Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Acquired hearing loss and Tinnitus

Her hands clasped in hope for a better hearing and life
My talk in IWA led me to meet a 70 year old who struggles with sounds in her ears.....tinnitus, she struggles with her hearing , cannot hear anyone who doesn't face her nor can she hear if called from behind. She has had many tests and given hearing aids but she wasn't satisfied. Threw away her aids and has given up with the thought of ever hearing any better. She refuses to meet anyone who says testing. 
The talk gave her hope and she feels perhaps I am sent to get her some help. It does bring responsibility and humility in me. I coordinated with the SOUNDLIFE Hearing Centre and got her to come for testing and see if we could help her. As we drove down together, she wanted to tell me her story. The lady sat down and between sobs and tears she explained how hard life was without good hearing. Her hands crossed on her lap in anticipation of a better life. Her hopes high. She has been through enough testings and advises and how family would mean good and keep pushing her to get up and go see docs. She finds it overwhelming to hear sounds inside her ear. The sounds of rain drops sometimes and sometimes a continuous zzzzzz in her ears makes her go crazy. She woke up at nights to check for the rain outside since it woke her up from sleep. 
She said to me how she got fed up of people's advise. No one understands how tough life is when your hearing is affected. She stopped going to docs and has given up but inside struggles and frustrates with less hearing and internal sounds. My heart reached out as she wiped her tears. I know what's it like to have hearing problems. The acquired hearing loss isn't easy to handle. She has been desperately trying to stay connected so that she can hopefully get better life with her hearing. 
This morning we found she needs cleaning of the ears first to get better results. The hope of hearing better has made her happy and is ready to go anywhere. We go for ENT for clean up and check if ear drum is fine tomorrow. The Friday shall see us back on our 1 hour drive and chatter to audiologists. I am hoping we find some relief for her. Her misery makes me realise the struggle Prisha grew up with. But since she never heard better, she can't compare and hence has accepted whatever kind of sounds come through her hearing aids. They aren't like the natural but at least she hears and speaks. 
Blessed to get an opportunity to be giving back to the society and in return getting so much more information and love. Sometimes the biggest joys of life are hidden in giving what you have it in terms of money, time, a patient hearing or just a chatter to make someone's day.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Awareness talk in IWA Jakarta

Amazing response from the group
An active session

An amazing afternoon spent with IWA ...Indian Women's association group. It was lovely to have a very good attentive audiences who were eager to learn about my journey, hearing impairment, speech therapy and its importance, role of parents and society in helping them to be integrated and how it's possible to lead a normal life where nothing is impossible. The hard work we put in inspired many to come forward and share compliments, their feelings, the vulnerability of few who face this issue and need help and of course lots of good words that humbled me further. All this and more I owe to my guru Mrs. Alaka Hudlikar. She made me the woman of substance as they say and gave a direction and purpose to follow in life. It's always humbling to help someone who is going through those lows of life which you have overcome.  I am blessed to be able to put my one small drop in this ocean. Sharing the moments through YouTube. #agbell

I hope this brings little awareness around. 

Thursday, April 7, 2016

She learns to play music herself

     She is motivated and wants to learn anything that's possible. Having being diagnosed at 1, my motive was nothing should be left out. So started to push her in every way possible. I used to sing and that she may never do so, hurt me. But I tried to give it my best shot. Mrs. Hudlikar used to sing a few mantras and Prisha picked it up. Then I started to pat on her leg while we heard music. Soon she started to enjoy it. 
      Her dear friend in Germany Diya played the piano. She too started to get inspired. She taught her few lines and Prisha loved it. Moved to Jakarta and my neighbor gave us the Yamaha. I kept it in the room for her to get inspired. A few words of motivation and her love for music made her search for her own ways. And the best part is .... She is just trained through AVT and wears hearing aids!! Early intervention, good speech therapy after good hearing aids can make life for the deaf so easy. 
      She surprised me with this. I was totally taken aback. I need to find a good teacher now for her. This also de stressed her as she had friendship issues at school. I am so happy that she learnt it by herself. We have to now work around it. Keeping fingers crossed. Meanwhile I am blessed to have her in my life. Link to her music. 

Friday, April 1, 2016

Fungus in ear

     Prisha had a cold and was around long enough for her ears to be affected. Her left ear is always the one that is affected. She started complaining of pain and we looked in and except wax we found nothing. Then one day she felt it wet inside. On cleaning with a ear bud we found wet stuff on it. I knew it was that time again we made a visit to the ENT. 
    Getting an appointment and making it there isn't easy here with so many odds to work around. We made it to her finally and what we found inside wasn't exciting. Her ear had wet wax and once she washed her ear out, we found white spots of thick fungus all the way till the ear drum! Except a sigh and a grateful thought that we came to see the doctor, we could do nothing. She washed hr ear, sprayed a medicine inside her ear, waited for it to act and cleaned up all the fungus inside. She did this twice as the layer is thick and slimy and she needed to really rub with cotton swabs on the inside ear to get it all out. Fungus takes long to get rid off. Unless you take medicines and apply ointment and finish the course, it could come back again. 
     So she is on anti fungal medicines, one capsule for oral and ointment to clean up. Her ear hurts since she cleaned it well and we are hoping she is better soon. Left with one ear to hear form she has a challenge ahead at school. Will the teachers and peers understand that she has one hearing aid and it shall affect her performance? Will they cooperate? Will they support her in lass when she hears lesser? Just can empower my girl to push herself and pray that the infection is out of her system sooner than soon. By the way......I detest colds !!!!!