Editor’s Note: A patient shared with us what we like to call his “journey to better hearing”. The most important part of his journey, is when it began. Most are surprised to learn it started at age 50. Hearing loss doesn’t just appear at retirement, it is a process that develops over a lifetime. Illness, exposure to loud noise such as rock concerts, machinery, gun shots, and genetics all can play a role in the quality of your hearing. D. Baker, thank you for sharing your story!
When I was 50 years old, my wife kept complaining that I didn’t hear her. I started to realize that I was missing a lot of what my grandkids were saying to me as well. I decided to try hearing aids, more to satisfy my wife. But, I have been wearing my hearing aids ever since. I am now 72 and have invested in multiple sets of hearing aids over the past 20 years.
Hearing aids have gotten smaller and better sounding compared to when I first started using them. I wear them faithfully every day because otherwise I would miss too much. It took me a while to adapt to hearing my own voice. Initially, it was strange when I put the hearing aids in and I could hear myself. But now, what’s strange is when I take my hearing aids out, and I can’t hear myself. When I take my hearing aids out, it sounds like someone has taken two pillows and put them over my ears.
I have adapted to hearing my voice with my hearing aids in and my brain has adapted to other sounds as well. I remember when I started wearing hearing aids and I could hear paper and water running. My brain wasn’t used to hearing those noises and they bothered me. But, the more I wore the hearing aids, the more my brain adapted.
Hearing aids have made such a difference in my life. I communicate with more ease and confidence, my wife doesn’t have to repeat everything and I can hear my grandkids so much better. I get up in the morning and the first thing I do is put my hearing aids in. My hearing aids fit over the ear and a thin tube with a small dome attached to the hearing aid fits down into my ear canal. They are not hard to insert and you can’t even see them when they are in.
I got my hearing aids from the Doctor’s at Pittsburgh Audiology and cannot thank them enough for their guidance and expertise. They tested my hearing, made recommendations, explained my options to me and let me listen to hearing aids in their office. On the day I picked up my hearing aids, they explained everything about the care and maintenance of the hearing aids and made sure I knew how to get them in and out. They are truly the best at what they do and I am thankful. And, my wife thanks them too!