How I recovered my hearing, and then some...
You might have noticed that I’ve been a bit quiet on the blogging front.
That’s because something happened that I’ve been a bit reluctant to talk about.
Before you start worrying, it’s not a bad thing…far from it. But I wanted to be sure that I definitely had some good news.
So here it is – you remember when I lost my hearing in my left ear overnight?
I’d already got severe/profound hearing loss, then woke up one February morning to find I couldn’t hear at all, even with my ultra-powerful hearing aid in.
The good news is that I knew from going completely deaf in my right ear that I needed to get steroid treatment from A&E. And that's what I did.
Fast forward to three weeks later and I’m going through the usual bedtime routine. I wiped my mascara off and threw the cotton pad in the bathroom bin.
I stopped. Pressed the pedal on the metal bin again. Let the lid fall.
Ping! Clear and resonant as a bell.
I didn’t know what to think. Even when I’d been able to use my powerful hearing aid the best I’d heard from the bathroom bin had been a muffled-sounding plunk. This ringing sound was something I hadn’t heard for over 3 years when the hearing loss in my left ear started.
I didn’t dare hope. But over the following days and weeks it became clear that I was hearing more and more. My husband had been testing my hearing for weeks apparently – talking to me behind my back, and from other rooms. And gradually I could hear him. And that was amazing.
And a very strange place to be in. While I was absolutely delighted my hearing had improved, I was very worried that this was a blip, and one morning I’d wake up completely deaf again.
When I lost my hearing I’d been immediately started on the road to having a cochlear implant. And although I told audiology I didn’t think I needed it, they encouraged me to have the first assessment - an auditory brain stem response test.
For anyone who hasn’t had this, you have electrodes placed on your forehead, the top of your head and behind your ears. You also have testing electrodes placed in your ear canals which means you can’t hear anything externally. You then sit back and watch something fairly unexciting while the computer tests how your auditory nerve reacts to certain sounds. It was the most relaxing test I’ve ever had in audiology!
The test showed some startling results – in the eight weeks since my trip to the emergency room my left ear had gone from completely deaf to within normal levels for someone my age. My hearing loss had recovered not just to the previous severe/profound level, it had recovered completely! Absolutely miraculous!
[in other news, my right ear remains completely dead as a dodo]
My ultra-powerful hearing aid was confiscated by the head-scratching hearing therapist, and I left hospital with a smile from ear to ear, and no hearing aid at all.
Now I’m waiting to hear what, if anything, audiology think I need for my continuing single-sided deafness.