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I had a cochlear implant at 50 and am living my best life

76 replies

Ibizafun · 28/10/2021 22:50

I assume this will only interest people with a hearing loss but even if I can reach one person who is considering it, it would be worth it.

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ilkleymoorbartat · 28/10/2021 22:52

I don't know about that, but I read your thread title and it made me smile after a horrible day. I'm very happy for you!

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Ibizafun · 28/10/2021 22:53

That’s so sweet of you!! Thank you x

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TheCheeseBadge · 28/10/2021 22:53

So glad to hear it has worked well for you, OP.

Were you profoundly deaf before the surgery? And had you previously had hearing or were you born deaf / hard of hearing? I work with Deaf adults and don't know much at all about cochlear implants but I was under the impression that they didn't work well unless you had them when you were young.

What made you go for it at 50?

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Classica · 28/10/2021 22:54

Did you feel any pressure from the Deaf community to refuse the implant?

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PesosBandage · 28/10/2021 22:54

Hi! Thanks for starting this. Have you had hearing loss all your life, or is it a more recent thing? I'm guessing it's pretty severe, to go for cochlear implants?

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Wootothewho · 28/10/2021 22:55

I agree with ikleymoorbartat, your post made me smile :-) I don’t know anything about cochlear implants, did you have hearing before and if you did does it sound different with the implant? Do people/noises sound like you expected?

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Dancingsmile · 28/10/2021 22:55

That's absolutely fantastic.
what made you decide to have it done ?

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WeeM · 28/10/2021 22:55

That’s fabulous!

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CherryBlossomAutumn · 28/10/2021 22:56

Thanks for posting!

Also interested whether this was something that deaf community were supportive of. Have a child with hearing loss and waiting to see if it’s progressive… so any good news stories helpful.

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nc87653 · 28/10/2021 22:57

This is fantastic!

How 'bad' was your hearing loss before the implant?

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Ibizafun · 28/10/2021 23:00

I had normal hearing till my early 20’s. Got hearing aids at 26, gradual decline from there over years to the point I only had about 4% hearing before my op.

I had my left ear done first, then when I realised how amazing it was, my right 6 months later. Horrendous at first as everything sounds robotic and had to put in a lot of work but nothing has ever been this worthwhile. It is easier if you have speech recognition from the past but my audiologist told me she has seen people born deaf who have also benefited greatly.

The microphones are off the ear hidden under my hair so they don’t show at all, and the best thing is when I take them off at night I don’t hear dh snore.

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bollocksybollocks · 28/10/2021 23:01

Lovely to hear this I have an 8 year old son who has cochlear implants, we haven't regretted it for a moment, he is incredibly happy, good for you and all the best for the future

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purpleme12 · 28/10/2021 23:02

Hello
I'm very interested in this thread
I wear hearing aids (although my hearing loss wouldn't be bad enough for a cochlear implant)
Did your hearing loss get worse and worse as you got older? Is that why you had it at 50?
I heard that cochlear implants may or may not work in people and if they don't then your hearing is even worse than before - is this true?

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WeeM · 28/10/2021 23:03

I find it fascinating how your brain can adapt and learn and change the sound.

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purpleme12 · 28/10/2021 23:03

This is what I am worried about for me, if I'll get this gradual decline

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Ibizafun · 28/10/2021 23:04

My hearing does not sound any different to normal now as the brain adapts and speech now sounds the same. I was afraid to h e it done as there is no guarantee of how you will adapt but my hearing got so bad I had nothing to lose. I hardly left the house.

CherryBlossomAutumn what timescale have you been given to know whether your child’s hearing loss is progressive or not?

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Ibizafun · 28/10/2021 23:05

The only thing that is not great is music.. music I’m not used to sounds distorted, so I’m stuck in an 80’s time warp enjoying all the old music from before I lost my hearing!

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FinallyFluid · 28/10/2021 23:06

My DH was on 3% when they implanted him, it was a huge decision (and yet not) because the other alternative didn't bear thinking about.

He is singularly implanted and has had it now for 18 years.

It is amazing technology, he was implanted at Southampton by Peter Ashcroft who was one of the pioneers of CI technology.

If anyone is reading this and wobbling about whether to do it or not, the answer is JFDI, I haven't known anyone to be sorry about their choices.

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Ibizafun · 28/10/2021 23:07

WeeM yes it’s incredible. It’s your brain that does all the work. I was slowing down in every way, I’m now so much quicker not just hearing but at understanding, as if your auditory nerve isn’t stimulated you really just slow down. Hearing aids work well for this too. I can so clearly see why hearing loss is linked to dementia.

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FinallyFluid · 28/10/2021 23:11

Ibiza

Apologies for the mini hijack. Blush

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Ibizafun · 28/10/2021 23:12

FinallyFluid I’m so happy for your dh. The technology has changed now, does he ever think about upgrading the implant? For some reason I was in the top 1% of people who have benefited from it, I think my brain just grabbed it I was so desperate, so fed up of being in a room of people but totally isolated.

I now use the phone there’s nothing really I can’t do, it’s connected by Bluetooth to my iphone so I’m dancing round the kitchen with my favourite tunes Grinblaring in my head which no one else can hear

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Ibizafun · 28/10/2021 23:14

purpleme12 I used to worry about it all the time like you, but at least you know something can be done about it.

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FlibbertyGiblets · 28/10/2021 23:17

Wow such an uplifting and happy thread, made me smile, too.

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Finals1234 · 28/10/2021 23:17

Congrats OP that sounds amazing! It reminds me of the film The Sound of Metal, I think it's on Amazon Prime, it's the true story of band member and his journey with hearing loss. Have you seen it and if so what did you think of it?

(Nothing useful to add here, but very happy for you!)

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Ibizafun · 28/10/2021 23:17

purpleme12 If you have memory of speech (ie were not born deaf), your outcome will probably be very good. You are right in that there’s no going back once you have the op, but let me tell you I am grateful for this every day, and would not go back for anything.

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