Today I was listened to by an audiologist. This isn’t a first for me – I’ve been to many audiology appointments over the course of my life, starting at around the age of 5 when my teachers accused me of not paying attention in class, and I said I couldn’t hear, and they said of course you can, we’ll test your hearing to prove it, and oh…
You see, I have one good ear. And one very much not so good ear. I wish that I had the graphs in a format that I could share here, but the best I have is a sketch from today, as I didn’t think to ask for a print out.
The left part of the drawing is my right ear, which is good. The right part is my left ear, which starts with mild/ moderate hearing loss, and heads right off to severe. Unfortunately, it’s most severe in the range that you need for understanding speech.
Usually I get by, and most people don’t even realise I have a hearing problem. That’s because I adapt my behaviour, move myself so I have my right ear to the conversation, and of course, I lip read.
Except, 2020. Masks.
So, no lip reading. And I work in retail. And I’m struggling, so I had another of those conversations with my GP, way back in August (as an aside, and I know that there are good GPs, but why do so many of them disbelieve patients? Do people regularly claim to be deaf when they aren’t?), and asked for another referral to sort out a hearing aid. And last week I got a phone call and a cancellation, and today I had my hearing test.
The good news is that there is some residual hearing at all parts of the range, so a hearing aid will help. The better news is that hearing aids are digital now, so they can be programmed to boost according to what you need in the range, instead of the old analogue aid that I had before, which just boosted all sound.
I am actually really excited by this. Even the analogue aid I had before did help, but it was also exhausting. So I’m really hopeful that this time it will really help and I will get to hear things that at the moment I just don’t.
Oh, and there was a beautiful sunset today. So that was nice too.