There are certain sounds that Scott Malmstrom had never known. He was born with hearing impairment, and it gradually got worse throughout his life. By fourth grade, he began experimenting with hearing aids. Over time, he became what he calls a “professional lip reader.”
Hearing aids didn’t help much with the type of hearing loss Scott had. “Where he struggled was speech discrimination – being able to recognize and understand what’s being said,” he says. “That’s where they eyes take over. That’s what I’ve done over many years and became very good at it.”
But his diminished hearing did keep him from experiencing certain things, and he says it affected his communication with those he loved. Today, through the magic of cochlear implants, Scott is hearing new things and experiencing life in a way he hadn’t quite imagined.
“Hearing is something you don’t know you’re missing until you get it,” he says. “There’s nothing better than what’s happened here at Mayo Clinic and the cochlear implant process … It’s the best thing I ever did.”
In the video below, Scott shares his story of dealing with hearing loss, going through the cochlear implant process, and experiencing what it’s like to hear again.