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nellyb (@nellyb)

Parent of a deaf 4 year old

Hearing Loss | Last Active: May 13, 2020 | Replies (11)

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Recruitment can be dreadful…and I KNOW what's happening. I have Meniere's, had it for decades in my right ear (no useful hearing or balance function left there), eventually started wearing an aid in my "good" left ear due to age-related deafness. Then, a year ago, Meniere's went bilateral, attacked my "good" ear. I'd always been told that the level of recruitment in my right ear would make an aid impossible there, so I wasn't surprised to learn that on bad days (Meniere's fluctuates from hour to hour, confusing me and everyone around me) I simply cannot stand to wear the aid. If someone simply moves a piece of paper (no, not crinkling or crushing, just moving) it sounds like an explosion and is physically painful. No one can imagine how awful recruitment can be…unless you're one of the "fortunate" few to "enjoy" it! I understand your daughter ripping out her aids and throwing them–it's precisely what I'd like to do!

I'll get retested once this virus crisis passes as I was only 5% above qualifying for a CI in my right ear almost a year ago. However, I haven't yet found anyone who can assure me that a CI won't have the same recruitment and distortion problems that I have now with aids. A CI is not reversible, so I want to KNOW that there won't be problems with recruitment or distortion if I elect to go that route. The CI clinic has virtually no experience with Menierians, so their assurances that life would be swell with a CI didn't convince me. Yup, a real doubting Thomas, or in my case, Joyce!

Your daughter might also have distortion, which is royally frustrating: I can hear that someone is speaking, but it's just whispery or raspy noise without any discernible words. Hearing tests don't seem to do a good job, at least from the ones I've had over the years, to understanding how much if any distortion there is. Hearing beeps or very simply words is a long way from being able to understand real speech.

Also, understand that not all audiologists are created equal, regardless of how many pretty framed papers they own! I've learned that the woman at Costco, who has no fancy papers, knows more about my disease, hearing problems, and what's newly available than either of the audis or the CI doc at the hearing clinic. The Costco woman was able to adjust my single aid so that I can listen to music and hear something approaching what it should sound like for the first time in well over 30 years. At the time I first lost hearing over 30 years ago, I played in an orchestra and several ensembles but was forced to quit. Not only could I not stand the horrible sounds around me (!!!!!), but I couldn't hear clearly enough to know if I was contributing to the groups…or ruining them.

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Replies to "Recruitment can be dreadful...and I KNOW what's happening. I have Meniere's, had it for decades in..."

Hi Joyce’s. I always hear about recruitment but do not understand what that term is. Thanks for your help!

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