Minstrel Banjo

For enthusiasts of early banjo

Hey Tim, I saw your mention of tinnitus. I ain't Dave but I discovered something that REALLY helped my tinnitus - and it was BAD.

It's called Active Listening to Nothing. A few weeks ago, I'd find a quiet spot and sit, not read, not think, but just listen, or try to listen to the quiet behind (or around) the snakes and whistles in my head. Damn - it works!!! Only in a couple weeks, I don't hear it, once in a while I test it, I listen hard for the sshhhhhh, and yup, there it is, then it's gone. It's not a matter of 'not thinking about it,' I know you've probably tried that. It's a matter of retraining your brain somehow. It's a miracle to me. Last night I was banging the banjo and guitar AND singing loud and today I'm OK. There's also a guy on the internet who sells a CD, CD's, that he says help a lot. I guess you play a certain CD and you'll hear a SSHHH just below (or above) the frequency of the stuff in your head - and it dissolves. I believe it. I think Pete Townsend was one of the first to experiment with that approach and a few years ago he was raving about it.

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I've tried something similar, but did not have the discipline to see it through. It seemed that my head started pulsing and buzzing even louder than it was before being distracted with white noise, but the logic of it seemed to make sense. I will try again...thanks for the tip and encouragement.

I think the CD would be a good idea for tough cases. It makes sense. Hey, we gotta get together, up here in the land of sugar beets. Al and Brian too.

What is the name of the CD, if you don't mind plugging it? I have some mild tinnitus from my rock years also, though I usually only hear it in absolute utter silence. Like when I mention to people that I play the banjo.

Ed, you cracked me up!

When the audiologist explained about little nerves in the inner ear being irritated and firing I figured there was nothing I could do about it. Stress seems to bring it on but that's hard to get rid of comepletely and still suck air. I am interested in looking into this other technique you mention.

Any of you youngsters reading this :) its a serious issue, take some extra effort to protect your hearing. Don't agree to go to a pistol range with your crazy brother-in-law. Dave

Listen to Ol' Dan.  It is one of the areas that medicine has not figured out - restoring lost hearing.  If you play with amplified instruments, consider hearing protection.  That may go for you bones players as well.  And if you have kids using headsets - make sure the volume is not cranked.  The Walkman/IPod generation is in danger of needing hearing aids by the age of 50.

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