Tags: AB, Advanced Bionics, BEA, Bionic Ear, Cochlear Implants, MP3, Naida CI Q70, neptune, The future, Water Resistant
It is 3 years now since I got my AB Harmony Processor switched on! 3 YEARS! Time has flown. Those three years have been a real rollercoaster of a ride. I still wish I had never had the misfortune of losing my hearing suddenly and admittedly those days are tough. Thank fully those days are lessening and it is thanks to my CI that I have been able to lead a pretty normal life since.
So, whats been going on? I have made some really cool new friends among the CI world and had the pleasure recently to meet up with some at the BEA Annual Meeting in York last month. It was at this gathering we were able to have a proper hands on play with the new processor that AB have released. There has been a lot of talk about it in the CI world and it was really exciting to see it in the flesh and get a proper explanation from the AB pro’s as to what it can actually do!
One of the most pleasing things about it is it’s size! IT’S 40% SMALLER! I have never had a problem with the current processors size. My wife tells me I have big ears! The Naida CI is so small and lightweight that when I tried it on it didn’t feel like I had it on at all. This is fantastic for all people with smaller ears than me and that includes children. Any parents looking to get 1 or 2 CI’s for their child should really consider the Naida.
I took some pictures so you can see for yourselves what it(and it’s extras) look like.
There is plenty more to shout about this new processor so if you want any more info then just click on the pictures above or follow this LINK 🙂
Now – by using the Phonak ComPilot you will be able to connect to all your gadgets wirelessly! The Naida processor has 5 programme slot so, if you are like me and want a programme for every eventuality then this is great.
In simple terms, when wearing this ComPilot around your neck (under you clothing if you wish to hide it) you can then connect directly to any Bluetooth connected gadget. Listen to music on your smartphone and if a call comes in that is sent straight to your CI too. Connect to computers, tablets, phones, TV’s (with the Phonak TV Link) and even Sat Navs too!
So, what’s next on the horizon!!
Well the eagle eyed of you (in the CI world) may have noticed that the headpiece on the Naida is the same headpiece as you get with the Neptune CI. (See previous posts). Well, there is a very good reason for this. As I have said before…….the Neptune is the only 100% waterproof CI on the market. The clever bods at AB have linked the two CI’s (Naida and Neptune) and used the same headpiece for both. The reason for this is that it wont be long before an AQUA PACK accessory will be released to use with the Naida. This will not be some disposable bag that some other designs have but a fully water proof plastic case to fit the Nadia and protect it from the water. As the headpiece has a microphone itself and is water proof it can then be used to play in the water too!! Amazing!! I can’t say any more on this as I haven’t seen it but I can tell you its coming!
Well, if you’ve read this far…….well done and thanks!!
I’ll update more info as it comes through.
Tags: AB, Bionic Ear, CI, clear voice, Cochlear Implants, loop systems, MP3, tinnitus
Well the 2 weeks since my switch on have flown by. I’ve been so busy with work and social stuff with friends and family that I haven’t had too much time to really think about my CI progress.
The initial switch on was a bit of a disappointment as you may have already read. But in hindsight it wasn’t as bad as I thought and to be able to make out some music on my MP3 player after only 4 hours is pretty amazing. After only 2 days though the volume on my CI had dropped so much that I was really struggling with it on its own as everything I was hearing seemed like a robotic whisper. So I kept using my HA in my other ear and that seemed to boost the volume on both sides by giving me a stereo effect. I definitely was enjoying that. First time to hear something out of both sides of my head in over 10 years!! 🙂
The external unit itself is very comfortable on my ear but I was having a problem with the cable sticking out and getting it caught on clothing as well as offering something tempting for my girls to grab hold of!! I have over come this problem by wrapping the cable around my external unit which shortens the cable perfectly to attach the magnet. No more sticking out cable!! Yay!!
I went back for re-tuning and a volume increase after 7 days and boy did I need it. This time my volume was increased a huge amount and my IDR was put up from 60 to 80. (Which apparently after only 7 days is pretty good). I also got them to take off my loop setting and go with normal on setting 1, clearvoice medium and high on settings 2 & 3. The loop setting was pointless as my recognition of speech was still so poor it was a waste of a setting.
After my re-tuning I found the next few days a real struggle. Everything was so much louder and distorted that it was not fun. Gradually though after 2 to 4 days the sound has become much more comfortable and dare I say…….NORMAL!! Yay. I still find speech really tough but people are sounding less robotic and more how I remember them. My little girls however are still like little robots……but sounding like very cute little robots………most of the time anyway!!
I have been using my CI more and more without my HA since my re-tuning and it has been fine most of the time. Sounds are becoming normal. I find when I have my HA on too I get two different sounds entering my head too. Quite amusing I think at the moment. A text message on my phone comes through in two different tones!! It could be confusing I suppose but I’m riding along with it and enjoying it most of the time.
Social situations are still very tough and this is what I miss so much. The world cup is on and we are having BBQ’s round at friends houses for the games and I miss joining in the banter with my mates & slagging off the commentators because they don’t know what they are talking about. Having said that though my mates are being really good with me and not getting bothered when I say pardon or sorry, I didn’t get that!! (Until they get drunk that is and still think it helps to get closer to my ear for me to hear them rather than letting me see their faces!! No names mentioned Stu 🙂 )
I mentioned sounds are becoming more normal now. Well, I have to say they are generally. I still can’t make out the radio or the TV but other than that I reckon it’s nearly all there. I noticed a squeak on one of our doors the other day and asked my wife when that had started. ‘Months ago’ was the reply. That’s nice……..squeaky doors again!! Yay. Other sounds are the birds chirping, the owl in the evening twit twooing, indicators in the car, aeroplanes and helicopters overhead, branches rustling in the wind, cat meowing and purring………the list goes on!! In fact, when I take the CI off now and just wear the HA the sound I hear is so poor it just shows how good the CI is. I’m still frustrated by speech but I have to keep reminding myself it’s only been 2 weeks!!!
A quick mention of my tinnitus. It’s still there 😦 but hardly noticeable when I’m wearing the CI. As soon as I take the CI off it’s there straight away with that lovely washing machine sound!! Ah well, at least it’s gone most of the time. Maybe that will calm down in time too??!!
To sum it up………my hearing is loads better, I’m frustrated by speech and social situations, my girls are still robots although other people are sounding more like themselves again, environmental sounds are pretty normal now, music on my MP3 is about 70% now (compared with zero before!) and I’m going back to the hospital in 2 weeks to get re-tuned and tested again.
I’ve had my doubts about the CI but I’m definitely pleased I got it done!! Roll on the next few weeks of improvement!! 🙂