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Is a Cochlear Implant Appropriate for a Highly Active Kiddo???

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New here and looking for some input from other parents! 

My daughter is 4.5 yrs and was diagnosed with profound unilateral sensorineural hearing loss in the last year but has clearly been suffering from loss for longer. Her other ear is unaffected at this time but we have been told this could change as she ages. We are very closely leaning towards getting a cochlear implant however I am concerned about making this decision for her without taking everything into account and then having her resent that choice. 

I am particularly worried about her ability to comply with the restrictions around activity, especially in the time immediately post-op, but even extending to regular restrictions with contact sports. This is a kid who just WILL NOT sit still. She is excessively physical and utterly fearless with every interaction with the world and other people; in fact, we had planned to put her in martial arts before all this to help her learn better boundaries for herself and others. She has siblings and they regularly wrestle/tumble/etc so removing her from the situation is not much of an option, at least not for more than a few days.

She is also extremely sensitive to sound and environmental changes. Since she still has normal hearing in one ear, I am worried about causing a long-term problem (like tinnitus) in a situation where intervention isn't absolutely necessary. While I think the potential benefits of gaining bilateral hearing would be incredible and the earlier the intervention occurs, the better, is this process even going to be possible?

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Welcome to HearPeers.  It’s great that you are considering all possibilities for your daughter’s single sided deafness.

There are various ways of securing CI processors in place for young, active children.  Med-El has several wearing options and you will find lots of other creative options online in Etsy shops- many designed by parents of young CI users.

Wishing your daughter the best.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thank you for the suggestions Mary Beth. I will look into those. We are hoping that an implant will help her with sensory issues long-term, but I can't help but think it's probably going to be a VEEEERY long summer of recovery and post-surgical restrictions. 

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