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Whoosh [hwoosh, hwoosh, woosh, woosh] noun 1. a loud, rushing noise, as of air or water: a great whoosh as the door opened. verb (used without object) 2. to move swiftly with a gushing or hissing noise: gusts of wind whooshing through the trees. verb (used with object) 3. to move (an object, a person, etc.) with a whooshing motion or sound: The storm whooshed the waves over the road. Also, woosh. Origin: 1840-1850; imit.

Pulsatile tinnitus is not tinnitus.
Pulsatile tinnitus is a rhythmical noise that is synchronous with the patient's heartbeat.

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Poll Results: How Many Doctors Have You Seen About Your Whoosh?
0           14%     (3 votes)
1-2        43%     (9 votes)
2-5        33%     (7 votes)
5-10      10%     (2 votes)
10+        0%      (0 votes)
Total Votes: 21
Thanks for voting.  Please see the latest Whooshers.com poll!
Fri, October 23, 2009 | link          Comments

When White Noise Is Your Best Friend

At my office, there's a defective air conditioning vent on the wall behind my desk.  So, from about April through the end of September, the air roars through like an industrial fan and the temperature can't be controlled, despite various attempts to fix it.  The only solution is to turn the air off completely - in the entire building.  That option is a non-option in the middle of summer for both my colleagues AND me.  

Prior to my pulsatile tinnitus, I complained about the vent noise.  A lot.  And my office felt like a meat locker - so cold!  

But Summer 2009 was different - my first summer with pulsatile tinnitus.  The roar of the air conditioning was my best friend!  I happily brought a wool sweater with me to work each day and was grateful for the air vent that masked my newly acquired whoosh.  No complaints. 

Then fall arrived.  The air conditioning in the building has been turned off, and oh, how I miss the white noise.  The heat comes through a different pipe, and that pipe works well.  Quite, QUIETLY well.  Time to find another way to adjust my office surroundings and manage my whoosh until next summer. 

Which brings me to www.SimplyNoise.com, a Web site that provides free and easily accessible white noise on their homepage.  And no, they're not paying me to write this; in fact, I found THEM, and I chose to post this because I think the service they provide is great for whooshers.  Plus, the sound files they provide are free of charge.

The lovely people at SimplyNoise.com provide a quick and easy way to make your own perfect noise masker stream right from your computer.  All you do is pick the kind of noise (white, pink, or brown/red) that best masks the sound you hear, and then you adjust the volume.  Voila!  You can even choose the oscillating feature, so that the sound goes in and out, a little bit like the sound of ocean waves.  I find that the steady, non-oscillating sound is a better masker for my pulsatile tinnitus, but the beauty of SimplyNoise.com is that you create what works for YOU.  

These days, the first thing I do when I get to the office is turn on my computer, connect to the Internet, go to SimplyNoise.com and take a minute or so to create my own white noise stream.  I minimize the window and let it run all day.  I find this approach to be much more convenient for my work space than using a traditional sound machine.

So, dear whooshers, give SimplyNoise.com a try.  I think you'll be glad you did!  Let us know what you think.  


Wed, October 21, 2009 | link          Comments

Whoosh, Whoosh, Whoosh, Happy Anniversary, Whoosh, Whoosh

It occured to me today that I've been whooshing for 8 months.  Here's a rough summary: 

Month One: Oblivion. Just barely noticing the whoosh. It's there, but it's no big deal, right?  It'll go away. 

Month Two: A discovery: the whoosh is called pulsatile tinnitus.  Googling.  Too much Googling.  Googling pulsatile tinnitus is like asking for an anxiety attack.  Admission to family and friends: Yes, I hear noises.  It's just one noise, really.  It sounds like my heartbeat in my ear.  Remember when you were little and you'd put one of those big shells up to your ear to hear the sound of the ocean?  It's like that, but it pulses.  Whooooosh.  Whooooosh.  It's constant.  Yeah, it's like the ocean, but it's not peaceful.  Trust me.  

Month Three: Anxiety.  Appointments with doctors.  Frustration.  Missing work.  Depression.  WORRY.  I now understand why William Shatner almost killed himself because of his tinnitus.  I get it.  And they say that the beating sound of pulsatile tinnitus is often worse (and more difficult to mask/ignore) than non-pulsatile.  It may be an indicator that something in my body isn't right.  Great.  Hello, doctors?  Help me?  I walked out of a movie and a lovely classical symphony concert because I couldn't concentrate on anything but the whoosh.  This is crazy.  CRAZY, I tell you!

Month Four: Good days and bad days.  Okay, more bad days than good.  Finding ways to cope.  Trying all sorts of things.  Everything.  Seeking advice and pep talks from fellow whooshers.  Started this site.  So glad that other whooshers are finding it.  There are so many whooshers like me!  Some have been whooshing for years.  DECADES!  How is this possible?  I didn't even know what pulsatile tinnitus was four months ago.  Buying all kinds of weird looking things and devices to mask the sound (I'll end up throwing most of them out).  Still, open to ideas.  All except those "cure pulsatile tinnitus by taking this pill" ads that show up as I'm Googling.  Note to self: at some point in life, sue those people for misleading advertisements and for taking advantage of DESPERATE people like me.

Actually, I challenged them right here on Whooshers.com to contact me with evidence that their claims are legitimate and I haven't yet heard from anyone.  Still waiting.  Still not believing a word of it.  If you're behind one of these miracle pills and can send me PROOF your pills work like a charm, or if you're a whoosher who has had relief from said pills, I'd still looove to be proven wrong.  But I digress ...

Month Five: More bad days than good days.  More whooshing.  Is it getting louder?  Missing SILENCE. Tired.

Month Six: Trying not to focus on the whooshing.  Taking a mental summer break from the worry related to whooshing.  Theoretically, anyway.  More appointments with doctors.  Moody. 

Month Seven: More appointments with doctors.  Moody.  Still. whoosh. ing.

Month Eight: More good days than bad days.  How come?  No idea.  Maybe all those cheesy songs about time being a healer are right.  The bad days are still pretty bad, but they are less frequent.  Still searching for answers.  Finding balance so as not to make myself crazy.

It's a challenge.

Happy Whoosherversary!  When is yours?

Sat, October 17, 2009 | link          Comments

Poll Results: I Am A Whoosher In:

the USA: 83%

the UK: 9%

Canada: 4%

Other (Australia) 4%

Thanks for voting!  If you missed this poll, it's not too late to participate! Leave an anonymous comment below or send an email to whooshers@gmail.com with your location and we'll add it to the statistics.  

Wed, October 14, 2009 | link          Comments

Take A Tinnitus Survey

A study coordinated by the University of Iowa invites tinnitus sufferers to particpate in this online survey.  It took me about 20-25 minutes to make my way through it.  

CLICK HERE to open the survey in a new browser window. 

Mon, October 12, 2009 | link          Comments

BBC News: "Technique Can Pinpoint Tinnitus" UPDATE

A recent study at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, Michigan suggests that, with the help of a new imaging technique called magnetoencephalography (MEG), doctors can isolate the part of the brain that is activated when someone experiences tinnitus. 

I'm not a doctor, but my hunch is that this is particularly good news for people who suffer from "regular" tinnitus (the non-pulsatile kind), since the underlying cause is often more difficult to find in those cases.  Nevertheless, this new technique may provide answers or hints to treatment for us all. 

A big thanks to "Steve" for passing this news along to Whooshers.com!

Also, many thanks to Dr. Susan Bowyer and Dr. Michael Seidman from Henry Ford Hospital for their work on this study.

UPDATE: CLICK HERE to read an article featuring a pulsatile tinnitus sufferer, written for the UK paper, The Independent, in response to the news above.

Fri, October 9, 2009 | link          Comments

Whooshing & TMJ Disorders

Here's an interesting question: Could your dentist have the answer to the underlying cause of your whoosh? 

Disorders of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ), a joint located on each side of your head in front of your ears where the lower jaw meets your skull, are sometimes responsible for a variety of symptoms, including pulsatile tinnitus. 

According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, over 10 million people suffer from TMJ disorders.  The Mayo Clinic provides additional information on TMJ disorders here.

It's important to point out that many TMJ disorder sufferers do not experience pulsatile tinnitus. However, of the TMJ disorder sufferers that report hearing varying kinds of noises, many have described the sound as like a heartbeat or a whooshing, swooshing, throbbing pulse sound in one ear. 

Some TMJ disorder sufferers are whooshers!  In fact, if a TMJ disorder is idenitfied as the cause of pulsatile tinnitus, it can often be corrected and cured.  Yes, cured!

Are you a whoosher or former whoosher diagnosed with a TMJ disorder?  It would be helpful to hear from you about your symptoms and the circumstances leading to your diagnosis.  What kinds of tests did your dentist or physician use to aid in your diagnosis?  Please leave a comment below or email whooshers@gmail.com.



Sun, October 4, 2009 | link          Comments

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Diagnosis and Treatment of Pulsatile Tinnitus, Dr. Maksim Shapiro, NYU Neurointerventional Radiology Section, NYU Langone Medical Center - neuroangio.org

Radiation Dose Chart - American Nuclear Society (ANS) Public Information Resources Page: Click here for an interactive dose chart for various medical diagnostic tests. A downloadable and printable version is also available on this page. Discuss with your doctors.

Find a Neurotologist: American Neurotological Society (ANS) Membership Roster

Find a Neurointervention Specialist: Society of Neurointerventional Surgery (SNIS)- Click on "Doctor Finder"

Find a Neuro-Ophthalmologist: The North American Neuro-Ophthalmology Society (NANOS)

Site: Neuroangio.org - Your neurovascular education and information resource. Patient Information.

UCSF Pulsatile Tinnitus Clinic

Article: "Pulsatile Tinnitus: Differential Diagnosis and Radiological Work-Up," Sjoert A. H. Pegge, Stefan C. A. Steens, Henricus P. M. Kunst, and Frederick J. A. Meijer, Department of Radiology and Nuclear Medicine, Radboud University Medical Center Nijmegen and Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Radboud University Medical Center Nijmegen, The Netherlands. (SEE TABLE 1).

Presentation: "Algorithm for Evaluation of Rhythmic Tinnitus," Douglas E Mattox, MD, Patricia Hudgins, MD, Jahrsdoerfer Lecture, University of Virginia, March 25, 2010. (This link is to the abstract/summary)

Presentation: "Imaging of the Patient with Tinnitus," Mary Beth Cunnane MD, Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, Dec 2013. (NEW! Mentions Pulsatile Tinnitus and Whooshers.com. Republished with Permission.)

Article: "Imaging in Pulsatile Tinnitus: Diagnostic Pearls and Potential Pitfalls," B. S. Purohit, R. Hermans, K. Op de beeck; 1SINGAPORE/SG, 2Leuven/BE, European Society of Radiology, 2014.

Article: "Imaging In Pulsatile Tinnitus : When Should It Ring A Bell?" G. Bathla1, V. Chong; 1singapore/SG, 2Singapore/SG, European Society of Radiology, 2012."

Article: "Pulsatile Tinnitus: Contemporary Assessment and Management," Aristides Sismanis, Current Opinion in Otolaryngology & Head & Neck Surgery: October 2011 - Volume 19 - Issue 5 - p 348357 doi: 10.1097/MOO.0b013e3283493fd8, Otology and neuro-otology: Edited by Myles L. Pensak.

NEW Article: "Emergence of Venous Stenosis as the Dominant Cause of Pulsatile Tinnitus," Eytan RazErez NossekDaniel Jethanamest, Vinayak Narayan, Aryan Ali, Vera Sharashidze, Tibor Becske, Peter K. Nelson, Maksim Shapiro, Originally published8 May 2022 https://doi.org/10.1161/SVIN.121.000154, American Heart Association Journal - Stroke: Vascular and Interventional Neurology. 2022;0:e000154

Article: "Temporal Bone: Vascular Tinnitus," William W.M. Lo and M. Marcel Maya, Vascular, pp.1361-1374, 2003.

Article: "Diagnostic Clues in Pulsatile Tinnitus (Somatosounds)," Carlos Herraiza and José Miguel Aparicioa, Unidad de Acúfenos; Instituto ORL Antolí-Candela, Madrid, Spain; Unidad de Otorrinolaringología, Fundación Hospital Alcorcón, Madrid, Spain; Otorrinolaringología, Hospital Quirón, Madrid, Spain, Acta Otorrinolaringol Esp. 2007;58(9):426-33. This is a link to the article abstract.

Article: "How I Struggled with (PULSATILE) Tinnitus," The Story of Actor Graham Cole, Daily Mail Online, January 10, 2007.

Article: "I Got Lifesaving OP for Whooshing Thanks to US Help," David Powell, Daily Post UK, DPW West, Feb 19, 2013.

Article: "Vital Signs: An Unwelcome Ringing," by Dr. Christopher Linstrom, Discover Magazine, April 2010. (About a cured patient with pulsatile tinnitus symptoms!)

Article: "Tinnitus Highlights Poor Doctor Patient Communication," Martin Young, MBChB, FCS(SA), Diagnosis and Treatment, KevinMd.Com, November 2010.

Article: "Pulsatile Tinnitus: Recent Advances in Diagnosis," Aristides Sismanis MD, Wendy R. K. Smoker, MD, The Laryngoscope, Volume 104, Issue 6, pages 681-688, June 1994. ABSTRACT (Summary)

Article: "Neuroradiologic Assessment of Pulsatile Tinnitus," Department of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery Loyola University Medical Center, Maywood, IL: Dr Kircher and Dr Leonetti; Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Henry Ford Health System, Detroit, MI: Dr Standring; Presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head Neck Surgery, Chicago, IL. Sept. 22-24, 2008. (CLICKING THIS LINK WILL DOWNLOAD THE PDF FILE)

Article: "Imaging of Tinnitus: A Review," Jane L. Weissman, MD and Barry E. Hirsch, MD, Radiology, August 2000.

Article: "Imaging in Pulsatile Tinnitus," G. Madania and S.E.J. Connor, Clinical Radiology, Volume 64, Issue 3, Pages 319-328 (March 2009).

Article: "Imaging of the Patient With Tinnitus," Mary Beth Cunnane MD, Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, December 31, 2013. (NEW! Mentions Whooshers.com and PULSATILE tinnitus as well.)

Article: "Imaging of Pulsatile Tinnitus: A Review of 74 Patients," Guner Sonmez, C Cinar Basekim, Ersin Ozturk, Atilla Gungor, Esref Kizilkaya, Clinical Imaging, Volume 31, Issue 2, Pages 102-108 (March 2007). (This is an abstract/summary-you have to pay to see the article in its entirety)

Article: "Pulsatile Tinnitus: A Review of 84 Patients," Daniel Waldvogel, Heinrich P. Mattle, Matthias Sturzenegger and Gerhard Schroth, Journal of Neurology, Volume 245, Number 3, 137-142, DOI: 10.1007/s004150050193, November 12, 1997.

Article: "Role of Angiography in the Evaluation of Patients With Pulsatile Tinnitus," Edward J. Shin, MD; Anil K. Lalwani, MD; Christopher F. Dowd, MD, Laryngoscope 110: November 2000. (PDF FILE)

Article: "Angioplasty and Stenting for Intractable Pulsatile Tinnitus Caused by Dural Venous Sinus Stenosis: A Case Series Report," Li Baomin, Shi Yongbing, and Cao Xiangyu, Dept of Neurosurgery, Chinese PLA General Hospital, Beijing, Otol Neurotol. 35.366-370. Dec 2014.

Article: "CT Angiography as a Screening Tool for Dural Arteriovenous Fistula in Patients with Pulsatile Tinnitus: Feasibility and Test Characteristics," J. Narvid, H.M. Do, N.H. Blevins and N.J. Fishbein, American Journal of Neuroradiology 32:446-453, March 2011.

Article: "Brain Dural Arteriovenous Fistula (BDAVF)," Patient Information, www.NeuroAngio.org

Article: "Usefulness of C-Arm Cone-Beam Computed Tomography in Endovascular Treatment of Traumatic Carotid Cavernous Fistulas: A Technical Case Report," Sato, Kenichi MD, PhD; Matsumoto, Yasushi MD; Kondo, Ryushi MD, PhD; Tominaga, Teiji MD, PhD, Neurosurgery: August 2010 - Volume 67 - Issue 2 - p 467470.

Article (Abstract): "A Convenient Sonographic Technique for Diagnosis of Pulsatile Tinnitus Induced by a High Jugular Bulb," The American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine, Minoru Nakagawa, MD, Norimitsu Miyachi, MLT and Kenjiro Fujiwara, MD, Department of Neurosurgery (M.N., K.F.) and Clinical Laboratory (N.M.), Kosei General Hospital, Hiroshima, Japan, J Ultrasound Med 27:139-140 0278-4297, 2008.

Article: "Surgical Treatment of the High Jugular Bulb in Patients with Ménières Disease and Pulsatile Tinnitus," V. Couloigner, A. Bozorg Grayeli, D. Bouccara, N. Julien and O. Sterkers, European Archives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology Volume 256, Number 5, 224-229, DOI: 10.1007/s004050050146 (ABSTRACT)

Article: "Brain AVM," (arteriovenous malformation), MayoClinic.com

Article: "Chiari Malformation," MayoClinic.com

Article: "Ménière's Disease," National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD)

Article: "TMJ Disorders," MayoClinic.com

Article: "Anemia," American Society of Hematology, Hemotology.org

Article: "Pseudotumor Cerebri," (also called Benign Intracranial Hypertension) MayoClinic.com

Article: "Pulse-Synchronous Tinnitus," The Intracranial Hypertension Research Foundation

Article: "Coarctation of the Aorta," MayoClinic.com

Article: "Man Cured of Hearing His Eyeballs Move," www.bbc.co.uk, July 27, 2011. Superior Canal Dehiscence Syndrome (SCDS)

Article: "Diagnosis and Cure of Venous Hum Tinnitus," Laryngoscope, Chandler JR, 93(7):892-5, July 1983.

Article: (Abstract) "Sinus Wall Reconstruction for Sigmoid Sinus Diverticulum and Dehiscence: A Standardized Surgical Procedure for a Range of Radiographic Findings," Dr. DJ Eisenman, Department of Otorhinolaryngology - Head & Neck Surgery, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland; Otology Neurotology, 32(7):1116-9; September 2011.

Article: (Abstract) "Awake Embolization of Sigmoid Sinus Diverticulum Causing Pulsatile Tinnitus: Simultaneous Confirmative Diagnosis and Treatment," Park YH, Kwon HJ, Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, Chungnam National University School of Medicine, Daejeon, Republic of Korea, Interv Neuroradiol. 2011 Sep;17(3):376-9. Epub 2011 Oct 17. (NEW!)

Article: "A New Therapeutic Procedure for Treatment of Objective Venous Pulsatile Tinnitus," Sanchez TG, Murao M, Medeiros HRT, Kii M, Bento RF, Caldas JG, et al. Int Tinnitus J. 2002;8(1):54-57.

Article: "Glomus Tympanicum," The New England Journal of Medicine, Volume 362:e66, Number 22, June 3, 2010.

Article: "Resolution of Pulsatile Tinnitus Following an Upper Mediastinal Lymph Node Resection," Wang YZ, Boudreaux JP, Campeau RJ, Woltering EA, South Med J. 2010 Apr;103(4):374-7.

Article: (Abstract) "Dissection of the Internal Carotid Artery After SCUBA-Diving: A Case Report and Review of the Literature," Franz Hafner, MD,* Thomas Gary, MD,* Froehlich Harald, MD,* Ernst Pilger,* Reinhard Groell, PD,w and Marianne, Brodmann* "Neurologist. 17(2):79-82, March 2011. (NEW!)

Article: "Carotid-Cavernous Sinus Fistula," Bobby S. Korn, M.D., Ph.D., and Kang Zhang, M.D., Ph.D., N Engl J Med 2011; 364:e15, February, 24, 2011. (WARNING: GRAPHIC IMAGES)

Article: "Pulsatile Tinnitus Cured by Mastoidectomy," Duvillard C, Ballester M, Redon E, Romanet P., Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, Hôpital Général, Dijon, France, Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol, September 2004.

Article: "Pulsatile Tinnitus: A Symptom of Chronic Subclavian Artery Occlusion," Marcio Francisco Lehmann, Charbel Mounayer, Goetz Benndorf, Michel Piotin, and Jacques Moret, AJNR Am J Neuroradiol 26:19601963, September 2005 (PDF).

Article: "Carotid Endarterectomy Relieves Pulsatile Tinnitus Associated with Severe Ipsilateral Carotid Stenosis," J Kirkby-Bott, H.H Gibbs, European Journal of Vascular & Endovascular Surgery, Volume 27, Issue 6, Pages 651-653, June 2004.

Article: "MR Angiography Imaging of Absence Vertebral Artery Causing of Pulsatile Tinnitus: A Case Report," *Mehmet Cudi Tuncer; **Yekta Helbest Akgül & *Özlen Karabulut,* Department of Anatomy, Faculty of Dicle University, 21280, Diyarbak¹r, Turkey.** Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Özel Diyarbakr Hospital, 21100, Diyarbakr, Turkey, International Journal of Morphology, v.28 n.2 Temuco Jun. 2010."

Article: "Endovascular Treatment of Sigmoid Sinus Aneurysm Presenting as Devastating Pulsatile Tinnitus. A Case Report and Review of Literature." Mehanna R, Shaltoni H. Morsi H, Mawad M., Interv Neuroradiol. 2010 Dec;16(4):451-4. Epub 2010 Dec 17.

"Pulsatile Tinnitus Caused by an Aneurysm of the Transverse-Sigmoid Sinus: A New Case Report and Review of Literature," Lenck S, Mosimann PJ, Labeyrie MA, Houdart E., Department of Neuroradiology, hôpital Lariboisière, 2, rue Ambroise-Paré, 75010 Paris, France, J Neuroradiol. 2012 Oct;39(4):276-9. doi: 10.1016/j.neurad.2012.02.001. Epub 2012 Sep 29. (NEW!)

Article: "Intractable Tinnitus and Sensorineural Deafness Cured by Surgical Correction of Coarctation of Aorta," S. Rathinam, A.M. Pettigrew, J.C.S. Pollack, Interactive Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery 3:431-433 (2004).

Article: "Pulsatile Tinnitus," Don McFerran FRCS Consultant Otolaryngologist Essex County Hospital, Colchester, British Tinnitus Association, October 2007.

Article: "Pulsatile Tinnitus and Dural Arteriovenous Malformation (Dural AVM)," G. A. J. Morrison, The Journal of Laryngology & Otology (1989), 103:1073-1075 Cambridge University Press (ABSTRACT).

Article: "Medical Mystery: Giving Birth Didn't Ease a Woman's Dangerous Hypertenstion," Sandra G. Boodman, The Washington Post, October 17, 2011.

Article: "That Noise Wasn't Just Tinnitus," Sandra G. Boodman, Special to The Washington Post, July 7, 2009

Article: "What's That Noise In Her?" H. Lee Kagan, Discovery Magazine, January 2006. (About a patient with arteriovenous malformation (AVM) and her doctor whose patience and persistence paid off).

Article: "The 'Rare' Disease That Isn't," Thomas M. Burton, The Wall Street Journal, June 27, 2009

Article: "Diseases and Conditions/ Fibromuscular Dysplasia (FMD)," Cleveland Clinic. Lists symptoms, details, treatments, and resources including Whooshers.com.

Article: Unraveling Pulsatile Tinnitus in FMD: A Report of the United States Registry For Fibromuscular Dysplasia."

Video: "A Rare Disease That May Be Underdiagnosed," Thomas M. Burton, June 26, 2009 (Hear an example of a whooshing sound in this short video)

Whooshers.com Pulsatile Tinnitus Sounds (Real Ones Recorded by Real Whooshers!)

Audio: Having trouble describing the sound you hear to others? Listen to this collection of sounds that whoosh and see if you can find a match to yours! Demonstrations: Heart Sounds & Murmurs, from the University of Washington Department of Medicine

Whooshers.com Review: SleepPhones- Soft, comfortable headphones to help mask the whoosh for a good night's sleep.

Replace "ringing" with "whooshing," and here it is: our theme song.