By Chelle George
Yesterday I got my new hearing aid molds and the feedback problem is not nearly as bad. That’s good news. The new ones don’t itch and irritate my ears like the domes did which is also good news. There is still some feedback while I insert them into my ears so my audiologist put in a 6 second delay to give me time to put them in without feedback. Now they play a little ditty when the battery snaps shuts. Ta-da-ta-tah!” You are now hearing again.
There were some issues I had with the app which my audiologist tried very hard to help with. My first problem is reconnecting to the app if I happen to walk too far away from phone. He told me to turn off the whole phone and it should be easier to reconnect. He demonstrated and it connected. Later, while at home I walked too far away and had to reconnect. The app kept telling me it couldn’t connect and I should go into demo mode. The app doesn’t do me any good in demo mode. Since we just turned my phone off and on an hour before, I hoped I wouldn’t have to do that every time I walked too far away. I fiddled around some more and found out if I turned the Bluetooth device off and back on, it reconnected the first try. Okay, I got that down now.
The next problem I needed help with was the spatial configuration (mic direction). I could not figure out how to zoom my hearing aids forward and I could not get them to go right either which I think would be great while I’m driving to be able to hear my passenger better. In my last pair of hearing aids, they focused forward in the car at the windshield making it very difficult to hear my passengers so my audiologist set a specific car program in them that kept all the mics opens. So when I saw I could change the direction of my mics in the new hearing aids I was excited but then I couldn’t get it to work. My audiologist fiddled around with it for a bit and even called the company about it. It seems there are some glitches in the iPhone app and that’s one of them. I sure hope they get the bugs worked out of it so I can try the right direction while driving someday.
I got something new to play with, a streaming device for my TV. I haven’t been able to hook it up yet and even though I watch very little TV, I’m kind of excited. The only time I watch TV consistently is during football season and that starts Sept 4th! (Go Steelers! Go Seahawks!) Normally I use captions when I watch TV or a movie but I take the captions off when watching football because they get the way of the game. I have the noise turned up because I like the sound of the crowd but I do not understand much of the announcers say. So I’ll have to set it up this week with a movie to be ready for the game.
As I got in my car at the audiologist office I thought, “I don’t have a radio in the car. I should hook up Pandora because I can!” My 80’s station popped up and “Another One Bites the Dust” came up. Oh good song…. Good sound too. It was closer to what I remember 30 years ago. So I’m all happy in my car singing with Queen and thinking about the coming football season.
When I get home, there was a mad rush to get things together for an evening picnic with friends in the mountains (that’s when I walked too far from my phone again and lost my connection). There was no real reason to keep my the Bluetooth device going at the picnic so I put it away but of course kept my hearing aids in. As we pulled in parking spaces were rapidly filling up because of a wedding at the reception building just beyond the picnic parking lot. This happens a lot there and it can be kind of irritating but I think all of our group got in.
We greet the others there and I talk to a few people about my new hearing aids and then of course conversation drifts this way and that way and I’m following pretty good. We have dinner and then sit around the fire pit. Music suddenly fires up at the reception just beyond a patch of trees. “Man, that’s loud,” I keep thinking. I keep looking at the others who keep chatting. They seem unaffected. I look a few picnic tables back wondering if I hear it now because of my new hearing aids or because we are closer. I know we’ve been here dozens of times while weddings went on but I had no idea the music was in hearing range there.
Without meaning to, I say out loud, “That’s loud,” as I look into the trees. A few others heard me and laughed. “Now you’re hearing what we hear.” I can’t believe I haven’t heard the music like that before. Wow. The world is a noisy place.
My only issue left is my ears still work out the molds. As I talk/chew/laugh, they work out and I’m pushing them back in. I guess I have an overly strong muscle there. It doesn’t irritate my ears like the domes did at least. They just slide right back in and without feedback so it doesn’t rate high on my list of issues but more like a minor irritation. Maybe there’s something I else I can or maybe I’ll get used to poking them back but at any rate, I’ll be bringing that up on my next visit to the audiologist. First I need to wear them a while and see what else might need to be fine turned.
So for now, I’m feeling better with these new hearing aids. I’m about to run errands in my radio-less car so I’ll hook everything up and listen to my 80’s station on Pandora.