Sunday, 15 May 2005

Benefits of bi-lateral

She once had one of her processors broken, and then she had CI on just 1 side. But this is already a big plus... she could still hear. Without bi-lateral CI, she would have been without sound.
In that time we noticed that with 1 CI she could not hear us as well. Noise was a real problem then, whereas with 2 CI's she has no problem following a conversation in the car or in the kitchen.
Also the sense of where sound comes from is helped with 2xCI. When hearing on 1 side, other senses and logic will determine where sound comes from. Bi-lateral CI will help a lot.

Regarding an additional operation.... I have seen children in Lottes school that got a second one after 1 to 2 years of CI. This means that in order to stimulate the new CI-side, the other side has to be disconnected. This can be really frustrating for these children. I'm really glad that Lotte got both sides at the same time, so we don't have that problem. But, realize that the additional benefit of a second CI is definitely there and I feel it is more than often suggested in articles and by the medical professionals.
BUT it is still small compared to the benefit of the first CI. THAT benefit is huge.


Hear Again said...

Question in AllDeaf:
Does bilateral hearing with CIs make a significant difference in quiet situations such as home ?

In my case (being totally blind), I think they do. With two CIs, I can hear environmental sounds more clearly than I can with one CI. With one CI, sounds are "tinny" and "distant." With two CIs, environmental sounds are much easier to hear because they have a fuller, richer quality to them and sound closer to me in proximity than they do when I'm only wearing one CI. For example, while I'm able to hear a knock at the door with one CI, I can hear it much easier with two CIs -- especially if I have the TV or radio playing in the background. I'm also able to hear the fire alarm outside my apartment much easier with two CIs vs. one. If my CI isn't facing the direction from where a sound is coming from, I can't hear it as well (and sometimes I don't hear it at all). With bilateral CIs, I don't have to worry about where a sound is coming from since I'm able to hear on both sides. Granted, there are unilateral CI users who don't have problems with sound localization or environmental sounds sounding "distant," but I'm one who does. (I've been told my blindness is partly responsible for that since I can't look for the source of a sound.) I've always had bilateral hearing (even though one ear was poorer than the other), so it's something I've become used to. When the HA I wore in my nonimplanted ear no longer provided any benefit, it clearly had a negative impact on my ability to localize sound and travel safely. Once my second CI was activated, the benefits I received were immediately apparent.

Hear Again said...

Means u can locate the source of the sound? With my HAs, I am unable to do that.

Yes I can. However, prior to receiving my CIs, I couldn't localize sound because I couldn't hear from a distance. Now I have no difficulty with sound localization or identifying environmental sounds from a distance.

Hear Again said...

Now that I'm able to hear all kinds of environmental sounds, I feel much safer (especially when traveling outdoors) and it makes me wonder how I was able to travel with my guide dog without being able to see or hear. Yikes! Totally deafblind people can travel independently, but now that I'm able to hear, I've found that it has made a considerable difference in my overall comfort level when traveling.

(Some) Milestones

  • 2013-08: Grade 6
  • 2012-08: Grade 5
  • 2011-08: Grade 4
  • 2011-03: BTE's on the ear
  • 2010-08: Grade 3
  • 2009-08: Grade 2
  • 2008-08: Mainstream School (6y. old)
  • 2006-10: All-hearing Kindergarten (4y. old)
  • 2004-11-22: CI activated (27 m. old)
  • 2004-10-04: Bi-lateral CI (26 m. old)
  • 2003-08: Deaf/HOH/CI Pre-school/"DEAF" Kindergarten (12m. old)
  • 2003-07: HA's fitted (11 m. old)
  • 2003-06: Diagnosed deaf. Start sign-language (10m. old)
  • 2002-11: Suspicion loss of hearing (4 m. old)
  • 2002-08: Born - A fierce LION
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