New ears
Thursday May 27th 2021, 11:08 pm
Filed under: Life

I got the new hearing aids yesterday.

I opened the door today and a siren went by, closer than the road even comes as far as I could tell and I asked where was that?! Thinking it was coming right next door.

Oh, over on X road I’m sure, was the answer.

That was two streets away. No way. But then it turned a corner and faded and clearly she was right. Huh. You mean sirens can actually sound like sirens again?

Some sounds are too bright but the brain has already adjusted somewhat.

One of the sources of improvement, though by no means the main one, was better-fitting ear molds–but I warned the audiologist beforehand that a previous new set had had to be whittled down because with my connective tissue disease, being tight against it meant it bled. And if it’s not tight, you don’t hear as well. I knew the tradeoff all too well.

So the new ones went in. She programmed them as I sat there, then had us talking for me to figure out how these were working, and did one more test where she took them out and put them back in with a wire alongside them all the way into the ear canals to test how they were actually carrying the sound.

While I was thinking, one more bit of space taken up. I can’t…

They came back out again so she could be done with the wires and I had her look at the left ear. It was already red.

So the upshot is, I do hear better with the new aids. Mostly. There is still brightness that drowns other frequencies out but that already seems to be calming down in my brain: I’ve had recruitment before and I know it goes away and it’s a sign of where the old aids were failing and not conveying sound. The brain overreacts to sounds it hasn’t heard in awhile but you just keep going till it doesn’t. Just like a new eyeglass prescription may be the correct one for your eyes but man it feels weird for the first hour and day.

She said that these molds do conform and shrink just a tiny bit with the wearing.

I’ve found I have to put them in and not touch them for anything because the slightest movement against them sets off that inflammation. Which I did today. Then I was wearing them not quite all the way in, which didn’t work. I gave up and put the old smaller-mold ones in to give my ears some time to calm down because I really want the new ones to work at their very best.

The sound is comfortable on the old ones. The fit is, too.

The difference is, now I know what I could be hearing and wasn’t with them.

I just have to work my way through that adjustment period. Carefully and bit by bit.

3 Comments so far
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I had the same sort of reaction after cataract surgery. I could see clearly, and kept peering outside going “wow that’s bright”!

I’m still not completely adjusted to bright sunlight, but that’s what sunglasses are for.

Comment by Anne 05.28.21 @ 12:09 am

So excited for you! I sure hope the adjustment period goes smoothly and quickly.
Hurray for new ears!

Comment by Chris+S+in+Canada 05.28.21 @ 7:24 am

I was having a problem with hearing aids, then glasses, then mask–forget earrings entirely. Now I am going to try the hearing aids and the glasses, with no mask and no earrings to see how I get along this week before going with my granddaughters and one little great granddaughter on a 3 days trip–driving and a short train ride,

Comment by Sharon Stanger 05.29.21 @ 1:24 pm

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