A Hearing Loss & Late Deafened Blog

Testing, testing, left ear to right ear…come in please!

In Cochlear Implants, Deafness, Hearing Loss on February 8, 2008 at 9:57 am

According to the National Institute on Deafness and other Communicatins Disorders (NIDCD):

“Approximately 28 million Americans have a hearing impairment. Two to three out of every 1,000 children are born deaf or hard of hearing.  Nine out of every 10 children are born deaf to hearing parents.  1 out of every 5 people who could benefit from a hearing aid actually wear one.

59,000 people worldwide have received a cochlear implant, 250,000 people would be good candidates for a cochlear implant.  In the U.S. alone, 13,000 adults and 10,000 children have already had cochlear implants.  The above figures do not include people with tinnitus and 10 million Americans who have suffered with noise induced hearing loss or the 30 million more Americans who are exposed to dangerous noise levels daily.”

You would think with these types of numbers (and these stats are only of the U.S.), we’d be further along in our technology of hearing aids.  My point is you ask? How is it that we can put a person on the moon, place satellites in space to keep an eye on our enemies, transplant hearts, kidneys and livers into a dying patient and give them life, give amputees new body parts that look and feel real, yet, we are unable to give the person with hearing loss normal hearing with a decently priced hearing aid. 

Have you seen the latest and newest hearing aids out there?  The Jetsons would loved these. They are looking smaller, cuter, colorful and with a space age design that gives it a clean, smooth look, but the prices are far from small and cute….they are big and spacey!  You certainly wouldn’t want to lose it to your dog’s chewing habits or watch your aid get flushed down the toilet bowl as I once did in the Dominican Republic (long story).  Woooooooooo! there goes $3,000 down the toilet (I swear, it really happened).   Life on the hearing loss track ain’t easy and worst of all or maybe most of all, it ain’t cheap. 

I have so many hearing aid stories like the time I got my first remote control for my aid.  My son at the  tender age of 10, apparently took the remote (without my knowing), and while we were sitting at the dinner table talking, kept turning my aid on and off.  Me, being clueless and having forgotten about the remote, kept looking around wondering what the heck is going on with this new aid.  I took the aid out, put it back in and again my ears were stumped.  Naturally, my son got a good laugh out of this.   Or the time my senegal bird decided he doesn’t like me speaking on the phone.  So when the phone would ring, he would pull my aid out of my ear and fling it across the room so I could not hear and be distracted from him….lol

Sometimes I feel like I’m in outer space with these ears…..testing, testing….left ear to right ear….come in right ear!

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  1. I believe you have the stats wrong about how many C.I. users there are in the world. Currently, there are at least 70,000 people in U.S. with C.I. and that was over five years ago. I don’t know the number is now, but the figures you state is way below than it actually is. Are you looking at Advanced Bionics numbers?

    At any rate, interesting story you shared. I believe my friend has that type of expensive hearing aids and they _do_ look awesome.

  2. That’s a funny story about your bird!! I can’t believe the price of hearing aids. Mine are almost eight years old. With two kids in college this year I’m hoping they’ll last one more year until one of them graduates. The price of hearing aids is nearly the same as one years worth college tuition! It’s wrong insurance won’t pay to cover at least some of the costs!

  3. Hi Rini, I actually got the stats from the NIDCD. They claim the stats were taken in 2005 though I agree, they seemed low. I haven’t checked out the Advanced Bionics numbers at all. Thanks for the feedback.
    saytheword

  4. I saw that statistics updated two months ago and it is outdated. I was surprised, considering it came from NIDCD. I don’t remember where I heard this, but it was several sources, including one from Austrailia.. that there had been 100,000 implants worldwide.

  5. I really love this one. It would be great if we could all afford the new technology but at times it is pay the bills or hear so to speak. My new aids have a function that they automatically adjust when “they” think it is too loud. At times it just isn’t too loud for me so how to you tell a piece of plastic that? I remember when I got my first set of aids and my daughter was 10. I seldom wore them because I hated them but she never knew when I had them in or not. She was great for back talking me and of course without them I never heard her but when I did she got into trouble so my aids were called “the mean machines”. She hated when I wore them. Of course now that she is 32 she often double checks to make sure I have them in and on when I visit. She says it isn’t fair that I cna tune the kids out. Hey we have to have some benefits here don’t we?

    LW

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