Friday, March 23, 2007

Adjustment City

I went to the audie (audiologist) appointment Monday. Sorry. I meant to post this earlier.

I told her what I am hearing, what I am still adjusting to, what doesn’t work, what’s hurting. (The tips of my ears are a little raw. That never happened before.) It’s not bad, but enough. it could be the tubes are a little too short and it’s tugging on my ears or it’s a little heavier than my old hearing aids or because of the shape and how it fits around my ear or a combination of all of it.

She did something to help eliminate the feedback so it doesn’t whistle so much, especially in my bad ear. I would have it on just so that I know it’s on, but I really can’t get any speech out of it. I would have it on too loud and it would whistle.

It seems that my brain is still adjusting to the new hearing aids. I don’t remember how long it took for my brain to “retrain” itself to hear with my other hearing aids. It’s a different brand, too. And it’s has a lot more “oomph” (power) than my old ones.

Then again, I have experienced a big loss within the last six years.

Things are still tinny, metallic-like. I really miss the analogs. They are not making them anymore. I wanted to go back to analogs (my previous ones were digital, too, but I really missed the sound I got from it-the digitals make things sound more unnatural.) I did get accustomed to them, though. I was talked out of getting analogs because if I needed repairs, the parts would be hard to find. So I am stuck with digital hearing aids. (Digitals cost twice as much, if not more, than the analogs. Makes me wonder if someone just wants to line their pockets? How many people wear hearing aids? The elderly, the children born with hearing problems and grow up to be adults? Hmmm...) I had been using the Siemens brand for a long time. Now I am using the Oticon Sumo DMs. It is made for people with severe hearing loss.

Maybe it took a long time to adjust to my old pair, but I just didn’t pay much attention to how long it took to get used to them as I am now. I do remember how frustrating it was not to have the volume control and the fact that they were digitals. Even though my new ones are digitals, at least I have the volume control back.

I tried to use the phone with the T-coil switch, but it was harder to hear the speaker than it was just with the microphone switch (the switch that I use most.) I will keep trying. Maybe I just have to get used to it.

The kids’ voices still takes some getting used to. They just don’t sound the same. Time. I have to give it more time. And patience. Lots of it.

Maybe this hearing aid just picks up sounds differently than the other ones. After all, it is a different brand and it is stronger than the other ones.

There is a bonus, though. I just got these hearing aids on March 2 and it took 17 days for the hearing aid batteries to die. With my old ones, I was lucky if they lasted more than 10 days. I can’t complain about that. And when it died, it just went “poof.” It was so noticeable. With all my old hearing aids, it would slowly die off and then I would either say or think, “Oh, my battery’s dead.” Most of the time the battery would be running low and I would be taking them off for the night. By morning, the hearing aid battery would have a little bit of juice left in it so then it would slowly fizz out. This hearing aid went, “ding” then poof. Instant death of a battery. (Talk about going out with a bang!!) And it died enroute to the audiologist. How ironic is that? And I didn’t have a spare battery packet with me. I usually leave a pack in my purse…and in my locker…in the junk drawer...anywhere it's handy.

I do have two packs of batteries that came with the new hearing aids. I just haven’t started stocking up so I could have them strategically placed, close at hand for immediate replacement.

The audiologist replaced the batteries for me.




At Fri Mar 23, 02:07:00 PM , Blogger Michelle O'Neil said...

My sister-in-law has a hearing loss, has had it all her life. I never knew all she went through with her hearing aides?

Thanks for the education.

At Thu Apr 12, 05:38:00 PM , Blogger Jacqueline Lichtenberg said...


Thanks for this post. I was googling around looking for something that doesn't exist -- a database about hearing aid brands, reliability, performance as advertised -- what's the "best" aid made.

Even Consumer Reports doesn't compile this information, so I tried the blogs and presto, found this very informative post.

Jacqueline Lichtenberg


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