Hearing management

05 November 2004

Marissa - the eighth month

A while ago, Widex brought a new series of hearing aids onto the market, some of which are specifically aimed at people with severe hearing loss.

A while ago, Widex brought a new series of hearing aids onto the market. There are many different ones for people who are very hard of hearing and those who have only limited hearing. But, for someone like me, who has very severe hearing loss, the choice is generally very limited.

Now Widex has brought a new series of hearing aids onto the market and I am in the privileged position to be able to test them. Yesterday I got the hearing aids from Cariena and and I am extremely excited about them. It feels as if my heart keeps on bouncing every time when I realise how much better I can hear and what adifference they're making. I intend keeping a diary for the next week about the changes and differences between these new hearing aids and the ones I used to have.

Differences between the new and the old hearing aids
The differences I can immediately detect are the following:

  • They are lighter to wear, even though they are more or less the same size as the previous ones.
  • When Carina fitted them for me, the sound was very loud and she could tone them down quite a bit. The previous hearing aids were set at their maximum sound level so that I could benefit as much as possible. This means that there is room for changing to a louder setting, when necessary.
  • I definitely hear lower sounds more clearly with these new hearing aids.
  • My own voice also sounds very loud to me and I will have to learn to speak more softly.
  • With the other hearing aids I could hear other peoples' footsteps – now I can also hear my own.
  • A new sound I could hear was that of the glass being placed on the table. I picked it up and put it down again, just to make sure that that was what I had heard.
  • My mother has always said thaI breathe very loudly and with these new hearing aids, I can now hear my own breathing.

It is truly amazing how technology changes and improves. I am very excited now that I am discovering all sorts of new things with the help of my new hearing aids. There really is a huge improvement and it makes me very excited about the future.

I had speech and hearing therapy last night with my new hearing aids. Marja says they make such a difference and that I definitely hear far better with them than with the old ones. I am so pleased. They re also lighter on the ears and they don't hurt me at all. They still make me sweat, though, but I suspect that's not the fault of the hearing aids.

My speech therapy is going well and I think this is also coupled with an increase in self-confidence. I took quite a dip recently, but have regained my spirits and am feeling like my old self again. I suppose it's all part of growing up.

Recently, DTV filmed a series of beauty tips, which I presented. They were very happy with my presentation and asked that we film another six shortly. At work things are also going well and I have appointments every day. I work part-time for two salons and also see clients at my own home or in theirs. So things are going great and I am happy that I can make the most of my life. The future looks good.


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Hearing Expert

Francis Slabber is a Speech & Language Therapist and Audiologist who has owned and run The Hearing Clinic in Wynberg, Cape Town for the last 17 years. Francis and her team have extensive experience in fitting and supplying hearing aids as well as assistive living devices. Francis has served as the Western Cape Chairperson for the South African Association of Audiologists for three years and has given many talks on the topic of hearing loss and amplification. The Hearing Clinic has a special interest in adult and geriatric hearing impairment, hearing aid fittings and hearing rehabilitation.

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