Living with a Hearing impairment

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About this page

This page is designed to raise awareness of the plight that deaf people face every single day. I'll also be including tips that hearing people and professionals can follow just to make life easier for the deaf and hard of hearing people that they might meet as they go about their life.

A lot of what I put might seem a bit silly or "common sense" but, you'd be surprised at how many people forget these simple things and the size of the impact such things can have for your deaf/hearing impaired person.

As a deaf person myself, I regularly have to fight my way through the minefield of myths and rumors so I'll also be aiming to dispel some of those in this lens and hopefully make life easier for the deaf and hearing communities alike.

To add a little personality, I've alternated the sex of the child in some sections of this page.

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Table of Contents

  1. Please note:-
  2. I'm scared!!!
  3. I get my hearing aid(s) today, what should I expect???
  4. Induction Loop systems
  5. Lets see how many are
  6. Ok, I have my hearing aid(s), what next???
  7. Are there times when I shouldn't wear my hearing aid(s)???
  8. How to make my education easier
  9. Foreign object in the ear
  10. Some tips for making my general life easier
  11. Tips for those in a job that involves visiting deaf people at home
  12. Learning to sign
  13. American Sign Language
  14. Which is better???
  15. British Sign Language
  16. I still have my hearing and I don't want to lose it... what should I do???
  17. Mackaton
  18. Once I have my hearing aid(s) and they fit properly, when should I expect to have to go back to my hearing services centre?
  19. Help!!! I'm on holiday and I've run out of batteries!!!
  20. My hearing aid is broken!!!
  21. Children, the education system and a Hearing Impairment
  22. Bullying
  23. Keeping my child involved in his/her hearing loss and treatment
  24. Operation uncertainty
  25. Keeping hospital admissions fun for a child
  26. Am I still disabled if I wear hearing aid(s)???
  27. How many bleeps should I hear when I change the setting of my hearing aid(s)???
  28. Fact and Myth
  29. If I was to get you a gift that you could use, what sort of item would you like to recieve???
  30. Hearing aid insertion
  31. Portable loop system's versus fixed loop systems
  32. Questions I'd like answers to
  33. There are certain sounds I just can't get used to, is this normal???
  34. Dealing with wax build up in your ears
  35. Would grommets help an elderly person to hear better?
  36. How can I stop my hearing aid from whistling in my ear?
  37. Mainstream education versus special needs school education
  38. Sex and hearing aids
  39. If you already have some form of hearing loss, will it continue to worsen?
  40. Am I okay to wear my hearing aids at a disco or rock concert?
  41. Preparing for residential care
  42. This page is blessed!!!
  43. This page is among the stars!!!
  44. Links to other sites
  45. Is this page helpful???
  46. Join me on Squidoo
  47. Feedback/Recommendations box

Please note:-

I live in the UK and as such, most of my knowledge and opinions are based on the systems used in the UK although there are tips and information included on this page for all countries and nationalities.

I'm scared!!!

When you first get your referral letter for your hearing aid(s), it can be a bewildering time for you because there is nothing included with it just to let you know what to expect and quite often your hearing services center is in a different building – possibly one you have never even seen in your life – I know mine was. So I’m enclosing a few notes here just to lay your mind to rest a little.

On this first appointment, it should take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour and you can expect a hearing test where they pop the headphones on and get you to press the button whenever you hear a beep or whistle.

After that, they might give you a laminated card and get you to point at a certain picture while they play certain words at differing volumes.

Then, they might give you a big box that has three lights around the edges and ask you to press and hold the button for as long as you hear the sound. Personally, I found this a little annoying and silly – but younger children might enjoy doing it.

Remember, these are tests with no right or wrong answer since we are all unique and no 2 people will suffer the exact same hearing condition.

They will now take a mold of your ear(s) by pushing a little plug into your ear(s) and filling your ear with a dough-like substance that will set hard in a little while. If you are having two molds made, you might like having both done at the same time or you might prefer the audiologist to take the molds one at a time. Either is fine but be sure to ask that they do the mold taking the way that you like and don’t get fobbed off with the “We are busy” talk – the real reason they like to do both together is to save on the dough not because they are too busy to do your molds one at a time.

This is all they can do for you this visit, so they’ll ask you to make an appointment for 6 weeks time on your way out. While you are waiting for that appointment, they are busy making your mold(s)

I get my hearing aid(s) today, what should I expect???

Both types of hearing aid Behind The Ear (BTE) and In The Ear (ITE) This will vary from center to center and hearing aid(s) to hearing aid(s) but I’ll talk you through the process with a Behind The Ear (BTE) hearing aid.

If you get to see your ear mold before they put it into your ear, you’ll see that it has a long tube sticking out of it. They’ll then rest your hearing aid(s) behind your ear(s) and cut the tubing at a level where they feel you will be able to wear it comfortably. Don’t worry if it’s still a little long at this point – you can snip off any extra at home yourself. You won’t know at this point if your tube is slightly short – but you will find out in due course (more on this in a following module)!!!

They’ll then remove both parts of your hearing aid(s) and push the Behind The Ear part onto your tubing, Then they will insert it into your ear. If the hearing aid is switched on during this process, it will whistle until it is positioned correctly. Now you have your hearing aid in and turned on, everything might seem LOUD or quiet – both of these are perfectly normal responses and your aid can be adjusted to a level you are happy with.

To adjust your hearing aid(s), you can expect the audiologist to plug a wire into your hearing aid. The other end of the wire will be plugged into a laptop and s/he will press some keys. While they are pressing keys, it can be common to hear beeps, buzzes and feel like your hearing aid has switched off altogether. The audiologist will ask you if that is better and wait for your response before continuing.

After this process is complete, you can expect to be receiving a book or card for some batteries and your repairs. As this is your first hearing aid(s), you’ll be given 2 books of 6 batteries and you can expect to be asked to retain all the spent batteries and labels because you’ll need them to “trade-in” on new batteries.

You’ll now be free to leave and get used to your new hearing aid(s).

I would advise that you do not try to wear them all day at this point because it’s not uncommon to get soreness in the ear, ear ache, or headache. Start at just a few hours and work your way up from there.

Induction Loop systems

Induction Loop systems, often shortened to Loop Systems, are one thing that I talk about quite a lot on this page because they can go a long way towards lessening the effects of hearing loss in a deaf person's life.

In the early days, loop systems were worthless to deaf people who didn't have at least one hearing aid - but in recent years, huge strides have been made to make them more accessible to the entire deaf community as opposed to just those that had an hearing aid.

With that said, it is still very important to take the time to read product specifications whenever you are buying a loop system because there are still some systems out there that will only work in conjunction with a hearing aid. If you don't want to be restricted
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Lets see how many are

Are you deaf or hard of hearing???

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  • CraftyDaddy Nov 26, 2012 @ 5:38 pm
    Not deaf, and I do ok.. but I have severe tinnitus. Most of my day it is simply a constant ringing, but there are times when it gets to where it drowns out everything. I do not consider it to be a disability, however. There are so many who would do anything to be able to hear as well as I do, and so many who do better than I do, with much less.
  • Becksta Nov 26, 2012 @ 7:40 pm
    Although tinnitus in itself may not seem to you like a disability, it still has a debilitating effect on ones life... and sometimes our mental health, too. As a fellow sufferer, I've had days where I've fought to live my life from one minute to the next because of the effects that tinnitus has had on my life physically, mentally and emotionally.

    I'm sure that you'll understand what I mean when I say that some days, it's a trial just to carry on.
  • mrducksmrnot Nov 12, 2012 @ 10:13 pm
    Without my implants and aids I am deaf. With them I can hear the birds singing again, the water running, the rain hitting a tin roof and all the beautiful sounds most take for granted.
  • Ben Sep 22, 2012 @ 12:18 am
    I was born with hearing loss and I'm 14 now... it's been tough, but I can sleep whenever. The hardest part is social communication, I often get left out in class because I don't really speak up that much and always need people to repeat what they said. This was a nice article, by the way
  • Debra Ellis Aug 30, 2012 @ 12:12 pm
    I am hard of hearing but I refused the assistance of hearing aids or implants. Your story is amazing and you have my full greatfulness

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Ok, I have my hearing aid(s), what next???

Now that you have your hearing aid(s), be aware of any rubbing or soreness where the tubing comes up from the mold to the hearing aid. If you get this and the hearing aid isn’t sitting snugly on the back of the ear, you need to cut the tubing a little more. To do this, remove the tubing from the hearing aid and place it on the back of your ear (like you are wearing it), then measure the point where the hearing aid meets the tubing and cut there then re-assemble the hearing aid.

Be sure to soak your ear mold(s) in water (either hot or cold, but I don’t advise boiling water because boiling water may melt your tubing) that contains a little dish detergent over night, then before you put them in in the morning, wipe them down with a cloth and blow any water out of the tubing. If you have 2 hearing aids and suffer with ear infections, don’t soak both molds together or you might contaminate your other ear.

If your tubing comes out of your mold, you need to make an appointment with your hearing services center (the place where your hearing aid came from) because you either have the wrong size tubing in or your tubing needs to be glued into your mold. If you need a temporary fix though, you may be able to push the tubing back into your mold until it sits flush with the hole that it came out of. Don’t be tempted to push it in that little bit further “to try to get it to stay in place” though because it won’t. Don’t be tempted to try to glue it in place using super glue either. While super glue will see that it stays in place, it can create problems when it comes to replacing your tubing.

If you feel a soreness under the top part of your ear, you’ll also need to make an appointment with your Hearing Services Center because you need to have a little ground off the top of your mold – although you could do this yourself, I do not recommend it because the mold might be too rough afterwards or you could take too much off and end up having to pay for a new mold.

In other areas of your life with hearing aid(s), I’d advise you to make an appointment for a “Home Assessment” with Social Services because, even though you now have hearing aid(s), there are still items out there that can make your life easier still. For example, you might still struggle to hear the tv (with or without your hearing aid(s) in, a loop system would greatly improve this. You might want a flashing alarm clock and fire alarm as well – they can provide these.

Bear in mind though that there are a wide number of loop systems available on the market and although a portable loop system might be best for some people, they aren’t necessarily the best idea if you or a family member suffers from poor mobility. Also, make a point of telling the social worker if you use your hearing aid(s) a lot or you are an occasional user – there is no right or wrong in your decision but there are loop systems that allow you to use them both with and without your hearing aid(s) in.

Social Services no longer provide doorbells or telephones in some areas of the UK, if yours is one of those affected, you can buy them through Action on Hearing Loss (formerly the Royal National Institute for the Deaf [RNID])- which can be found here,

If you rent your property from a council/housing association or private landlord, request a second copy of your Home Assessment for your records, then send it to your landlord with a request that they are aware that you are registered as disabled – they should then accommodate your needs better in future. You can also request that your landlord doesn’t contact you by telephone because you prefer to be contacted by letter.

Are there times when I shouldn't wear my hearing aid(s)???

Usually, you'll be okay to wear your hearing aid(s) every day, but I'd advise you not to wear them if they are hurting you anywhere or you have an ear infection. If the problem persists, don't be afraid to get it checked out either at your doctor's surgery or your Hearing Services Center.

How to make my education easier

This post is mainly aimed at teachers, tutors etc. because it’s surprising just how many of these people are still largely unaccommodating of deaf students and can inadvertently affect their education in a negative way.

How can I make your time in my class easier?

Perhaps the simplest thing you can do could happen about 5 minutes before the first lesson. All you need to do is let me into the classroom 5 minutes before everyone else. I might speak aloud a little or rattle a few things about such as chairs or books This will allow me to test how echoy the room is and pick a seat to factor this in. After this, I’ll sit in the same seat every lesson, so if I’m late for my lesson one day, it’d be a HUGE help if you could keep this seat empty for me so that I can avoid disrupting your lesson when I arrive.

We offer a loop system, would that be any help to you?

A loop system is only of use to me in certain lessons and those are the lessons where only one person (the one wearing the mic) speaks because of the fact that it filters out all background noise and is therefore useless if you have a group discussion planned. So in order to answer that question, I’d need to know your lesson plan in advance. If you are going to be watching a video clip, consider that the only way I’ll hear it is if the mic is by the TV’s speaker’s – so if the TV trolley isn’t big enough or the speakers are in a different place, you might need some blu tack to temporarily position the mic on the speaker, and because blu tack can be hard to remove from the speaker case explains why I prefer to take your video or DVD home to play on my own computer where I have my own loop system wired up all the time

We are watching a video clip today, will you be okay with that?

Personally, I like to take notes of video clips for future reference and again, I have to cater for how echoy the room is versus the volume of the tv. This tends to put me at a huge disadvantage (even with the loop system) so I’ll usually ask to borrow the video afterwards because I have my own loop system at home which is set just right for me to hear what is said and I can take my notes at the same time.

Why do you prefer to sit out of group work?

This is something that I choose to do because in rooms where several people are taking part in a discussion (even when only one person speaks at a time) I still have unreliable hearing and will often resort back to lip reading at least part of the conversation. Perhaps the biggest challenge I face in group Q&A’s is locating the person who is speaking – quite often by the time that I’ve found them, they have stopped and someone else is speaking. I can’t tell you just how frustrating that is.

In an environment where several people are talking at once, there’s the issue I’ve mentioned above plus the fact that when a student is relying on hearing aid(s), the aids try to tune themselves in to the loudest noise and block out other sounds. That is the way that they work and not something we have any control over.

In a lot of ways, it can be like you trying to have a normal conversation at a football match.

Foreign object in the ear

Only try to remove a foreign object IF you can see it clearly. If you try and it goes further in. STOP and go to hospital. It's better to let them remove it than to damage either your hearing or that of your child.

Some tips for making my general life easier

I am deaf – or hard of hearing as the government over here like to call it. A lot of the time, I’ll say nothing about it unless I see the opportunity to make life a little easier for other members of the deaf community.

The reason for this is mainly because the response I tend to get is “I’m Sorry”. My response to this is why are you sorry? Sure, I’m deaf and it’s not nice but I’ve had a whole lifetime to adapt to my disability. Having people feel sorry for me as a result of my disability isn’t nice for me.

I’ve learned how to interact in ways where my hearing loss is seldom noticed, largely thanks to my ability to lip-read what people are saying to me although I’m unable to sign at this point in time.

One of the most annoying aspects of my hearing loss always has to be tinnitus (ringing/buzzing/whistling in the ears) since these attacks just seem to last longer and longer each time. The only thing that seems to ease this is to blast it out with music and one thing that can trigger tinnitus for me is when I have a hearing test and hear high pitched noises.

While I do like people to keep my disability in mind, I don’t like people making an example of me without my consent – but with that said, I don’t mind helping to educate others to the life I face everyday. So if you want me to speak about how my hearing loss affects me to other people, please ask me first rather than springing it on me during a lesson. Even if you have experience of deaf or hearing impaired people, please do not assume that you know everything because you don’t and never will know everything, no textbook or lecture on the planet can ever tell you everything that there is to know – even I am learning new things.

Now that I’ve been through a few bits and bobs, I’m going to go through a few Q&A that can actually make life easier on the deaf person.

I’ve noticed that you wear a hearing aid, should I SHOUT so you can hear me better?

A) Actually, shouting could be the worst thing you can do, especially at close range because I won’t hear you any better. If anything it will make matters worse since my hearing aids will either distort or try to turn themselves down rapidly so that when you talk normally, I’ll have to wait for them to turn up to the right volume again before I can hear you. It’s also helpful to remember that even though I might be wearing my hearing aids, I might still be lip reading you as well and shouting distorts the mouth thus making it harder to read.

If I have the older hearing aids, I might start to get a headache after you’ve been shouting for a while and that can lead to feelings of frustration for me.

What can I do to make your life easier when you aren’t wearing your hearing aid/s?

This is a question that will always vary from person to person but I find it a big help if you face me when you are talking and either cut gestures out or try to keep them to the minimum so that I can focus more on your lips and “see” what you are saying. You might need to speak a little louder than usual, but again, it’s important that you don’t shout at me

If I’m in a school setting, it can be a big help to me if I can go into the room a couple of minutes before the rest of the class and pick out the seat that would be best for me to sit in for my lessons.

Normally, I’ll only have to do this just once for the whole course and the reason I ask this is because I have to consider the acoustics of the room and balance that to coincide with if I can see the tutor should I need to lip read him/her, can I hear him/her during short bursts when I’m writing notes or I’m not wearing my hearing aid/s?

If I’m late for class for any reason, it’s a huge help if my chair is left empty for me because it’s less embarrassing than having to remove a fellow student when I arrive – I don’t like to be the center of attention.

Why have you taken your hearing aid/s out?

First of all, I’d just like to state that I haven’t removed my hearing aid(s) because I am bored by what you are saying, there are other underlying reasons behind me doing it.

There are a number of possible reasons for this and the most usual suspects for me are:-
1) Itching in the ear canal
2) Ear ache
3) Itching or soreness where the hearing aid(s) rests behind my ear
4) Flat battery
5) Ear infection
6) Background noise to high (shouting or group work)
7) Room is too echoy

Should I demand that you put your hearing aid back in?

As far as I’m concerned, demanding that I re-insert my hearing aid(s) is about the worst thing you can do because I’ll simply dig my heels in and do as I want. After all, you don’t know why I removed my aid(s) in the first place and if I’m in pain as a result of wearing my aids, is it really fair that I continue to suffer because you want me to wear my hearing aids?

I once had first hand experience of a teacher (who should have known better really) who used to stand right beside me and shout “RIGHT” (always just that one word). Looking back on it, it wouldn’t be as much of a problem had he been doing it now that I’m more used to wearing hearing aids but at that time, I was just getting used to the equivalent of trading in my human ears for those of a dog.

Many’s the time I took my hearing aid (I only wore one at that time) out and literally threw it across the table. He’d come over and tell me to put it back in, but I wouldn’t. At other times, I’d simply reach behind my ear and flick it off. Having long hair helped a lot at that time because he could never tell if I had it on or not.

Tips for those in a job that involves visiting deaf people at home

Follow all the advice in the Making my general life easier and add the following:-

1) Knock loudly but not so loud that it sounds like you are bashing the door in. I personally have a dog and if you make her bark, I know you are there.
2) If the deaf person has a sign saying “Press the bell”, press it and listen. Did you hear it ring inside? If not, Knock on the door. It’s possible that the batteries might have run out in the bell and the deaf person is unaware of this fact.
3) While you are carrying out any works – Don’t spend the whole time nattering away on the mobile then stand in the hallway asking “Are you there, mate?”. This just causes confusion as to whom you are talking to.
4) Take the time to ensure that the deaf person is looking at you when you are speaking – even if it means running through the same thing twice.

Learning to sign

American Sign language Sometimes, learning to sign can be a good thing. For further guidance on this, you can either ask at your Hearing Services Center or (for adults) check your local Adult Education Center.

If your child is deaf or hard of hearing, you could also ask at school to see if they offer sign language classes or are prepared to teach the student’s in your child’s class how to sign. Some school’s will while others won’t. If your school doesn’t and your family is learning to sign at home, then your child may be able to pass on their knowledge to their class mates in other ways. If one child each shows 5 other children how to sign, then it won’t be long before it spreads through the whole school. If you attend sign language courses during the summer holidays, it could be a great thing to include in the “What I did in the holidays” essay that all schools seem to request when school goes back.

Sign language or lip reading can both be good things for “Show and Tell” as well because your child isn’t physically taking anything into school so nothing can get lost but at the same time, they still have a project that they can show and tell the class about.

If just one person goes, they can teach the whole family and it won’t be long before you are all signing to each other!!!

American Sign Language

As I’ve been marketing my page, I’ve had people say to me that they didn’t realize that there were differences between American Sign Language (ASL) and British Sign Language (BSL) so I’ve added videos of each so that you can see for yourselves what the difference is. This is American Sign Language, the British Sign Language is a little further down the page.
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Which is better???

There is now a greater choice on where you can go to get NHS Hearing aids – you can either go to your local NHS Hearing aid center or the private center that some NHS Areas are offering.

I’m not about to be drawn in and say out right that one is better than the other because that’s not what this lens is about – instead, I aim to arm you with information to allow you to make a decision on your own.

1) When I attended my NHS Hearing Services Center, I found that the journey was a long one and there was no guarantees I would be able to make it into the Center on time because it was hard to find parking outside. Since I registered at the private clinic, this is a thing of the past.
2) When I went to the NHS Hearing Services Center, I felt that I was “just another number in the book” and they didn’t really have the time to sit and listen to me and my concerns. This is now a thing of the past.
3) When I attended my NHS Hearing services, I only had one hearing test in all the time that I was there (over 10 years). I’ve had one at my private clinic thus far.
4) When I Went to the NHS Hearing Services, I had a solid plastic mold which required several return trips to get the fit right. Now I have a soft mold. In one sense, I preferred the solid rubber ones for the simple reasons being:-
a) The solid ones are easier to remove and insert since they have the big hole in the mold
b) The tubing keeps coming out of the mold on the new ones which requires repeated appointments to resolve unless you want to have to keep repositioning it yourself every time you remove or insert your hearing aid(s)
c) Ear infections were a less common occurrence with the solid molds.
At the same time, the flexible molds are better because:-
a) You get a comfier fit – They don’t hurt if you fall asleep wearing them.
5) The NHS Hearing Services Center is better because they have the loop system wired into the TV in the waiting room.
6) The NHS Hearing Services Center is better because you don’t have the children screaming, crying etc.

British Sign Language

Here’s the British Sign language.
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I still have my hearing and I don't want to lose it... what should I do???

A lot of this section will seem old-fashioned but it dies work.

Tip 1:- Look after your ears:- They won’t thank you for going to that disco last Saturday night. As well as the possibility of ending up deaf, you might also end up with tinnitus, which is a ringing, buzzing and/or whistling noise in the ear(s) – it’s also untreatable – although you can buy relievers, your tinnitus will always return.

Tip 2:- Never insert anything smaller than your elbow into your ear – Including cotton buds. Remember, your ears are self cleaning so you don’t actually need to delve into them although you might need to clean around the edges occasionally.

Tip 3:- IF you have bobbins or grommets in your ears, NEVER go swimming or submerge your ears in water whilst the grommet or bobbin is still in. I know it’s a pain but if it makes the grommet or bobbin stay in for longer then it’s worth it.

Mackaton

Mackaton is another variation of sign language that is used here in Britain – I’ve included it here simply because there are differences in the lettering between British Sign language and Mackaton.
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Once I have my hearing aid(s) and they fit properly, when should I expect to have to go back to my hearing services centre?

The simple answer to this is never!!!

Once you have your hearing aid(s) and they fit correctly, you don’t need to go back to your Hearing services Center unless your hearing aid is broken or your hearing has improved or worsened.

If you live nearby your hearing services center, you might find it easiest to simply pop in with your book or card to obtain replacement batteries, otherwise you can simply post your book and spent batteries to the address on the back of the book. Or you could ask your GP for a battery exchange point in the area where you live.

Help!!! I'm on holiday and I've run out of batteries!!!

As long as you are in the UK, you can pop to a chemist where you are with either the book of batteries you have or the spent battery in your hearing aid and purchase some to see you through your holiday. I know for a fact that Boots tend to be a good source of emergency hearing aid batteries. Just be sure to retain the spent battery from your hearing aid for your book at home – and don’t mix your emergency batteries with your NHS batteries because the NHS ones are rechargeable and the emergency ones tend not to be.

I also don’t advise using batteries from outside the UK in your NHS hearing aid(s) – some aren’t of the same quality as the ones in the UK and can be prone to leaking which opens up a whole new can of worms.

If you live a good way away from your hearing services center, it’s also worth looking into if there’s anywhere nearer to you that will replenish your spent batteries… now, a lot of the time, your hearing services center doesn’t like divulging this information – so don’t be afraid to ask your GP or even another deaf person from within your community where they go. You can always give them a call and ask if they’ll do yours as well so you have nothing to lose.

If you move to a new home, make a point of checking in with a doctor – although you might be in the same area as your old home, the system might have been altered since you were signed up.

My hearing aid is broken!!!

Sometimes, hearing aids seem to break, although they aren’t actually broken.

The new, digital hearing aids can seem like they are broken when they have moisture in the tube between the mold and the hearing aid itself so, take out the affected hearing aid, separate the 2 parts and either blow down the flexible tube or use your puffer on it (if you have one). When you no longer see any condensation in the tubing, re-insert your hearing aid and see if it works any better now.

The simplest and silliest suggestion I have is to check your settings, especially if you have a loop system at home – you may have your hearing aid set to “T” or the volume set too low – I’ve done that myself before now.

If yours ticks this box, first off, change your battery for a new one. Sometimes, they go flat with no warning (Bad battery). If the battery you remove from your hearing aid feels oily or greasy, gently clean out the battery compartment with a cotton wool bud, being careful not to leave any cotton wool inside the battery compartment.

Perhaps one of the most useful bits of information I’ve learned is if it sounds like your hearing aid isn’t working, yet you haven’t heard the “Low Battery” Beeps, take out the offending hearing aid and check the hole in the end of the mold, Is it blocked??? If so, blow on the end of the tubing and remove the blockage. Re-insert your hearing aid and try again.

If it still doesn’t work, remove it again and look at the hole again. You should see the end of tubing flush with the hole. If you have tubing sticking out of the hole, VERY GENTLY pull the end that connects to your hearing aid until it sits flush against the hole then reassemble your hearing aid and try again. If this solves your problem, you’ll have to make an appointment with your hearing services center because this problem will keep happening until the tubing is replaced and possibly glued into position.

If that doesn’t work and you still can’t see a ring of tubing flush against the hole in your ear mold, you need to gently push on the tubing that connects onto your hearing aid until you do. If you push too much through, follow the step above to get it just right. Re-insert your hearing aid and see if that worked.

If that doesn’t work and there’s a chance that your hearing aid might have got wet, perhaps you’ve been out in the rain or participated in sport recently?.
Simply remove your hearing aid and open the battery compartment and place it somewhere safe to dry a while.

If it still doesn’t work after trying the above, then you’ll need to go to your hearing services center with it

Children, the education system and a Hearing Impairment

In general, these three things tend not to go together very well but there are things that you can do to make them more compatible with each other. I’ll guide you through these as best as I can.

STEP 1:- As soon as you find out about a hearing impairment (or other disability), notify the school with as much information as you can provide and Request a Special Educational Needs Assessment. This will enable them to find out where your child is struggling and provide help in those lessons, even if it means withdrawing your child from the main bulk of the class and educating him either individually or in a smaller group.

STEP 2:- Ensure that your child’s teacher is aware of your child’s impairment and/or disability and how it may impact on her education. I know it seems silly but you’d be surprised at how a hearing impaired child can be labelled as “stupid” simply because she are seated right at the back of the class and can’t hear or see the teacher.

STEP 3:- Try to make all appointments outside of school hours. Of course, this is impossible at times and you have to remove your child from class sometimes. If that is the case, try to send a note into school in advance of any absences to attend appointments etc. and ensure that your child attends school for the other half a day (If the appointment is in the morning, he can go to school in the afternoon and vice versa) That should prevent the school from jotting down an appointment as “Unauthorized Absence” too many times and thus making life difficult for you.

STEP 4:- If you notice something about your child, raise it with the school. Sometimes schools can miss that Amber is struggling with Maths or Brian is being bullied or Colin is finding his work easy and boring. If matters don’t improve, Don’t be afraid to go into the school yourself and see what they are doing to help your daughter.

STEP 5:- If your child is struggling repeatedly in the same subject, you could set him extra homework in that subject by giving him tasks around the subject to do at home. Keep in touch with your child’s teacher though to be sure that you are teaching the same thing at home as they are teaching at school – it’s no good you teaching addition if they are teaching multiples, it’ll just confuse your child.

Step 6:- Ask your child’s Ears, Nose and Throat (ENT) specialist if your child’s problems might be caused by a cleft Palate – this is especially important if you child is a slow eater and you had problems bottle feeding them when they were a baby. More information on this can be found on my page about Lliving with a Cleft Palate

Bullying

Beware of the signs of bullying!!!

Bullying nowadays is just an “Umbrella term” since there are so many ways that children can bully each other and it would seem that the older the child gets, the more sinister and easier to hide the bullying gets. Some of the information I’ve included in this section might seem hard to swallow, so to say, but don’t rule out any possibility of it just because you think that your child would come to you with this kind of issue. Trust me, THEY MIGHT NOT!!!.

Some examples of bullying are:-
Setting up a “I Hate Darren” blog/website/lens/group/cause/fan page
Sending Eric an abusive e-mail/text message/inbox
Posting that Faith is fat/ugly/stupid anywhere online
Abusive, sexualised name calling
Unwelcome looks and comments about someone’s appearance or attractiveness; either face to face or to others
Spreading rumors of a sexual nature
Inappropriate and uninvited touching
Inappropriate sexual innuendo and/or proposition
Graffiti with sexual content
Display/circulation of inappropriate material of a sexual nature
Badges or clothing depicting inappropriate sexual innuendo or language
In its most extreme form, sexual assault or rape

Please note that this list isn’t exhaustive and you’ll no doubt be able to think if examples not included here yourself

If you suspect your child of being bullied, watch out for these signs:-

bruises
broken or missing possessions
becoming withdrawn – not talking, or spending more time alone
changes in eating habits
changes in behavior – becoming aggressive at home
sleeping badly
complaining of headaches or stomach aches
wetting the bed
worrying about going to school
suddenly doing less well at school

But bear in mind that changes in the home environment can cause the same behavior as well. Perhaps you have a new addition to the family or are separated or getting a divorce?

Keeping my child involved in his/her hearing loss and treatment

I know that sometimes keeping your child involved in her hearing loss and/or treatment can be a real pain in the you know where but as a child who was very much involved in her treatment and hearing loss, I’m eternally grateful to my mum for taking that time to explain to me what was happening and what options were available to me in a way that I could understand at the time.

Not only did I decide for myself what to do treatment wise, I also have a greater knowledge of my particular type of hearing loss and the cause of it. So, I’d like to advise any parent going through this to keep their child involved at ALL stages, after all, it is a major part of his life you are deciding on here and she will have to live with the consequences of your decision forever regardless of whether or not the procedure or action works or not

Operation uncertainty

These are Grommets This is a real biggie for anyone facing an operation and not just someone facing the possibility of an operation on their ears.

As a child and teenager, I had several operations on my ears to have firstly Grommets and later Bobbins (Both are the same thing but grommets are made of plastic and bobbins are constructed from titanium) inserted into my ears. These were to later turn out to be unsuccessful operations and I’d later regret making the decision to keep trying the same operation but at the same time I had to try because each attempt was a possibility of a normal life for me. Now, my eardrums are too badly scarred to attempt this operation again so I’m wearing my hearing aids until alternative options come to light for me.

The reason I’ve divulged this information is simply because you might be reading this now, considering either the same or a similar procedure and I’d like to say to you, by all means go for it, but always try to leave room for another attempt when you are older – and this is especially true for children.

Keeping hospital admissions fun for a child

As any parent will know, a hospital admission is stressful at the best of times but it is worse if your son is stressed out about it as well. In this section, I’ve included some tips to hopefully reduce this and any issues that come up as a result of it.

Tip 1: Sometimes, when a booking is made for an operation, the hospital will send out a booklet explaining what life is like in hospital. Perhaps your child could read this? If she is too young to read it by themselves, then, maybe you could read it to her and run a discussion on it afterwards to give your child a chance to raise any concerns she has. If the hospital doesn’t send out a booklet on what to expect, you could pop down to your local library and borrow a book on operations from their children’s section and read that together.

Tip 2: Ask in advance if your child can have mum or dad (whoever he is closest to) stay with him – this is important if he is to be admitted to a ward over night because it can lower his anxiety levels.

Tip 3: Buy her new pajamas especially for the visit. They don’t have to be brand new, some from a charity/thrift shop will do.

Tip 4: Allow him to take his favorite teddy into hospital with him – sometimes something familiar from home can help your child to feel better about having the operation.

Tip 5: Some hospitals will do an “operation” on teddy while your daughter has hers. Perhaps she would like to have this done?

Tip 6: Try to keep your child’s routine as normal as possible but at the same time, don’t force it if he doesn’t feel up to it.

Am I still disabled if I wear hearing aid(s)???

The simple answer is yes.

Your hearing aid(s) simply mask your disability as opposed to removing it. If you were to remove your hearing aid(s) your disability will be back again.

How many bleeps should I hear when I change the setting of my hearing aid(s)???

Unfortunately, I cannot answer this question because it depends on the type of hearing aid you have and how it was set up for you.

For instance, an analogue aid is different to a digital and all the digital aids vary in what they can be set up to do. If you don’t know how your aid was set up, you need to contact your audiology department and ask them for a letter stating what each setting on your aid is for.

Fact and Myth

Yep, there could be a section like this for everything in life but if there’s one thing that really irks me, it’s the hearing impaired being told something that a hearing person heard from someone else who was told by their granny’s best friend’s dog who heard it from the cat next door.

My hearing aid(s) make my ear(s) stick out!!!

This is a big fat myth – sure, it can seem that way but for your hearing aids to make your ears stick out, they’d have to be a lot bigger than the space at the back of your ear which won’t be the case if your aid(s) is fitting correctly.

Hearing aids are for the elderly

This is another myth, stemming from the belief that only the elderly are affected by hearing loss. In all fairness, the bulk of hearing loss is bought on by age but with our lifestyles today it is affecting more and more young people – so wear ear plugs at the concert and turn that MP3 player down (it might be cool to have it loud but having your hearing in 10 years’ time is even cooler).

My hearing aid(s) give me earache and/or a headache

Sadly, earache and/or a headache can be quite common as you first get your hearing aid(s) and you go through the process of “Wearing it in”. Although your hearing aid is there to help you to deal with your hearing loss, the human body still sees it as a foreign object – which is why you’ll get symptoms such as a headache, earache or even runny ears. In this scenario, the best thing to do is to try to wear your hearing aid(s) little and often, trying to increase the amount of time that you wear them a little each time.

If you stop wearing your hearing aid(s) because of this, then your ear(s) will never get used to the hearing aid(s) and you will go back to the beginning again. You might also find that stopping wearing your hearing aid(s) after completing this “Wearing in” process might mean that you will get a headache, earache or runny ear(s) when you come to wear them again so you’ll need to go back to “Wearing them in” a little again.

Hearing aids get bigger as your hearing deteriorates

Regardless of what hearing loss you have, your hearing aids will always remain the same size – however, you might find that you need to visit your hearing services center to have your hearing aids turned up to enable you to continue to hear well or even get your hearing aids replaced should they not be working as well for you as they used to.

If a person becomes deaf at a young age, might they get their hearing back?

This question is impossible to answer without knowing precisely which kind of hearing loss you have, how it was sustained and various other lifestyle factors that could either make your chances of recovering your hearing better or worse. It is possible for a young person who has had perfect hearing to damage their hearing through subjecting their ears to loud noise such as loud music to regain their hearing again with time.

My hearing will get worse if I do not wear my hearing aids

This is another myth. Although hearing aids make it easier for you to hear the world around you, they don’t directly affect your chances of gaining any improvement of you hearing (unlike glasses). Furthermore, personally, I haven’t worn my hearing aids for about a year now and I haven’t noticed any difference in my hearing now to what it was years ago when I used to wear my hearing aids all the time.

If I was to get you a gift that you could use, what sort of item would you like to recieve???

As far as getting me a gift that I could use to better manage my hearing impairment goes, there are lots of different routes you could go down to achieve this and not one of them would be a wrong choice to make but with that said though, it's worth considering that some deaf people might also have unrelated conditions such as epilepsy, which could render the likes of a flashing doorbell or alarm clock more of a hindrance to them rather than a help - so if you are able try to talk to a family member or the hearing impaired person's close family or even their carer, if this isn't possible, try to go for one where you can turn the flasher off if you want to.

Alternatively, you could give flashing things a miss altogether and buy a gift to enable your hearing impaired person to take better care of their hearing aid(s). This can only be a good thing if they suffer a lot from ear infections like I do.

Hearing aid insertion

This lady runs through the insertion and removal of several different hearing aids so if yours isn’t the first one, do keep watching for others. If yours is still not shown, feel free to leave me a comment and I’ll try to see if I can find it for you.
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Portable loop system's versus fixed loop systems

As far as functionality goes, I personally haven’t had any mechanical issues with either type of loop system… but with that said, I have gained a preference for the fixed loop system over the portable one simply because I found physically looking after a portable loop system to be physically draining. I wasn’t able to leave it anywhere at all without something happening to it even though everyone knew what it was and that if they saw it anywhere, then that meant I’d be back.

I made the mistake of leaving it on a table one lunchtime while I nipped out to get myself a sandwich for lunch… when I returned it was on the floor by the wall, yet there was no way it could have fallen there on it’s own because the space it covered was far too great and it’d have taken a lot of other stuff with it had it slid across the table. I always have maintained that it was thrown off the table and against the wall but without proof, there was nothing that could be done.

For that reason alone, I’d advise anyone with a portable loop system to never take it into work unless it can be safely locked away when it’s not in use.

Another set of downsides I found with the portable loop system is that they always seem to be a tripping hazard, regardless of any visual impairment or not – that’s why I personally prefer the fixed loop system and I’d advise anyone thinking of getting a loop system to go for a fixed one over a portable one any day. The benefits you used to get from having a portable loop system have more or less been washed out now anyway with a lot of businesses becoming deaf aware, the number of loop systems in the workplace have sky-rocketed and as a result of that, there are very few businesses in our high street who don’t have a loop system of some sort.

Questions I'd like answers to

Have you ever had a question you'd like to ask a deaf person but didn't bother because you thought it'd sound rude or inappropriate? Well, now's your chance to ask them and I'll try my best to answer them.

Please don't post feedback on my lens here, I have a box a little lower down the page for feedback, Thank you
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  • mountainmist Mar 01, 2014 @ 10:48 am
    Wonderful lens! A dear aunt of mine wore them and this lens brought me to a new level of understanding.
  • Becksta Mar 01, 2014 @ 11:09 am
    I'm pleased that this was of some help to you
  • Arachnea Mar 01, 2014 @ 10:04 am
    Though I'm not totally deaf, I have a hearing impairment which is the result of military service. I worked on certain systems on aircraft. The nature of the difficulty is that it has worsened over time. I tried a type of hearing aid which not only increased my ability to hear tremendously, the dual use of the devices negated the relentless nature of tinnitus. Excellent lens.
  • Becksta Mar 01, 2014 @ 11:08 am
    Strangely enough, I've found that the white noise that is part of the background noise of hearing aids does help to relieve tinnitus to a point... although the results aren't perfect.
  • tonyleather Mar 01, 2014 @ 9:41 am
    I recently got fitted with hearing aids, and the difference it has made is astounding. I had no idea I had a problem, until my wife gave me a gentle nudge, but I am really glad that she did. Great lens!

See all comments

There are certain sounds I just can't get used to, is this normal???

Sometimes, there can be noises that you just can’t get used to, perfect examples of these would be chalk down a chalkboard, car engines running or even air brakes on long vehicles.

This can be common and you might find that you’ll get used to some with repeated exposure whereas others, such as the car engine one might require a change of car before you finally become comfortable with it. It took me 4 changes of car to find a car that didn’t seem to get on my nerves with the high level of noise. A simpler solution to this problem would be to simply turn off your hearing aid(s) whenever you know that the offending noise is going to be prolonged then turn them back on again afterwards.

If you are in an environment where you really need to hear, remove one or both your hearing aid(s) and revert back to sign language or lip reading if possible.

Image credit:- MondoPhoto

Dealing with wax build up in your ears

Wax build up can be a real inconvenience when you already have a degree of hearing loss.

There are 2 ways that you can deal with this. one is to pay for ear drops to put in your ear(s) and hope that this works and the other option is to put a few drops of olive oil in the affected ear(s).

Both these methods should work but you might find that the olive oil option is cheaper and is just as recommended by hearing specialists as the ear drops option. All you need to do is warm the bottle of olive oil in a bowl of warm water until it is warm but not hot, add a few drops to the ear while lying down then remain laid down for as long as you can to allow the olive oil to wash round the wax and hopefully bring you some relief from the ear ache.

Would grommets help an elderly person to hear better?

Generally speaking, I’d say that no, grommets wouldn’t help an elderly person to hear better. This is simply because (now I’m no doctor here) the only condition I’ve known grommets to ease is Glue ear and most of our elderly population tend to suffer from Age Related Hearing Loss – which is untreatable at this point in time, simply because we just don’t know enough about it.

If the elderly person wanted to, s/he could wear hearing aid(s) which have come a long way in recent years and don’t mean that you now have to hold a funnel to tour ear to amplify sound or get chafed by a black box that some older hearing aids used to use. If the elderly person doesn’t want to wear hearing aid(s), there are still some aids that you can get for them to make life easier

Grommets aren’t a cure in their own right.

Grommets are basically a drain for those who have fluid surrounding the bones in your middle ear, which is just behind your ear drum. Because you have fluid in an area that shouldn’t have fluid, the grommets basically ease the symptom which thus enables you to hear better for a while

How can I stop my hearing aid from whistling in my ear?

There are a number of reasons why your hearing aid is behaving in this way, some reasons you can remedy yourself at home while others will require treatment from your hearing aid center. I’m going to look into some possible reasons here.

Check how you have inserted your hearing aid If your tubing is kinked or twisted, you can expect to hear some whistling
Is there anything metal close to the hearing aid Sometimes, things like buckles and decorations from caps and hats can cause whistling as well as shorten the battery life of your hearing aid – one thing that I have found is that glasses don’t tend to have any effect on hearing aids or hearing aids whistling if they are sitting on your face properly. If you wear glasses and a hearing aid(s), the legs of the glasses should rest between your head and the hearing aid as opposed to between your hearing aid and ear.

Mainstream education versus special needs school education

Deciding which type of school to send your child to can be tricky at the best of times – but it is harder still when your child is deaf or hard of hearing.

A deaf child can do well in either type of school as long as s/he has the right support system in place right from the start. I know this because I was educated in a mainstream school.

If you are thinking of educating your deaf child in a mainstream school, there are a few points that you might like to address with the school before you enroll your child. These include:-

How do you get a Special Educational Needs (SEN) Assessment? You want to get this in place as soon after enrollment as possible.

What are the options for parent/teacher interaction?As a parent of a deaf child, you might find that the annual parent’s evening isn’t frequent enough for you to deal with any issues that you have with your child’s education and you might prefer 2 or 3 evenings a year where you can meet with your child’s teacher to address any issues that you have with your child’s education.

Sex and hearing aids

Should I wear my hearing aids or not whilst having sex?

The whole concept of wearing hearing aids or not whilst having sex is still something of a taboo because it seems to be the last thing you remember to ask the audiologist when you have an appointment – and even if you think about it, you think that you’d feel a right wally to actually blurt the question out.

The answer is that you should do whichever feels comfiest for yourself and your partner. Some people prefer to leave their hearing aids in so that they can hear better, while others prefer to remove them for the sake of comfort.

However, if you do choose to leave your hearing aids in, it’s not uncommon to experience buzzing, whistling or even a beeping noise, that could put a dampener on things for you.

Please note:- If you experience pain or bleeding in the ear, remove the hearing aid in the affected side and seek medical advice – although the mold isn’t long enough to damage your eardrum, it’s always best to get pain and/or bleeding checked out to be on the safe side

If you already have some form of hearing loss, will it continue to worsen?

Some forms of hearing loss may get worse as you age, without actually knowing the type of hearing loss that you suffer from, it’s impossible to answer one way or the other on how it will affect you.

It is worth noting that many of us will suffer hearing loss as we age.

If you have any sort of hearing loss and you are concerned about or have noticed that your hearing is worsening, it is worth you making an appointment to see your doctor because there are quite a few conditions that can lead to a hearing impairment or even deafness and only a qualified professional can diagnose exactly which type you have and then monitor it to deal with any deterioration or other problems that you may face in the future.

Am I okay to wear my hearing aids at a disco or rock concert?

A general rule of the thumb that I apply to my life is that if it doesn’t hurt my hearing or the hearing aids aren’t distorting, then it’s fine as long as:-

You aren’t sat too close to a speaker or the source of the music

Just like you’d wear ear defenders when around machinery, it’s just as important that you protect your hearing in this type of environment, too

Your hearing aid(s) aren’t set too high

This is going to be a noisy environment and you’ll need to set your hearing aid’s volume to factor this in as well as being sure that it’s loud enough to hear conversation. If you set it to a level where you can hear conversation but the music is still too loud then you’ll need to remove your hearing aid(s) to prevent yourself getting a headache and risking your remaining hearing.
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If you attend a lot of disco’s or concerts, you might want to ask your audiologist to provide you with a setting specifically for this purpose.

Preparing for residential care

No one likes to think that the day may come where they require care that can only be provided in a residential setting but when you are dealing with a deaf or hard of hearing person, there are factors beyond the usual things that we need to look into when chosing a residential home for our loved ones.
  • Are they used to hearing impaired residents? Since most of us suffer from varying degrees of Age Related Hearing Loss, I guess it's going to be very common for Residential settings to treat hearing impaired or deaf residents - but there are often vast differences between treating them and actually being used to them.

    Treating deaf and hearing impaired residents typically entails doing the bare minimum to ensure that their basic needs are met. This can mean confusion for the resident because no one takes the time to explain that "We need to do this and for us to do this, we have to take this step" in a way that the resident can understand and be sure that the resident understands before putting the plan into action.

    Being used to hearing impaired residents is a lot different to treating them because the staff should have some training into basic communication with the hearing impaired person - whether it be lip reading or signing. They'll be sure to explain things carefully and be sure they are understood before proceeding with the planned course of action.
  • What aids are provided for the hearing impaired Since many people suffer from age-related hearing loss, you'd think that many residential homes would factor this in and have staff trained to communicate with the deaf and hard of hearing residents and aids for their use would be commonplace.

    In reality, this is not always the case and what is offered varies widely from one home to the next so it is worthwhile checking what is available.

This page is blessed!!!

Although the SquidAngel program was retired in May 2012, I’ve kept this area in place as a reminder of the good times that I had as a SquidAngel here myself.

This page was blessed by Ladymermaid on 11/06/11

This page was blessed by BuckHawk on 27/08/11

This page was blessed by Timewarp on 10/11/11

This page is among the stars!!!

This page was awarded a purple star from rms on 30/08/11

Links to other sites

Action on Hearing Loss
This is a well known, long running UK charity - you might know it batter under it's old name of Royal National Institute for the Deaf (RNID) - it recently changed it's name and caught many of us by suprise!!! Granted, this site is UK based but it has a catalogue with a great selection of goods for all types of hearing loss and there's even a section where you can test your hearing from your computer
Signing Savvy
It seems that this site is a dictionary of signed words for both the US and the UK
Deafness Reasearch UK
A useful page that covers a variety of forms of hearing loss and how it can affect people

Is this page helpful???

I've tried to create a page here that is helpful and informative for both the deaf and hearing communities. I know that some of my information is a little bit repetitive at times, but that's simply because it fits into more than one situation so I've added it to those places.

Have you found this page to be helpful

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Yes, it's made me look at things in a different light!!!

Lucky50 says:

I'd like to say you got a good one here!

d-artist says:

Yes indeed! Too bad this younger generation listens to such loud music, it will affect them as they age.

RubyHRose says:

A lot of ear loss in my family at a time when we didn't know where to look for help. Your wonderful lens here answers so very much and will help us and many, many others, I will be sharing it with my friends!

grammieo says:

While I knew a lot already, you shed some light on things I didn't know. Good for me! and Good for the clients in our clinic.......

teesta-dasgupta-1 says:

loved it :)

No, it's pants!!!

 
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  • Joie Mar 20, 2014 @ 8:01 pm
    Hi, Becksta!

    Good job! Excellent lens!

    I'm a volunteer sign language interpreter in the US. I grew up with a hard of hearing dad and am living with a hard of hearing husband, who just got his first hearing aids. They do require a period of adjustment, but we were both amazed at how well they work. Dad tried hearing aids over 30 years ago, but they didn't do anything but add to his frustration. The technology has made tremendous strides since then!

    Thank you for the wealth of information you've put together for the deaf and hard of hearing in the UK. All the best to you! :)
  • esmonaco Mar 03, 2014 @ 12:18 pm
    Congratulations on you LOTD, very informative lens.
  • d-artist Mar 02, 2014 @ 11:46 am
    Congratulations on LOTD! Very interesting and informative lens...and what a journey you have had...Thank You for sharing this...it certainly will help someone dealing with this issue. I just had an intensive hearing test to try and diagnose my dizziness. I actually have exceptional hearing and smelling ability...my husband tells me I have a handicap in jest.
  • Merrci Mar 02, 2014 @ 10:00 am
    Such an excellent lens Beck. Congrats on well deserved LotD!!! Thanks for putting it together and providing so much information. So well done!
  • PaigSr Mar 02, 2014 @ 7:12 am
    Back in high school I learned how to sign the alphabet from a person I rode the bus with. she could hear but not speak. Thanks for having the alphabet on your page it has helped me remember those letters. Also I have a hearing issue. But its not from the loss of hearing. It is due to loud sounds. They will cause one of my ears to amplify and garble sounds. I will have to find a quiet place to get my hearing back to normal. Because of this at work I only use single sided head sets.
  • Radgrl Mar 02, 2014 @ 3:08 am
    Congrats on lens of the day! Great idea writing article from child's prospective. I just did a lens on chocolate. Chocolate-the-natural-remedy
    I've only been on this site about 2 weeks so traffic for me is slow
  • lazywrites Mar 01, 2014 @ 9:44 pm
    Thank you so much this lens, it's very informative.
  • rauspitz Mar 01, 2014 @ 8:22 pm
    This is an outstanding lens filled with a huge amount of pertinent information. Congratulations on getting a well earned LotD!
  • RubyHRose Mar 01, 2014 @ 8:19 pm
    Congratulations on LOTD and a Purple Star. This information sheds a new light on living with the Hearing Impaired that is extremely helpful. We often "forget" without meaning to that others around us may not hear as well as we do. Your humor and honesty about the whole matter, growing up with it, how you handled it. Inspiring!
  • Steve_Kaye Mar 01, 2014 @ 3:54 pm
    This wonderful lens should help many. Thank you for publishing it. And congratulations on receiving the LOTD.
  • StephenJParkin Mar 01, 2014 @ 3:19 pm
    Lots of useful information here and great tips too. Well done on the LOTD.
  • grammieo Mar 01, 2014 @ 3:06 pm
    Great lens and great information. Some of your information obviously relates to the UK, here in Canada, at least where I work, we encourage our clients to come in anytime they are having difficulties with their hearing aids. Some are elderly and cannot change the wax guards or the domes and istead of being frustrated, they come in, see me, and I do whatever needs doing and off they go again happy and hearing........maybe that's Canada, I don't know what it's like Stateside. I like to see our clients every 6 months, just for a good clean and check on their hearing aids. Preventative medicine!
    Congrats on LoTD! This was really well done.
  • Becksta Mar 02, 2014 @ 9:19 am
    Where I am here in the UK, I've been having problems since I changed to a private service in that I can't get my provider to see that their molds are giving me repeated ear infections (I used an old mold in one ear and their mold in the other - the one containing their mold became infected while the other didn't) - so I'm now no longer able to wear my hearing aids... though I am sticking to my guns on this.

    Sadly, we don't get 6 monthly visits - we wouldn't even get repairs if they could just mail the spares to us and be done with it.
  • Embeegee Mar 01, 2014 @ 2:38 pm
    Very informative. I have been profoundly deaf since I had measles as I child and it is not until recently that I have had compression aids that give me any real help.
  • shay_marie Mar 01, 2014 @ 1:56 pm
    I have a high frequency hearing loss and tinnitus; it was discovered 7th grade during a school screening. It has become part of my identity. I have hearing aids (that I don't wear as often as I should!) and I have a lot of problems with sharp consonants like "s" or "t". Places with a lot of background noise like bars and restaurants can be troublesome, and I kind of learned to read lips over the years. I can hear men better than women, and I'm thankful that my husband has a very deep voice; he's like a seeing I dog except I call him my "hearing ear husband." :)

    Thank you for this article and congrats on Lens of the Day!
  • Joie Mar 20, 2014 @ 8:10 pm
    Hi, shay_marie. :) Your hearing loss sounds just like my husband's: the tinnitus, the sharp consonants and high tones. He hadn't heard a bird sing or leaves whispering in the breeze for many, many years. He was diagnosed as being profoundly deaf in the high range, so-so in the mid range, and just fine in the low range. His brand new hearing aids have changed everything. He listens to those beautiful high sounds with pleasure, and he can diagnose problems under the hood of his car MUCH more easily!
    I hope you are able to get some help. I never thought this amount of improvement was possible. Take care!
  • partybuzz Mar 01, 2014 @ 1:56 pm
    This is great information. My husband recently got hearing aids and loves them. And, so do I! He says he can hear things he hasn't heard in years. They have taken some time for him to get used to, but it's so great that he has them.
  • ibidii Mar 01, 2014 @ 11:41 am
    My hearing impairment is understanding inflections in speech or accents from another dialect or language. I have trouble with consonants. I have been lip reading for 20 years. Of course this is difficult because I am legally blind as well. I have trouble with the phone as well. I had my last test 3 years ago. I will go again this year to see if my loss can be helped with an aid. I have used the assisted listening device when I was attending college. That really helped! My Dad had the same issue and one of my kids out of 4 has this same issue. They both lip read. Great lens Becksta! Congratulations on LOD! :)
  • canadazzz Mar 01, 2014 @ 9:55 am
    hello
  • RenaissanceWoman2010 Mar 01, 2014 @ 8:13 am
    Congrats on Lens of the Day! You really covered a lot of key subjects. I'm sure this will be helpful for many individuals and families. Wishing you all the best as you reach out to others.
  • BarbRad Dec 30, 2012 @ 7:19 pm
    I saw what a hardship it was for mom in her last couple of decades to be hearing impaired. Seemed her hearing aids were always needing new batteries or adjustments or having some other problem. This greatly affected her ability to interact intelligently with other people because she did not want to make inappropriate responses in conversations she couldn't hear accurately. This manifested itself most when she moved into a senior residence where both of us were hoping she'd make new friends. She promised to try it for 90 days, and during most of those 90 days, her hearing aids were causing enough problems that she was afraid to interact much with new people. I think publishing this lens will be very helpful to anyone facing hearing impairment for the first time or even after not finding suitable solutions to compensate for normal hearing.
  • Becksta Dec 30, 2012 @ 9:59 pm
    Sadly, hearing impairments can be very isolating for that very reason. I know I'm always miscommunicating simply because I misheard what someone has said.

    Whilst hearing aids are a good invention, they just aren't made to last longer than a few months at a time.

    Deaf residents in a retirement home can actually end up far more isolated than we like to allow ourselves to believe because a lot of these homes actually don't bother to train their staff how to communicate with deaf people simply because there is no law in place that requires them to be able to communicate with their residents.
  • mrducksmrnot Nov 12, 2012 @ 10:40 pm
    One of the best sites I have found for the hearing impaired and those who know someone hearing impaired. I will make sure my audiologist knows of this site for reference to others being treated for the first time along with their family and friends. Blessings to you for making folks aware of the many different things hearing loss brings about.
  • ikepius Oct 14, 2012 @ 3:47 am
    This is a very informative read. I have a friend with hearing loss and definitely will be sharing this with her. She communicates via signs and some of us find it difficult. Thank you!
  • Andrej977 Aug 20, 2012 @ 9:30 am
    Very informative lens. I will show this lens my grandfather!

    Thanks!
  • EnjoyLens Jun 04, 2012 @ 5:13 am
    Nice topic, great job!
  • wheresthekarma Feb 25, 2012 @ 11:14 am
    I live by Delavan Wi which has a school for the deaf and I worked in a group and took care of people who were blind and deaf, one of my down syndromes patient coudn't talk so I learned a little sign language to talk to him...His favorite was cheeseburger lol...
  • GaelicForge Feb 24, 2012 @ 2:56 pm
    I'm getting deafer and deafer all the time. Just gradually, though. Thanks for the info!
  • Mia-Mia Feb 21, 2012 @ 8:24 pm
    A great lens. Well done. Liked.
  • TenPoundTenor Feb 21, 2012 @ 11:54 am
    Great lens. My mother lost a great deal of her hearing because she was allergic to an antibiotic. Without her hearing aids she misses a lot.
  • perrybenard Feb 20, 2012 @ 2:49 pm
    Great lens very informative thank you
  • TransplantedSoul Feb 12, 2012 @ 9:35 am
    Thanks for putting this together. I puts many things in perspective.
  • pablina Feb 09, 2012 @ 11:11 am
    My brother who is 22, is deaf and we're currently attending appointments as he wants a cochlea implant.
    Very useful page. Have you considered putting Amazon products on here for U.K readers? I was about to click on your 'Sonic Boom Alarm Clock' item, but then realised it was to the American Amazon site. :)
  • Becksta Feb 09, 2012 @ 12:31 pm
    I'd love to add links for UK readers - but as far as I know the Amazon modules only work on the American Amazon.

    However, if you visit the "Action on Hearing loss" site above, they have a shop that offers pretty much the same stuff from the UK. It is the former Royal National Institute for the deaf and they have the same things but based in UK
  • ikepius Oct 14, 2012 @ 3:41 am
    This is a very informative read. I have a friend with hearing loss and definitely will be sharing this with her. She communicates via signs and some of us find it difficult. Thank you!
  • terrapin719 Aug 30, 2011 @ 3:35 pm
    Congrats on your shiny new purple star! well deserved :)
  • Becksta Aug 30, 2011 @ 3:40 pm
    Thank you
  • Joie Aug 30, 2011 @ 2:04 pm
    What a wonderful lens! Congratulations on your purple star! You deserve it!

    My husband is hard of hearing and loses more hearing all the time. My father was VERY hard of hearing my whole life. I have a slight hearing loss. On the other hand, my daughter, son-in-law, nephew, and I are all ASL interpreters. My father started learning to sign when he was 75 and used ASL for the rest of his life. My husband's ASL is progressing quite well, too. I've been signing for eight years now and can't imagine life without sign language. It has opened a whole new world to me, and a whole new group of friends in the deaf community.

    Thank you for this beautifully educational lens!!!
  • Becksta Aug 30, 2011 @ 2:18 pm
    Thank you, Joie. I'm glad that I was also able to teach you something you didn't know before. I was in two minds about including the section on Mackaton because it may have been confusing for my american readers but I decided to add it anyway because it was also educational :)
  • BuckHawk Aug 27, 2011 @ 5:19 pm
    You have an excellent start on Squidoo and I expect to see you in the Giant's Club one of these days.
  • Becksta Aug 30, 2011 @ 2:19 pm
    Thank you, Buckhawk, I'll refer back to your comment on my down days
  • Kiosks4business Aug 16, 2011 @ 8:23 am
    A wonderful lens bringing our attentions what its live being hearing impaired - Cracking job!
  • Becksta Aug 16, 2011 @ 7:57 pm
    Thank you
  • AgingIntoDisability Jul 02, 2011 @ 2:10 pm
    Very thorough and well done.
  • Becksta Jul 02, 2011 @ 2:14 pm
    Thank you
  • Ladymermaid Jun 10, 2011 @ 8:14 pm
    What a great lens with a lot of wonderful tips for those suffering from hearing loss. Best wishes.
  • Becksta Jul 03, 2011 @ 6:16 am
    Thank you
  • knit1tat2 Jun 10, 2011 @ 8:01 am
    Thanks for a good lens, had a grandpa who was bone deaf most of his adult life, you made some excellent points!
  • I-sparkle Jun 09, 2011 @ 9:30 am
    I felt that this was an extraordinary piece of work. I am nominating it for a LotD. Fantastic job.
  • getmediawise Jun 09, 2011 @ 8:19 am
    I would also say update your bio :)
  • sluggasteve Jun 08, 2011 @ 7:05 pm
    Good lens Beck. Stay brave.
  • cire81 Jun 08, 2011 @ 6:50 pm
    Lots of content, keep up the good work. Try to focus on traffic building to increase more visit to your site.
  • Becksta Jun 08, 2011 @ 6:53 pm
    I am trying to build my traffic - I daren't share it on facebook too much since I don't want to get blocked for spamming again!!!