I had PERFECT hearing in both ears prior to surgery. My sister used to call me Jamie Somers (the Bionic Woman) because she claimed I heard everything.
During my hearing test, when I was in the little soundproof booth with headphones on, I asked the technician what that ringing sound was. She said it was her cell phone, in her purse, on the far side of her office. She said, "I guess you don't have hearing loss."
Now, I'm completely deaf in the left ear, and the tinnitus is sometimes overwhelming. Especially in loud, busy places. And I'm bothered by all kinds of sounds, like traffic, fans, refrigeration units in supermarkets, lights buzzing, clocks ticking, household appliances humming. As many of you have noted, parties and restaurants are often unbearable, too. And high ceilings seem to make the sounds ricochet.
And the tinnitus......................Can't wait to get into a quiet room which, oddly enough, lessens the tinnitus.