Friday, February 28, 2014

A Nice Surprise at the Audiologist

Yesterday, I had my six-month hearing aid check with my audiologist. While I was in the waiting area, I looked up and saw a television screen on the wall that hadn't been there at my last visit. The TV was showing information about hearing aids, but there was no audio and no captioning. Then, I saw this sign (shown at left) next to the TV. I had been to a hearing loop demonstration once, so I decided to give it a try. I reached up and switched the program on my hearing aids by simply pressing a button on one of them. Instantly I heard the audio of the program which explained the benefits of hearing loops and how they work with hearing aids and cochlear implants. I was impressed. Very cool! You can learn more about hearing loops and the Let's Loop America initiative at http://www.hearingloop.org//loopAmerica.htm

When I saw my audiologist, I got some good news. For a few months now I have been concerned that my hearing has dropped. I've been turning up my hearing aids and straining to hear more than usual. When I talked to my audiologist about this, she had some very reassuring words to say. She told me if she turned my hearing aids up 2 levels, I would be right at where she had originally programmed my hearing aids when I got them. She said it is very common for hearing aid wearers to need them turned down at first but over time as their brain gets used to the volume inputs, to have the hearing aids turned up.

She had me try my hearing aids turned up 1 level. I really could not discern much of a difference so I asked her to try another level higher. She did and that's where I am at right now. It was an improvement but not overwhelmingly so. She said that in her experience it's best not to adjust upwards of more than 2 levels at a time. She recommended I try it out for 2 weeks and if I didn't like it I could come back at no cost and have them turned down. I agreed to follow her plan. So far, I have loved the additional volume and feel quite comfortable with it. When I was in my sign language class last night, I was surprised at how much more I heard of my fellow students with their laughter, their side conversations, rustling of papers, etc. I really felt part of the class for the first time. I hadn't realized how set apart I had felt previously. So all around, I had a great visit to my audiologist.


3 comments:

Liz Fisher said...

Some positive feeling that day for you Sarah. Brilliant.

jsterkens said...

HI Sarah,


Love your blog and congratulations on making it in the Top 20 "Deaf Blogs" list!


I enjoyed reading about your hearing loop experience in your audiologist's office. Kudos to your audie for installing a loop in the waiting room.


Did you know that librarians in Wisconsin are one of the reasons hearing loops in that state are moving forward? They are using the LSTA grant to fund loops in their meeting rooms, front and information desks. Over 80 libraries are using the technology. See here: www.wrlsweb.org/2011/03/hearing-loops-wrls-libraries/ and here www.loopwisconsin.com/Libraries.aspx


Best regards,


Juliette Sterkens

Sarah Wegley said...

That's fantastic news, Juliette. Thanks for sharing!