Tonight I went to LIJ for a meeting about " Stratagies and Therapy Hints for the Hearing Impaired". It was very very interesting. I felt right at home because I was surrounded by people just like me who have a hearing loss. This wonderful doctor spoke about how if you speak to someone and you cant understand them tell the person " Im Hard of hearing" " Can you please repeat what you said". I thought this topic tonight was really interesting because many people that came have differet degrees of hearing loss. I couldnt hear anything thankfully there was an interpreter who I was able to rely on.The speech pathologist also gave us speech reading hints- here are some.
1- have the light at your back and on the speakers face
2-KEEP ALERT and attentive.
3-Take advantage of all visual clues ( emotion, gestures, etc)
4- Be willing to ask people to repeat.
5- Do not try to get every word. Frequently a few words will provide you with enough information to clarify the entire statement.
( I deafinitely agree with number 5 because I do that all the time. I dont catch all the words but If i hear kitchen & drink that means to get whoever a drink.)
6- Dont try to seperate speech reading from hearing. In conversation you will hear some and see some. Take advantage of the hearing and fill in with speech reading.
The doctor said: " We have to make work, meaning, the hearing aids or the ci has to work making sure it has good batteries and is functioning to a comfortable program. She also said " We have to train our brains how to HEAR (BY LISTENING), PAYING ATTENTION*, and FOCUSING all the time.
MOST IMPORTANTLY- ( WHAT I DONT DO) is make sure u tell the person who u are speaking to that you are " HEARING IMPARIED" before you continue on with the conversation. Unlike me its a awful habit that I have when Im out somewhere and I rely on the person whos with me to tell me what the other person has said. Like for instance I went to the movies the other night because a movie was showing with Closed Caption. I relied on my boyfriend to tell me what the manager was saying on how to use the Rear Window device. So I turned to Will and he said to the manager " Shes Hearing Impaired she didnt understand what you said, can u repeat." I dont know why i do this but i do it all the time and its a very bad habit.
It was my turn to speak because the doctor wanted to get to know everyone So I told everyone my story that I was born with sensorineural hearing loss and what im dealing with now with my tinnitus and recrutment that keeps me up during the night and it very painful. The doctors just couldnt believe that im suffering. They want me to make apointment ASAP "Tommorow" she goes as a joke and starts laughing lol. I was shocked because of all the attention and support I was getting. I am going to take this opportunity and meet with the doctor who wants me to do an entire evaluation all over again. She also thinks I need a new ENT & Audiologist and shes right its about time. They are wonderful people here at LIJ. I went to the right place tonight and I'm so glad I did. I also saw my best buddy Roberta there so that made the night even better.
Next week is the HLAA meeting that will be my first meeting and Im trying to get an interpreter the doctor tonight said she is willing to set one up for me. I am looking forward to my first HLAA meeting.
Soon-- once I get better im considering the CI now that I know alot more information and I dont want to feel left out anymore and I want to be able to communicate better with those around me. The doctors also thought this would be a great idea for me.
Finally- I met this mother her son is 17 years old and hes been hard of hearing since he was 10 years old. I told her to email me tonight beacuse I am willing to help her son with advice on hearing loss & if he has any questions. I am sure most of my experiences will help her son get through this so he is comfortable with his hearing loss and knows what to do and where to go. This really made my night to see a mother whos son is struggling to communicate taking her first steps in helping her son. It really made me happy to see this tonight.
Overall, Today I learned quite a bit from this meeting, so glad I went.