Andrew’s New Hearing Aids

Due to Andrew’s tentative diagnosis of auditory neuropathy, Andrew finally received his hearing aids this month. The NY State Early Intervention program that provides all of Andrew’s various therapies absorbs the costs for his hearing-related appointments, therapies, and the actual hearing aids (which are sold for $4800 out-of-pocket). Andrew has already had three audiology appointments. The first one was to squeeze blue gel into his ears to get a mold for the hearing aids. The second took place about two weeks later to actually try out the new molds and hearing aids. The third one took place approximately a week later just to see how things were going. Additionally, Andrew will have appointments every couple of months for mold refittings and further testing.

Andrew getting a mold of his ears

right hearing aid

We also received hearing aid swag from Phonak, the hearing aid manufacturers: a colorful bag to store all our gear, two pages of decorative stickers for the hearing aids (our personal favorite would be a toss up between the flames or the leopard print), a dozen batteries, a device that measures battery life, a container to store washed ear molds in, a hearing aid case, a bulb to clear water out of the hearing aids, a tube to make sure the hearing aids amplifications are working properly, a hearing aid clip, a book entitled Oliver Gets Hearing Aids, and an Oliver hand puppet. Score.

The swag

Before we get into whether or not we think the hearing aids are helping, it is important to note what we DO know about his hearing:

  • Andrew is not deaf but he is hearing impaired.
  • Andrew loves, loves music. The more up-beat and higher the voices the better. His favorites are Countdown Kids Lullabies and both volumes of Brooklyn-based country trio, Menage Twang. “Listen Sister, Don’t Date a Hipster” is a particular favorite.
  • Andrew is able to hear even the softest and slightest of noises. He will stir and wake up to pages of a newspaper turning.
  • In fact, Andrew is a little too sensitive to even the slightest of noises in ways that his twin sister and other babies his age are not.
  • Andrew has NEVER turned his head to the direction of a sound in his life (this is called ‘localization’).
  • Andrew coos now and then but does not make any consonant sounds, something he should be doing by this age. This is a classic sign that not all is well with his hearing.
  • His hearing tests always come back abnormal.

    Kind of confusing, right?

    So are the hearing aids helping? It’s only been a few weeks, but we do not notice any difference in his behavior. But maybe in time, we will?

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    One Response to Andrew’s New Hearing Aids

    1. Kim M says:

      Love the swag! Especially the Oliver book.

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