I'm having Baha dreams.
No, not the tropical vacation spot. And no, I don't mean not some obscure religion.
The Baha I'm speaking of is a surgically implantable system for treatment of hearing loss that works through direct bone conduction. Specifically, it stands for: bone anchored hearing aids.
Supposedly it works miracles for the hearing impaired like myself. When I was given an evaluation this morning, I fell in love with it. I'm a candidate. Woohoo!
Unfortunately, when my surgeon approached my insurance company three years ago, they denied the surgery and I couldn't afford to pay for it. Hopefully, United has moved out of the dark ages and will approve it now.
I lost my hearing when I was 21, thus I've been hard of hearing all my adult life.
I was in the Air Force and I worked in an extremely noisy shop with inadequate ear protection. To top it off, when I began to have excruciating pain, I was pregnant with my first child and the AF base hospital OB/GYN clinic didn't believe I was having a serious problem. They insisted that it's normal for expectant women to have earaches and headaches. Thus, they allowed the tumor to grow in my ear for many months. The day the OB clinic finally sent me to ENT, I overheard the doctor saying that "I'll stop her malingering once and for all. We're going to prove nothing's wrong." Instead, the ENT doctor found my tumor. I wish I could have seen the OB's face when she got the news. I never saw her again, however. That's how the Air Force medicine worked - I rarely saw the same doctor twice. After Luke was born, I had a radical left mastoidectomy (ear surgery). The pain went away, but so did much of the hearing. This morning, the audiologist said I have "severe to profound" hearing loss.
Unfortunately, no hearing aids have been able to help much. I wear an over-the-ear model on my left ear. See the diagram left. My aid is similar to the one pictured on the bottom middle. It helps a little. If someone stands next to my left ear and speaks, I can't understand them. However, it seems to help my overall hearing. I don't ask "what" as often and I don't have to turn the radio up as loud as when I'm not wearing it.
So wish me luck. I would love to be able to hear conversations without missing half of what is said, or misunderstanding so much.
This wasn't much of a Valentine's Day post. Of course, I was at a softball game all evening and haven't celebrated yet. Hubby and I plan to celebrate Saturday night. I hope you all had a very happy Valentine's Day!
Thursday, February 14, 2008
I'm having Baha dreams.