Hi. I’m Vera. In my early 20s I had a bad dose of the flu, which left me with tinnitus (ringing in the ears) and some loss of high pitched hearing…..I remember realising I couldn’t hear bird song any more. I was warned things might deteriorate, and they did. Nearly 40 years later I am officially severely to profoundly deaf for higher frequency sounds, and moderately deaf for most of the rest. It’s been a slow progression. I didn’t wear hearing aids until I was 40…..first one analogue hearing aid, then two, then two digital hearing aids, subsequently replaced (more than once) with more powerful versions. Last year I was tested for a cochlear implant, but for the moment things aren’t quite bad enough for that. I was encouraged to return in a year or two if things get worse (which they undoubtedly will if past form is anything to go by).
I still hear a lot of sound, especially at the lower pitches. But for me the worst thing is that understanding speech is a real struggle. Many of the sounds of speech, in particular the consonants, are in the higher sound frequencies. I still hear vowels, but on their own they don’t help a lot. So I use a combination of lip reading and good (NHS) hearing aids – plus guesswork, inspired or otherwise.
So that’s me. Early 60s. Retired. Living in a village in Yorkshire with husband, dog and cat. Determinedly carrying on, trying to see the funny side. Doggedly trying not to let my ears stop me doing stuff.
I’d love to hear from you – leave a comment below.