AnonymousFebruary 22, 2022
Maggie van der BiltFebruary 22, 2022
I’ve been suffering from partial hearing loss and tinnitus in my left ear since July 2016. The partial hearing loss and tinnitus was a result of coughing profusely. However, I did not have a cold or the flu at the time which seems to be a common cause for this based on materials I’ve read on the Internet, visits to the ENT and audiologists. Hence I’m not exactly sure what the main cause of the condition is but I can tell for sure that life has been very frustrating since then to say the very least. I’m an IT professional by trade, music lover and conversationalist; so my lifestyle was affected harshly due to the high reliance on the ability to hear. After excessive reading about the triggers for tinnitus, I made further changes to an already healthy diet, tried to avoid loud noises or music, and used prescribed medications from the ENT for 6 months. There was no improvement to my condition and I was very disappointed. I’ve tried self-medication such as ginger, honey, garlic, ginkgo biloba and over-the-counter tinnitus medication. I read guides and blogs of other tinnitus sufferers to adopt their coping mechanisms of which the most effective technique is to “break the cycle” e.g. ignore the tinnitus, avoid starting the cycle of “listening” to it and go on with your life as normal. However, the tinnitus worsened such as getting “louder” and new sounds suddenly jumping into the mix such as clicking and popping in my left ear. Tinnitus had taken over my life to such an extent that I would spend an hour writing an email that would typically take me 5 minutes to write due to intensity of the tinnitus and my inability to concentrate on the task at hand.
After doing a couple of Google searches, I decided to visit an audiologist named Yolandé van der Westhuizen for an opinion to determine whether there is anything that could be done to overcome this condition and live a normal life. Yolandé explained that there is plenty to do for people with tinnitus, of which the most effective is to use a hearing aid with tinnitus therapy functions to stimulate the auditory nerve and keep it active. During my first consultation, Yolandé explained the basics of hearing aids, and introduced me to the Signia 7px model which has tinnitus therapy functionality. I’ve been using the Signia 7px with and without the tinnitus therapy for close to a month and I can truly state that it has changed my life. I now longer need to turn my head every time someone speaks to me, people don’t need to “shout” at me any longer and I can manage to follow what is going on around me in loud or noisy environments such as coffee shops and restaurants. The tinnitus therapy functionality is extremely useful in quiet environments where there are no ambient sounds to stimulate the ear. Environments with enough ambient sounds does not require me to turn on any of the tinnitus therapy at all, the mere fact that I can hear the sounds overpowers the tinnitus well enough that it doesn’t bother me.
All in all, I can still “hear” the tinnitus regardless of what environment I’m in but the game-changer was the amplification of the sounds I could no longer hear from the partial hearing loss and when necessary relying on the tinnitus therapy of the Signia 7px. I’m extremely thankful for the effort that is going into treating tinnitus and hearing loss, and I can tell for sure that the Signia 7px has changed my life since I’ve started using it.