Hearing Again 2.0

Or Maybe That Should be Hearing 3.0…

In the summer of 2017 I was subjected to my first NHS hearing test as part of a drive I made to get it registered and changed with my GP. It lead, quite interestingly, to me getting a hear aid and, for the first time in maybe my life, hearing things properly. Who knew?

Since moving to Glasgow it has been a mild struggle to get my English NHS stuff translated to Scottish NHS, because the English system is paper based and as far as I can tell the two systems don’t talk well to each other.

In fact, Joni’s own medical records are still held here from when she was first born, whereas they never were in England. Either way, her vaccinations are constantly being questioned.

My hearing aid in England was a Phonak - and it was nice and flesh coloured (for me, admittedly). When I mentioned to the GP I needed to register has having one, they noted that they didn’t do that model here. When I eventually had my test this past week it was clear that my results were not going to be able to be compared to last years, because my records had not transferred.

My audiologist was happy that my hearing had got worse a bit, but not massively, and he did this by pulling the old profile off my hearing aid by plugging it into his computer. It was a clever thing to do, and good service, but after ten minutes he returned to be disappointed that they, in Scotland, couldn’t service my old hearing aid and it’d need to be replaced.

Hearing loss is categorised in two ways - volume and clarity. I have perfect clarity, but low power and need amplification. My old hearing aid was not powerful enough, and also had an open dome - what this meant was that my hearing aid was only doing part of the job - my ear was still hearing the sound around. In fact, the best option is for the new hearing aid to do all of the noise catching, so my new aid is more powerful, grey, and larger, but most importantly it blocks all sounds.

This is called a closed dome, and since I’ve started to get used to it, it is far more uncomfortable, but much much better at making me hear. In fact, the difference is pretty huge.

So that’s me, hearing better again, again. And that’s nice.