Q&A: Sound after cochlear implant activation

6 01 2013

I got activated on Dec 26, 2012. First I was very excited to hear beeps, sounds being heard through the implant. After the audiologist was done programming, she started to speak to me. To my disappointment, it sounded like a ‘whisper’ and not even Mickey Mouse. Did you hear whisper like that or it never occurred to you?

– Zahid

Hello Zahid

Congratulations on your activation! There is a range of responses to activation, from hearing nothing to understanding speech right away. It all depends very much on each individual’s hearing history. The fact that you are hearing something right away is an great result and as you practise and listen daily, your ability to hear will improve and refine itself. It’s an evolving process which will take some time, longer for some than for others, but all cochlear implant recipients should do very well and achieve hearing similar to that of a normal-hearing person.

In my personal experience, I didn’t hear much at all at switch-on. Donald Duck then came to stay and he stayed for months. Eventually he left and everything sounded normal to me.

It helps to talk to others going through the same process. You can make contact with other cochlear implant users for support;

MED-EL – HearPeers

Cochlear – Cochlear Community

Advanced Bionics – Hearing Journey

There is an excellent website with all the information you need to know about making the most out of your cochlear implant at cochlearimplantHELP. Good luck and enjoy your journey to better hearing.




2 responses

6 01 2013
Ruth Kaldor

It sounded like a whisper to me too but wow, now my good unimplanted ear is my bad ear. Here is my blog http://hellovincent.wordpress.com/
Good Luck!

7 01 2013
Peter Stelmacovich

This sounds exactly like my experience. But I didnt even feel like it was a whisper at first, but rather like R2D2. Then it became a whisper, then sounded like Jerry Lewis, finally ending up sounding “normal” after about 6 months. Be patient! I have described it all in this blog posting: http://deafenedbutnotsilent.wordpress.com/2012/01/16/what-does-a-cochlear-implant-sound-like/

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