My Cochlear Implant (Part 2) – Activation

November 24, 2010 at 2:33 am 4 comments

My cochlear implant was activated on Nov. 16 — four weeks after my surgery. At this point it is really too early to tell if it will prove to be beneficial in the long run. Early signs, however, are positive.

The implant seems to be working as expected so far. Everything is louder; in fact the implant is picking up frequencies that my hearing aids failed to pick up. This means that I need to get used to hearing a lot of new things or maybe a better way to put it is that I’m hearing many of the same things but in new ways.

For example, pretty much everything that is said (by me or by someone else), I hear accompanied by a lower tone. That tone, right now, is almost overpowering so it can make things difficult to understand. That, apparently, is normal and my audiologist says it will diminish as time goes by.

My biggest issue was one of discrimination so I am well aware of what hearing things but not being able to understand them is like. But I am definitely able to hear better and in most cases understand better. As it was with my hearing aids and FM System, there are some days/situations that are better than others and I guess that’s pretty much par for the course.

Another example is that opening a bag of something like potato chips, is akin to listening to a jackhammer. Actually, as someone who has used a jackhammer, I can say it’s louder! But that will get better with time.

After living for a week with my activated ci, I definitely am beginning to understand why everyone I’ve spoken with who has experience with a ci (surgeons, audiologists, researchers, users, family, et al.) has told me that it will take up to a year until you are really comfortable with it and benefitting from it. I had been thinking that I could just work harder at it and I would pick it up faster, but that’s not how it works!

So the key words here are cautious optimism!

I’ll write next in early- to mid-December after my next appointment.

By Tony Trott, ECNV Peer Mentor & Editor

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Entry filed under: Deaf/HoH -- Vlog, Health, Other. Tags: , .

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4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Lyn  |  November 25, 2010 at 1:01 am

    Tony,
    Thanks for sharing your personal journey and glad to learn that your progress is on track!

    Reply
  • 2. Jerry Hutton  |  November 26, 2010 at 2:10 am

    Tony, Thanks for keeping us informed. I congratulate you on your patience thus far and know that you have the strength to see this through successfully. The fact that you are hearing louder sounds hopeful, but I can understand that it may be overwhelming at times! Keep up the good work.

    Best wishes from us both, Jerry and Warren

    Reply
  • 3. Jim Guy  |  November 29, 2010 at 1:06 am

    Patience and optimism are among the hardest things to sustain, but they are powerful medicine. Hang in there, buckaroo. We’re all with you.

    Reply
  • 4. Mike Mc.  |  December 3, 2010 at 2:37 am

    This is a good suspense story!

    Reply

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