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Posted on Friday, July 27, 2012

Treating Hearing Loss with Hearing Aids

Child with hat smiles after receiving hearing aids.

Hearing aids help people reconnect with their families, friends, and the world around them, and this is true of people of every age with hearing loss. It’s hard not to be moved by the joy of a child who can suddenly hear a friend's whisper, their parent’s voice, cars zooming by, and the slam of a bat hitting a ball. Yvette Pinfield’s mother had this experience as a child when she received her first hearing aids.

Hearing loss can occur at any age, but it often goes unnoticed in young children who can be dismissed or incorrectly diagnosed.

Hi, my name is Yvette Pinfield, and my mom is deaf. My mom was raised in North Florida in a city called Jacksonville. She has 2 sisters and 2 brothers, and she was the middle child. Despite her hearing deficit, my grandparents were very adamant about keeping my mother in public school. They wanted her to be able to succeed and deal with real world issues and situations.

My mom continued in public school despite the aggravating teasing from other children that didn't understand her situation. During her elementary school days my mom would go to school and then to a speech therapist. She did this gruelingly for years, because she could hardly speak and it was frustrating a lot of the time.

By the time my mom turned 8 years old my grandparents decided they wanted her to try hearing aids. Everyone was very excited because this was new medical technology, and she was pleased most of all.

I will never forget my mother's story about her first time wearing her hearing aid. It was a morning like no other she was going to be able to hear things she never could before! As they drove to the Dr's office my mom’s tummy was filled with butterflies. She bounced nervously in the car, watching the soundless world as it whizzed by.

When they arrived at the office the Dr. was delighted to see such a little trooper. Despite her excitement and nerves, she managed to hold still as they fitted the hearing aid. The first clear sounds flooded her ears. She couldn’t hold still any longer and jumped up and down. She laughed, along with her mother then gasped in surprise. It was the first time she’d heard the gentle sound of her own laughter.

She was all set to go home and experience the world. The moment she stepped out of the Dr’s office, she was overcome. Suddenly the things she’d been seeing all of these years filled her ears. She heard birds chirping for the first time and was absolutely overjoyed! Now, she couldn’t speak, but for a different reason than her hearing loss. Her throat was filled with joy.

I will never forget that story and I'm sure she never will either!

Thank you, Yvette, for sharing your mother’s wonderful story with the People Hearing Better community. Childhood hearing loss needs to be addressed as soon as possible in order to prevent damage to social and language skills. If a child is in need of hearing aids, but can't afford the funding, please check out and share the links below!

Hearing loss help
http://www.asha.org/public/coverage/p4AudFundingResources.htm#children

Hearing Aid Funding

If you'd like to learn more, see your hearing health provider. If you need help finding a hearing health provider click HERE to be connected with the largest network of trusted hearing health professionals in the nation!

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