Deaf Teen Hears Underwater for the First Time!

What is it like to not hear splashing of water when swimming or not be able to participate fully in Marco Polo with your friends at a pool party?  Imagine hearing only silence.  For Rachel, a 12 year old bilateral cochlear implant recipient and JHBI patient, situations such as these could not be experienced or fully enjoyed.

Rachel lost her hearing completely at age 5 years and quickly received a cochlear implant to each ear. Since her surgeries, Rachel uses her cochlear implant external sound processors to hear again. She has excelled in school and has even learned to play the violin.  Rachel’s original sound processors were water resistant but not waterproof, and she could not use them while swimming or bathing and could not hear to communicate in these situations.

In March 2012, Rachel’s cochlear implant manufacturer, Advanced Bionics, released the first completely waterproof sound processor, the Neptune.  When Rachel and her family learned of this new processor option, she immediately “had to have it”.  After the Neptune was fit to her right ear, she immediately raced home and went swimming in her back yard.

Share with Rachel and her parents as she uses her new external cochlear implant Neptuneprocessor to enjoy swimming and hearing underwater for the first time.

 

The Bionic Ear Association is sponsoring an event in our area on December 8, 2012. Click here if you’re interested in trying or learning more about the Neptune processor while enjoying a guided boat tour of the St. Johns River!