Learning for life
20th June 2017
Get to know your UK Team – Helen Wiggins
20th June 2017

Tell us your story… and win a True Wireless™ device!

Here at Cochlear Family we love to hear about your hearing journeys – each one is unique and since the Winter 2016/2017 Issue we have been running a regular prize draw to win a True Wireless Device.

All you have to do is to tell us how your cochlear implant has changed your life in either school, work or home and not only could you win a wireless device you will also have your story published in the Autumn 2017 Issue of Cochlear Family News.

It can be in any format you like, a poem, photograph, drawing, video, article – it’s your choice. Just send us your story using the form on the right.

 



I have had Bilateral Ménière’s disease for 25 years, and my hearing, in both ears, has progressively deteriorated to the point that I became very deaf. Two hearing aids helped, but my left ear was of little use, even with the hearing aid. My right ear was my better ear, but when my hearing would drop, giving a greater degree of distortion, I struggled to understand speech. My hearing fluctuation was very stressful, particularly if a social event was forthcoming. During a 12 month check-up appointment, in May 2014, I was told what I already knew, that my hearing was very poor, and my left ear was of no use to anyone. It was suggested that I would be put forward for cochlea implant assessment. The test results were positive, I qualified for a Cochlea implant, and was further pleased that my left ear was deemed suitable. Had I not bothered stimulating it by wearing a hearing aid, this may not have been the case.
In October 2014 I had the implant surgery, and in November I was fitted with a Cochlear Nucleus 6 processor. From switch on, the world was now a very noisy place. It has been over two years since I was implanted and the result is truly life changing! I get by in nearly all situations without lip reading, I can use a phone, and take part in social events even in noisy surroundings. Gone are the days of whistling hearing aids, fluctuating hearing, and the stress they bring. In the early days, following implantation, I had to keep asking what various noises were. I had forgotten about noises such as extractor fans, fridges, washing machines etc that I was now hearing even from a distance. Things sound natural to me, there is no mechanical Dalek speech, I do not feel deaf anymore.
Such is the impact on my quality of life that I still do not take my hearing for granted. In my opinion, Menieres patients should be considered for implantation with lower hearing losses, given their fluctuating hearing and the fact their hearing loss will progress. I will soon be going to Addenbrookes, the Emmeline centre, for my 12 months review. It will be interesting to see if any settings will be changed. At the moment I am overjoyed with the gift of hearing I have been given, safe in the knowledge I will always have one good ear that Menieres can not deteriorate, or affect, neither will just getting older take its toll.

John

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