Better Hearing Consumer

Feb. 06, 2012

Gratitude for Yesterday’s People with Hearing Loss

Gael Hannan
There’s never been a better time to have hearing loss. The stigma of hearing loss is disappearing.  Technology has given us an unprecedented, and undreamed, level of access that will only continue to improve. Cochlear implants have transformed lives and hearing aids are efficient things of beauty. Sure, we have a long way to go in all of these areas, but
Jan. 31, 2012

Pillow Talk for People with Hearing Loss

Gael Hannan
When the lights go out, so does the conversation. (I’ll say right now that this blog does NOT refer to any intimate practices beyond speaking, whispering or the translation of a verbal message. If you’re looking for anything more titillating, you’re on the wrong site.) A fundamental truism for people with hearing loss: the better the lighting and the lower
Jan. 24, 2012

Reaching Out to a HOH: The Power of Connecting with Others

Gael Hannan
Even though I’m still relatively young, I like looking back at  significant events in my life. Some are pretty obvious – turning 18, leaving home, getting my first hearing aid, first wonderful job, meeting husband, marrying husband, birth of child at age 41. Some events only gain significance with hindsight, “Wow, THAT sure changed my life!” I came upon an unexpected
Jan. 17, 2012

Hearing on Snowshoes: A Gift of Shared Sounds

Gael Hannan
It’s mid-morning in northern Ontario, 25 below zero on the new scale, 14 below on the old. Do I want to go outside and snowshoe, or stay in and drink good coffee? In the end, I’m given no choice on this getaway, women-friends, wilderness weekend. We’re going out, girl. Get ready. Two layers of leggings, socks, boots, parka, earmuffs, scarf
Jan. 09, 2012

Reading a Pig’s Lips: The Joys of Movie Captioning

Gael Hannan
We had our drinks and our popcorn; we were at the “mooo-vies” and we were excited!  My son, 3 1/2, pumped about seeing the animated version of Tarzan, was jumping around like a chimpanzee. But with Tarzan’s first words, I thumped myself on the head. What was I thinking? That perhaps my hearing had miraculously returned so that I could
Jan. 03, 2012

Can The Web Replace My Audiologist?

Gael Hannan
It was a simple email question. What did I think about direct-to-consumer online hearing testing and hearing aid sales? My fingers hovered over the keyboard to reply, but then I lowered my hands. What did I really think about this? Not too long ago I would have answered, without hesitation, that a web service could not meet the needs of
Dec. 27, 2011

New Year’s Resolutions for Better (Hearing) Communication

Gael Hannan
On the cusp of each new year, I dedicate some time to pondering my resolutions for the coming months. After about 30 seconds, I usually come up with a catch-all pledge to “be a better person.” This year, my resolve is more specific. In 2012, my goal is to be a Better Hearing Consumer, both in name and action. The
Dec. 20, 2011

Last Minute Gifts for the HoH On Your List

Gael Hannan
If your holiday gift list includes someone with hearing loss, don’t overlook the opportunity for a spectacular, one-of-a-kind present. We – people who are hard of hearing (HoH), CI users and deaf – adore the standard presents such as gloves, clothes, bling, and trips, and are not suggesting you stop wrapping them up for us. But if you’re putting some
Dec. 13, 2011

The Tinnitus Bell Tolls

Gael Hannan
Potato (po-TAY-toe, po-TAH-toe). Tinnitus (TINN-uh-tiss, tin-EYE-tis) People who have tinnitus don’t care how it’s pronounced, unless it’s pronounced dead. As in ‘no longer exists,’  with  all the chirping, sizzling, bonging, ringing, chattering and any of the other 117 identified sounds of tinnitus disappearing, forever and ever, amen. Ah, the dream of every tinnitus sufferer – silence on demand. I have
Dec. 06, 2011

What I Would Like to Hear This Christmas

Gael Hannan
Dear Santa, How are you? I’m sure you’re busy and this is a long letter, so I’ll get to the point. I have hearing loss, which causes a few communication issues at this time of year, as you can imagine. Well, maybe you can’t imagine, because you don’t have hearing loss. So, let me tell you about my challenges and why