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To Silence And Back (III).

By Lynee Schlumpf.
Copyright 2000 - 2003, Route 66 Cyber Cafe, Inc.


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I started noticing ringing in my ears and a sound that was like those big conch seashells you listen to on the seashore. It was a loud, rushing noise that was prevalent the most when all was quiet in the room. I started feeling dizzy sometimes, and I began to feel like the world was slipping away from me.

My family started living with really loud televisions and radios. They were understanding, but I know there were times they wished I could hear better. I wished so much to be able to hear my husband whisper 'I love you' before we went to sleep every night. I was afraid I would never be able to hear a classical music piece in its entirety. My condition had caused me not to be able to hear all the instruments in classical music.

I went to ENT (Ear Nose and Throat Doctor) after ENT, hoping they could tell me something more. What I did learn in all those visits to the doctor was it was suspected I had a condition called otosclerosis. This was a disease that caused extra bone growth on the bones of the inner ear. It caused the inner ear to be less flexible and less able to reflect sound. Sound becomes trapped inside.

I tried really high-tech hearing aids, but as any hearing-impaired person will tell you, hearing aids are a less than desirable solution to the problem I had. I could hear better, but the drawback was that I could hear more of things I did not want to hear. I could not stand to wear them in the car or in restaurants. All I could hear were people's forks on their plates and conversations across the room, but I could not hear my husband across the table. Hearing aids don't always differentiate sound as well as the natural inner ear mechanisms.




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