Say goodbye to single-sided deafness with Naída Link CROS

27 07 2017

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Hear from both ears with the Naída Link CROS

If you have one cochlear implant and no hearing in your other ear, you have single-sided deafness and struggle to hear as well as someone with two functional ears. If you would like to be able to hear from your other ear, Advanced Bionics have released the Phonak Naída Link CROS which allows you to hear binaurally.

This is an amazing industry first for cochlear implant recipients.

This is very exciting news for Advanced Bionics recipients with single-sided deafness, especially those in the UK who wish to have a second cochlear implant but do not qualify under current NICE guidelines.

Approximately 45% of recipients have single-sided hearing with one cochlear implant, which makes listening difficult in noisy places such as restaurants or in the car.

I certainly noticed a difference when I went bilateral. With my second cochlear implant, my speech perception improved by 20% and I found listening – and understanding my world – much easier.

I am very excited to see this product available to help improve hearing in noisy environments. Hearing with two “ears” is much more natural and easier than with one.

The Phonak Naída Link CROS is a tiny wireless audio transmitter which picks up sound signals and transmits them to the cochlear implant on the opposite ear.

This technology will be available in the USA and Canada from today, and in Europe from summer 2017.

For more information, check out the Advanced Bionics website.

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My crazy first week with a buzzing ear

24 05 2017

man grimacing buzzing ear

A buzzing ear makes a surprise appearance

Looking back on the first week of realizing I had tinnitus almost brings a tear to my eye. Not to sound negative, but those that have or are currently experiencing unexplained buzzing ear sounds will know the frustrations and stupid thoughts that come with tinnitus.

This week I want to bring peace of mind to those who are currently suffering from a buzzing ear or two.

It’s okay to do stupid things when you first realize that tinnitus is something you may need to manage going forward. Speaking with many tinnitus sufferers, we all have the same story – first embarrassment then laughter.

Going through such a journey with tinnitus can be difficult but when you get to a point of not being worried or bothered by whistles or buzzing ear sounds, this brings fulfilment and control back into your life.

So what are some of the crazy things you’ve done in the first week of experiencing tinnitus?

The first week for me was extremely difficult and looking back at why I actually thought this would work makes me laugh.

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7 of my favourite deaf awareness initiatives for 2017

18 05 2017

woman hiding her mouth

How Deaf Awareness Week is breaking down barriers

It is Deaf Awareness Week in the UK, May 15 to 21, and in the theme of celebrating collaborative work, I want to share with you some of my favourite 2017 awareness initiatives. There were many to choose from, but the ones mentioned below touched my heart.

The purpose of this week is to share knowledge around the fact that 1 in 6 people in the UK is deaf or hard of hearing. It’s important to know how you can communicate with us and include us in everyday life. This week is dedicated to highlighting how you can communicate with deaf and hard of hearing individuals. Spreading awareness aims to improve peoples’ understanding of deafness, hopefully leading to better support and accessibility.

Even though there is no ‘typical’ deaf or hard of hearing person, you should be aware of the possibility that a deaf person might join your seminar, workshop or eat lunch at your restaurant. Are you aware of our needs? Have you made it easy for us to communicate with you and join the conversation? If not, I hope this year’s awareness week inspires you to make changes.

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Qatar Tourism – The importance of accessibility

15 05 2017

Qatar tourism

Improving Qatar tourism with the Accessible Qatar Conference 2017

Have you ever dreamt of travelling the world but were too afraid of the communication difficulties you’ll inevitably experience? As a deaf person, the sheer effort of day-to-day interactions can be enough to discourage a visit to the grocery store, let alone an exotic travel destination like Qatar.

The small Arab nation jutting out from Saudi Arabia into the Persian Gulf is the world’s richest country, with the highest GDP per capita ($140,649) as of 2016. By taking advantage of their natural gas and oil resources, they have made wise investments into the Qatar tourism industry. People from all around the world are eager to explore Qatar’s exciting desert life, have fun at the Aqua Park and relax on one of their many beaches.

Travelling when deaf or hard of hearing can be challenging, especially because our needs have been largely ignored in the disability movement. Staying abroad in a hotel is a huge safety concern, due to the lack of properly adapted alerting systems. Also, we can’t use the telephone services to call the reception desk when we need something. This is very inconvenient, and that’s before even leaving the “comfort” of your hotel.

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Deaf counselling can help you reach your full potential

11 05 2017

deaf counselling

Deaf counselling can help you reach your full potential

Mental health issues can affect everyone. From relationship problems to work stress, we all have stress and anxiety to deal with. However, some of us need a bit more support navigating the complexities of living in a hearing world.

Unfortunately, deaf counselling is still very rare; there are very few deaf-aware and qualified counsellors available.

To answer our counselling questions we interviewed deaf counsellor, Adrian Francis, a specialist in person-centred counselling. Person-centred counselling functions from the belief that people have the natural tendency to develop towards their full potential.

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Unlock the facts and myths of tinnitus sounds

10 05 2017

myths tinnitus sounds

The real story around tinnitus sounds

After a long discussion with Alan, a recent tinnitus sufferer, about some of the facts and myths around tinnitus sounds, I was humbled at the fact he praised the information I’ve been sharing on Instagram, I became frustrated when he also told me about some of the information he had been finding online.

This sparked my curiosity and I started reading through some of the content that Alan had been reading over the past number of months.

After spending a significant amount of time jumping from website to website finding myself becoming more and more frustrated, I felt the best way to put my frustrations into action was by putting together this article.

I’m going to explain some of the myths and hard facts around tinnitus sounds that will hopefully encourage you to see tinnitus in a more positive light.

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10 things I wish audiologists had taught me

3 05 2017

audiologists

Audiologists and hearing rehabilitation

Gianluca Trombetta: A new course to the rescue

When my audiologists finally convinced me to start wearing hearing aids at age 20, I expected to immediately have perfect hearing. But of course, that did not happen. And then I found myself with questions and in situations that I did not know how to handle.

What was I to do when my hearing aids did not work? How should I tell my work colleagues about my hearing loss? How do I properly enjoy my dinner out or a day at the beach? And what technology accessories are relevant for my needs?

I was disappointed and frustrated by what I felt was a lack of support from my audiologists. But I’ve learned that hearing aids are just the start of the hearing rehabilitation journey, the term I use to describe a comprehensive approach to improving your hearing.

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