Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Julie's little helpers

I wear glasses. I take 10mg daily of Coversyl to keep my blood pressure down to about 140. I take 20mg of Zimstat daily to reduce my cholesterol from 8.5. I weigh 47 kgs. by the way! And now I have hearing aides. I had better save my pennies for that nice little Zimmer down in the pawn shop in O'Brien Street. One of the grant applications I am helping to cobble together at the moment is about the Drug Burden of the ageing population. Hah!

Forgot to mention: what you see in that little container set me back $4,400.

Here they be:

That would be the same aide from two angles, I suspect. Forgive me - the specs are in for replacement lenses!

I've had them now for 9 days - not that I am counting, mind. The biggest impact thus far is that they make me very tired. I was warned of this: that my brain would be working overtime trying to sort out the altered sounds and to adjust the volume. For the middle few days I had strife with cut-out: not the aide I suspect but the ear. Like coming down in a plane: that sort of effect. That has not happened yesterday or today. I mostly do not realise that I have them in. Loud sounds make me jump a mile.

The tinnitus and the balance have not altered at all: but that will take up to two months or longer if it is going to benefit at all. The folk at work contend that they cannot see that I have aides on, my hair covers them so well. They do reckon that I am a lot quieter: that was because I had to yell to hear myself before I suspect. Now it just sounds so so so strident.

At the cinema with Shirley the other day, I lent back onto the top of the seat instead of leaning forward straining with my right ear cocked. That was a relief. Now that I hear so much, it makes me realise just how much my hearing was impacted.


Z said...

Sounds positive, on the whole. I hope things continue to get better.

Dutchcloggie said...

I hope they help your tinnitus and balance soon. JD has tinnitus sometimes and it drives her crazy.
When I was little and in the middle of learning to speak, my ears were blocked all the time and, as I was half deaf during that important period, my default speaking volume was LOUD. Yes, I know, it still is frequently :-) But is interesting how that creeps in to day to day speech without you realising it.

I guess over the next few weeks you will learn to adjust them correctly for every situation. When you have, please explain the point of Induction hearing loops I see everywhere. I never know what that means!

Julie said...

If you have HAs that have an induction loop setting they have the capacity to pick up sound via magnetic fields which eliminates background noise. They also cost over $7K. Major performance spaces have invested in induction loop sound systems where the sound from the performance is transmitted through specially insulated wires usually along the skirting board or equivalent. The “deaf” person flicks the switch to T (telecoil) for the duration of the performance. If you want to hear the person next to you, you switch to M (microphone). So, induction-loop aides are good for concerts and the indoors only. When walking along the street you need to be able to hear all the environmental sounds, especially someone yakking at you!! Lesley’s husband Bill got a second HA a coupla weeks ago which was a loop aide which cost him $3800 whereas his other aide 3 years ago only cost $1900. I went to a Taikoz concert last night where I took the aides out because it was so loud my ears ached. I need them in plays to hear dialogue. I have the opera next weekend which will be interesting ...