Welcome to ‘A year in the life’ where we have followed cochlear implant recipients on their journey back to a hearing world.
Cochlear implants are life changing. They were the first technology capable of restoring a human sense. Unlike hearing aids that amplify sound, cochlear implants use an electrode array implanted into the cochlea to stimulate the auditory nerve. This partnership of human physiology and technology has changed the lives of many adults who have lost their hearing.
In the words of one cochlear implant recipient, “My cochlear implant is a miracle.” It is time that everyone who needs a cochlear implant in New Zealand has access to their own miracle.
Follow Scott and Charlotte’s journey back to a hearing world.
When I started losing my hearing at 21, I missed listening to music the most. I had enjoyed going to gigs and concerts with my mates, listening to music in the car and having my playlist going in the house. All that was gone when my hearing went.
My friends and family also noticed that I wasn't hearing things too well, as I was missing the gist of conversations and getting the complete wrong end of the stick. For a long time I was in denial about how bad things were, until family and friends finally convinced me to get my hearing checked.
Losing my hearing was so hard, I didn’t notice it right away but then certain moments made me realise that I was relying more and more on lipreading to get through the day. Then when I got home from work I was exhausted.
Teaching for me was getting harder and harder. My students were always amazing and would try to speak to me while facing me but at times it was just too hard. I had to use other technology to help me when I needed it, like listening to presentations and speeches. I managed to get a Roger Pen and this technology helped me to not miss so many things that were said in meetings. Even with all this, I was looking at the end of my teaching career and that was very scary. I hated the fact that my choices were being taken away from me due to my hearing loss.