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Why I am grateful for hearing aid technology

It is easy to get wrapped up in our busy lives and not appreciate small things that make a big difference, such as hearing technology.

I’m 21 and have a profound hearing loss, A friend of mine recently lent me a copy of her heroine’s biography. Helen Keller, an American lady born in 1880, was left deaf and blind from an acute illness as a toddler.

The book tells a story of triumph over adversity; the struggles she faced during the 19th Century. Yet she is still portrayed as a ‘symbol of hope’ for other deaf, blind and deafblind people.

This makes me realise how far we have come; how technology has played such a huge part in the lives of so many deaf people the world over in recent years.

Also, I realise how fortunate I am to have been born into this generation. Many deaf people have been helped through either hearing aids or more recently, cochlear implants. 


The beauty of having a choice


To me, hearing technology signifies ‘choice’. As a person with a hearing loss, the disability might restrict my communication choices. With the provision of hearing aids and implants, deaf people now have more choice as to how they prefer to communicate, whether it is through using hearing technology or not.

I see hearing technology which gives people the ability to hear the gift of sound and to process it - if that’s what they want. Technology, of course, isn’t the choice for everyone. But at least, the availability widens our choice.

Luckily, we have various languages and communication choices nowadays. This means that oral communication doesn’t have to be the only way. I’m so pleased to see the media recently promoting the beauty and benefits of sign language. This will hopefully help its progression to become an equal form of communication/language.

To me, hearing aids are an integral part of my life. I’m sure that for many, the method an individual chooses can help them feel less isolated by their deafness and provides them with a lifeline to the outside world.

I’m 21 and cochlear implants weren’t available to me when I was young. I was fitted with Phonak Hearing Aids at the age of ten months, but it certainly wasn’t easy. As a toddler, I did not like to keep my hearing aids on. I used to pull them from my ears and launch them across the room. I was in an angry, frustrated frenzy as my poor confused brain couldn’t compute these alien noises. Today, I am grateful I can take part in the world which many hearing people take for granted.

As a young adult, I’m beginning to understand how hearing technology has transformed my life in so many ways. Not only can I access these sounds, but my hearing aids are clever and useful enough to allow me to listen, appreciate, enjoy and digest so many wonderful experiences which I wouldn’t be able to do otherwise.


Our generation now and the future


Witnessing the joy which many babies, children, and adults experience when their implants or hearing aids are turned on is a sight to behold. 

For many parents of this generation, facing a hearing loss diagnosis for their precious babies, hopefully having more choice will also give them more hope for a better future for their children.



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