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JosephG

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About JosephG

  • Rank
    Newbie

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male

Profile Info

  • Search Profile
    User of a hearing implant
  • Implanted
    Yes
  • Implant Period
    Under 1 year
  • Implant Type
    Cochlear Implant
  • Hearing Loss Type
    Sensorineural
  • Cause of Hearing Loss
    Unknown / Prefer not to say
  • Pre/post lingual Hearing Loss
    Post lingual Hearing Loss
  • Sudden/Progressive Hearing Loss
    Sudden Hearing Loss
  • Uni/bilateral Implant
    Unilateral implant
  • Country
    United States

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  1. Just to add my 2 cents, I've been single-sided deaf (left ear) for as long as I can remember, so easily +35yrs (I may have been able to hear in that ear when I was younger, but I'm not entirely certain and the problem was first diagnosed in early elementary school). I recently had CI surgery in August 2019 and was activated Sept 1st, so I've now been using a CI in my left ear for about 6 months. In the beginning things were very difficult to understand. I heard "sound", but conversation was largely like 'morse code' to me and I couldn't much distinguish a constant noise like running water from an array of other sounds. But ... things have gradually improved... I can now hold my own using only my left (CI) ear in conversation and particularly anywhere that I have even modest visual cues (lips, facial expressions, context of some sort). The phone is still quite difficult in that ear and I wouldn't attempt to take a phone call in that ear by itself, but I do try to listen to podcasts and the like exclusively in that ear and things are getting better. I've been streaming Audible books (with the accompanying text) to my CI and I can hear the reader/speakers very clearly and find my place even if I lose the text by just listening to the words. And in general voices (of all kinds) no longer sound robotic or mechanical, I clearly hear language, accents, stylistic differences etc (sometimes I even learn how a word is pronounced by listening to it in that ear .. yeah, crazy, right?). So while it's not perfect by a long shot and I still need a lot of work on that ear, I see vast potential on the cusp. So to try to keep a long story short, in my opinion everyone has a slightly different experience with these devices, but I'd like to believe that if I can make the progress that I've made in my left ear after such an extensive period of dormancy (perhaps since birth?), that anyone with any degree of hearing loss over any period of time can benefit tremendously with the proper mindset and effort applied. It will take work, don't get me wrong, and it's very likely you will not understand a thing in the beginning (personally I'm still uncertain if it will ever be anywhere as good as my right "good" ear in terms of comprehension), but the fact that I now sometimes prefer that side in conversation is frankly amazing to me. So best of luck @Campnorthstar72!
  2. @Hicksy Thanks for sharing your initial experience! It's good to be able to connect with people who come from somewhat similar starting points, though of course, everyone's path will be a little different. Regarding "wearing an earplug in your 'good' ear", that actually is something my audiologist strongly recommended and as such I have been trying to rely almost exclusively on my left (CI) ear, plugging my right ear to the extent I can and/or wearing noise-canceling headphones on my right ear alone. But to be frank, doing so has been extremely difficult because everything sounds like morse code or just plain horrible (though I've been sticking it out). So in your opinion, do you think it truly helps to improve the acclimation process? @Mary Beth Thank you for all of the extremely helpful aural rehab links/materials, greatly appreciated. Your video was also fantastic and might I say, encouraging. I actually ended up going with the Nucleus 7 sound processor with Kanso (I know, I know, it's not Med-El, which was the alternative that I was leaning towards, but with the recent MRI approval (3T) of the N7 coupled with the direct iPhone/iOS connectivity features and a few other things, I ended up being sold on the former ... though of course the right ear is still open to change ). Just broadly speaking though, everything just sounds so similar right now, lots of pure noise/hums/pitter-patter; and words, even knowing what they are (particularly with similar syllable counts) are very difficult to distinguish from one another, if at all. So in short, it's very easy to be discouraged and question whether the device is even working properly. So knowing that none of our journey's is identical, I still do find it quite helpful to see that we're not quite alone and that others were able to overcome the seemingly insurmountable obstacles that confront the new user. That there might just be light at the end of the distant tunnel ...
  3. Hi all- First a few things about myself ... I've been single-sided deaf (left side) at least since early elementary school (I was not born that way as far as I know, but the precise etiology and dating of the degradation is unknown), so that's roughly 30yrs of very poor hearing on that side. However, my right side has carried me all these years and I'm a very high functioning professional in NYC. However, I recently had a sudden degradation of my hearing on the right side as well (sudden sensorineural hearing loss), but fortunately after several direct intratympanic steroid injections (NY Eye & Ear Infirmary) that ear has recovered sufficiently and functions fine with just a Lyric hearing aid. But after losing my entire ability to hear for a few weeks, I decided I needed to do something more proactive about my weaker left ear to ward off any future difficulties that I might encounter with my dominant right ear going forward. This led me down the path of a cochlear implant which I had surgery for on July 30th and was just recently activated for this past Friday (Aug 30th -- all work done at NYEE). I've been browsing through the various threads here and there's a lot of helpful info, so thanks to all who have contributed. However, there are a few questions that are a bit more specific to my experience that I was hoping somebody could help me with. I know it's been only 3 days, but I do not feel like I'm "hearing" very well out of my left ear implant ... or more to the point, the sounds I do hear are just rocking my brain, for lack of better words. I can hear speech, mainly syllables and/or the separation of words, but very little-to-none of it makes any sense at all, it all sounds like morse code. And some sounds that I would expect to be loud, like the streets or say the subway, aren't really very loud or noticeable at all, while others, particularly music, just rattles my brain nonstop (music I'd have to say is the worst). Also, I am clearly hearing high pitched noises, like keys rattling, as it makes me want to cringe, but at the same time (and this is going to sound odd) I don't feel like I'm really "hearing it" per se, it has more of a blank feeling to it. In the same vein, another item I've noticed has to do with "state changes". For example, if the water is running I can tell as soon it's turned on or when it turns off, but while it's on I probably couldn't say "oh, the water is running" or "the A/C is running". Similarly I can tell the difference between speech and music or say a tool being used, simply by the rhythmic nature of the sound patterns, but it is still just similar sounding 'noise' almost beating into my head. The one thing that does give me optimism though is that if stream a book directly to my processor via Audible, and I follow along with the related physical text, I can "hear" the words/sentences magically begin to form out of the text, I hear the book being read and can follow it (I've done this for 100 pages of a bio). It's a lot of focus though and very easy to lose my place and without the text I'd have no idea what the reader was saying, so I'm not sure what to truly think about this. So I guess my main question is, is this normal, particularly for someone who hasn't heard out of one ear for an extended period of time? Has somebody else with single-sided or double-sided deafness for an extended period of time experienced anything similar upon initial implantation that they could relay? Apologies that this message got a bit long. Many thanks, Joseph
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