. If I'm out around noise, the volume of the ear buzz goes up for hours afterwards.

I strongly urge all flute and whistle players to practice with ear plugs in. Every flute player aged 3 to 35 should always be using ear plugs at least in the right ear, when practicing. That ear takes more abuse than the left ear. On whistle it's more evenly balanced. The crickets aren't worth inviting. Ear plugs should be standard supply for all school class musicians and musicians practicing on their own.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 07, 2020 2:32 pm 
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I like the "Alpine musicsafe pro" earplugs. They have three different inserts for different levels of noise reduction. I don't need them for whistles and flutes however. But I did play ocarina for a while and that is probably one of the most damaging instruments for your ears. High sound pressure, very pure sound and very close to the ears. Can't play it for more than a few minutes without protection. Maybe with the exception of the bass ocarina I own. With whistles it very much depends on the whistle and the room you're practicing in. I wouldn't play my Thunderbird high D without earplugs in a small room. But outside it would be fine. But that's all nothing compared to what I did in my younger years when I played electric guitar in different bands. After some concerts I was more or less deaf for some time.
But at least one of my flutes can be dangerous too. I call it "the monster" and it can be played hellishly loud. But I can play it rather softly, too.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 08, 2020 7:41 am 
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Just wanted to note that while I've never seen the wearing of hearing protection in ITM, it's standard in the Highland pipe band world, for obvious reasons.

It's the snare drums that are the worst, one snare probably as loud as a half-dozen pipers.

BTW where I work we have to be very strict about the dispensing of medical advice, of people diagnosing each other's ailments and suggesting courses of treatment.

It's California and herbal this and natural that are all the rage, and people will take a class or two and set themselves up as experts.

We have to constantly warn employees about it. Sorry to say but someone who frequently crosses the line is a nurse at his other job. He's not a nurse at our workplace, he's not examining people in a professional role, yet he will offer diagnoses and prescribe courses of treatment after chatting with fellow employees.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 08, 2020 8:23 am 
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I sometimes use earplugs like the Etymotics to reduce volume without overly affecting sound quality. I have tinnitus and, after playing whistle for around six months, went to see my audiologist. My audiogram was the same, and he didn't seem overly concerned about playing whistle. Some of my whistles are clearly louder or, for whatever reason, seem to irritate my ears more than others. My Carbony standard D doesn't seem to bother me much--though tunes with a lot of high A's and B's are more irritating to my ears--though I assume that's true for most folks. I mostly only wear the earplugs now at sessions (or at least when we used to have such things in-person) or sometimes if I'm learning a tune and need to play high sections over and over. I think room acoustics make a difference too--playing in my living room (good-sized open space) is less irritating tinnitus-wise than my very tiny home office. Duration also seems relevant.

In terms of dealing with tinnitus, the best advice I've found is that the problem isn't the sound, it's our reaction to the sound. https://rewiringtinnitus.com/treating-t ... the-noise/

In the end, I'd recommend anyone concerned about hearing loss or related issues to see an audiologist.


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