Yesterday AJ had his SIXTH & FINAL Booth Testing in the cochlear implant process. Phew :) Can you believe we've gotten through six of them?! The left ear (unaided) was tested. Results-almost identical to the right ear unaided. Response to speech at 105 dB. He's such a pro now. He didn't even try to grab the wire this time.
We were given a copy of a very nice audiogram chart (speech banana chart). It shows a lot more "sounds at different levels". His audiologist plotted his responses on this chart so we could see where he is hearing. A jack hammer was one of the items listed below 95dB. Just because its that loud to us, doesn't mean its that loud to AJ. Given his level of hearing loss, a jack hammer sounds like a whisper to him. WOW. Just incase you would like to compare-you and I hear a whisper at around 10-15dB. Please refer to our chart.
AJ received his new ear molds for his hearing aids as well. They are fire engine red...he is one cool dude!! They also gave me a "Huggie" (no not the diaper) to keep his left hearing aid on his hear. His left ear is a bit floppy (expected since his left side is weaker in general) and he has a shallow "bowl" (area where your finger goes when you plug your ears). It is really a neat device. I'll post a picture of him with his new molds soon.
I also asked why hearing aids do not benefit those with hearing loss such as AJ's. The short version: His hearing aids are very powerful now. Given that they are turned up so high, what he is hearing (environmental sounds around 75dB consistently) is really really distorted. So turning them higher would not help him reach the speech banana. He would not develop speech because the sounds would be even more distorted. Even so, we must keep having him wear his aids. We are stimulating that auditory nerve. This is all in preparation for the cochlear implant. Hopefully, this stimulation will help him to "tune into" the hearing world a bit easier and detect sounds better.
Next on the agenda: Tomorrow-Surgery Consult with AJ's surgeon....