AN EMOTIONAL JOURNEY TO BILATERAL IMPLANTS | PART VII

 

So far Kate has put in a lot of effort and has gradually been improving her hearing. It could sound better, but it’s improving!

Can’t wait to hear what changes there are in week 5…

asgeir
Asgeir Concert

How am I going 5 weeks post implant?

Well… I am really, really happy with my decision to go bilateral. It was a scary decision, and it was hard in the first few weeks, but it’s been worth it.

I am getting stereo surround sound now. I am noticing when I listen to music through the Wireless Mini Mic 2+ that I am hearing instruments on the new ear, that I could not hear in the old ear. It’s awesome.

Music sounds really good, and bass sounds awesome. That was something I was so worried about, losing my bass. Some tunes are a little tinny, and some of my old favourites sound a little out of tune. That’s not so great. I know that I will get used to it, so I am not worried. It’s like a recalibration of sound. Classical music I used to absolutely hate when I lost my hearing (sounded like sheep getting the baa’s squeezed out of them), but now it sounds wonderful again. Hip hop sounds pretty awesome too.

To celebrate my new ear, my colleague took me along to see an Icelandic band playing at the Enmore Theatre in Sydney – Asgeir. I hadn’t heard them play before, but I jump at the chance to hear new music, so we went last Friday night. It was great! I was testing out all the different combinations with my ears – one on, one off, both together, different programs. I found that the Scan setting was really good for picking up all the sounds, but not being too overpowering.

One thing I noticed was I could hear people speaking really well in the noisy pub environment – better than I remember!

And the music was wonderful – I could hear much more of the instruments, and some of the lyrics – though I still couldn’t get all of it. I enjoyed it though, and I think that’s all that matters really.

nat-kate-ben-asgeir
My Colleagues and I at the Asgeir Concert

How was the second Cochlear™ implant after 4 weeks?

On Tuesday 11 June 2017, I had my week 4 mapping session, where my new Cochlear implant was adjusted again.

The results were good. I went from having difficulty understanding sentences to hearing a lot better. It’s amazing that each week there are changes.

We did a speech perception test, and a word perception test.

Now, let me explain what these are for those who are not familiar. A speech perception test is where you sit in front of a speaker, and listen to basic sentences read out. You can’t lip-read, but you can get the context of the subject. A word perception test, however, shows exactly what you are hearing because they are single words, with no chance of guessing the subject.

Want to know my test results 4 weeks post switch on????

Sentences – I got 98 per cent of the sentences correct! To put this into perspective, with my hearing aid I was only hearing about 17 per cent of sentences correctly. Word perception test was 30%, compared to 4% with the hearing aid! Wow…. And here I was worried that I might not understand speech at all.

98 per cent of sentences correct in quiet! Wowsers.

testing-in-booth-
Excited for my Speech Perception Test!

But do you know what the most incredible change is?

I feel less tired.

That’s been the most interesting aspect of getting the 2nd Cochlear implant. Such a seemingly tiny thing, but my energy levels are much higher. You can’t put a price on that when you have two small children, you’re working and trying to stay connected with family and friends.

And every day that I listen with my new ear, I am reminded that this is what these devices are all about: Relationships. Kinship. Bonds. Interaction. Connection.

 

Views expressed by Cochlear recipients and hearing health providers are those of the individual. Please seek advice from your medical practitioner or health professional about treatments for hearing loss. They will be able to advice on a suitable solution for the hearing loss condition. Outcomes and results may vary. All products should be used only as directed by your medical practitioner or health professional. Not all products are available in all countries. Please contact your local Cochlear representative.

Cochlear, Hear now. And always and elliptical logo are either trademarks or registered trademarks of Cochlear Limited. D1255107 ISS3 AUG17 Cochlear © 2017 All rights reserved.

 

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