CI Activation

stephaniep

Active Member
Hello, on Tuesday and Wed I have appts to activate my Cochlear implant. I am excited, yet in a way concerned that I've built myself up to hear again, but what if something doesn't go right? For those who have had implants before me, what happens on that first and second day when they activate the CI's?. When they get activated, can the volume be controlled like a hearing Aid? If something is unbearable can I just take the over the ear microphone and external magnet off?
 

HOH Guy

Member
Initial mapping just basic setting. Loudness & Comfort Levels. You receive any accessories you have selected. Cochlear Corps if you have that brand has a downloadable phone apt. for processor control. Be prepared for people to sound like Robocop or Darth Vader at first.
 

x1heavy

Active Member
Don't be nervous. In the first part what you get will be new to your brain, eventually you will sort it out rather automatically as both your brain and your processor learns over time.

Keep in mind you have technology that was not availible years ago at any price today in your smart phone and so on for that CI. I dont use it myself but I very well remember the day when they stuck hearing aids into me. Had to dig me out from under a chair or table to do it. Everything was fine until they said come here.

Nope! lolz.
 

stephaniep

Active Member
Thanks HOH Guy and x1heavy, I was warned about normal voices being different in the beginning. I read a couple of negative posts where it didn't work out for the person and that is when doubt crept in, but now I'm figuring if God brought me this far, I'm sure he didn't bring me this far for failure? I adjusted to hearing Aids quickly and hope I will do the same for the implant I'm still a little itchy and tender in the magnet under the skin area but maybe that is normal? It's really amazing what they can do now to put me ( us ) together again?
 

LoveBlue

Well-Known Member
Each person is different. I was a lucky one who was able to understand speech right away - not perfect, but could understand many words. Voices with my first implant sounded like Darth Vadar. With my other ear they sounded like they were on helium. But both adjusted quickly - maybe a week?

In the beginning they will set the processor to a comfortable level for you - based on your feedback has they play beeps of the different frequencies. 4 of 5 "programs", if you have Advanced Bionics, will be set to increased volumes and YOU will decide when you feel the need to increase it - your brain will crave more volume as it adjusts. This will probably take a week or so before they switch the programs to actual programs. And, yes, you can still adjust the volume. Mine can be adjusted 10 clicks up or 10 clicks down.

I remember with my first one the water running out of my kitchen faucet produced beeps/static (remember, the implant is electrodes) because my brain did not know what the sound was. As soon as I told my brain that it was water running I heard water running. :)

Go to your activation with low expectations and high hopes. But don't expect failure. Yes, some people do have a rough time with CIs, but the majority do well and are glad they got them.
 

cdmeggers

Well-Known Member
Definitely go in with low expectations. If you do hear something, it will sound very different from what you're used to hearing with hearing aids. Just keep at it and let your brain make sense of everything (which does take time). Might be beeps or electronic/robotic sounds, might be nothing, might be weird sounding voices. It's different for everyone. Good luck with your activation!
 

stephaniep

Active Member
Thank you guys, all is well, or as well as can be expected. I was activated a couple days ago, my 2nd appt. At this point it is all new to me. I can hear but not clearly?. It's little sounds that I notice more, I coughed a couple times, and I kid you not, I sounded like my dog barking high pitch yet?. My husbands voice was normal at times but when he raised it, he sounded like so funny (Daffy Duck) . I don't know why I'm laughing at him, I didn't sound any better at times? Actually it was a real pleasure to hear my own voice again, even though it was foreign to me? I can hear myself talk now and quite clearly, that is a positive step forward, although I still can't make out when others talk? Today I thought a train was coming, since we live by the tracks, it was my husband,, his voice sounded like horn of a train coming. I hear rustling sounds every time I move, crackling and popping like a fire,, and the creak of my door when I open it, utensils dropping into the sink, it is the high pitch sounds that I haven't heard for years, they are uncomfortable, that I have to get use to. Some are annoying. I have to return next week for more mapping. In the meantime, I was told to practice getting use to sounds, and to voices. .
 

LoveBlue

Well-Known Member
Sounds like you've gotten off to a good start. :)

"I hear rustling sounds every time I move" Your clothes rubbing.

Have they talked about aural rehab yet?

One popular one to start off with is: angelsound.tigerspeech.com I'm revisiting this one to see if I can get my "scores" higher as I know I'm still having trouble with some phonemes.

Also, listening to an audiobook while reading the same book is a great help. Some suggest starting with children's books.

You have Advanced Bionics (AB), correct? If so, ask your audi or CICS (Cochlear Implant Consumer Specialist) about the different rehab resources available from AB.
 

stephaniep

Active Member
Thank you for the angelsound link. I think it will be really helpful once I can figure out what I'm doing? All that I have been introduced to so far is mapping, of different sounds and tones, which one is the loudest, that one kind of stressed me out because, I don't know if I was acknowledging the loudest sound or the difference in tone between the sounds which seemed the loudest. I hate to admit this, but quite a few I guessed but she said it was not a test, so not to worry? I had difficulty with high pitch sounds, like cover my ears difficulty, but a lot of good that did? Not having a very good day today, not making out as much as yesterday but I assume that is normal? Today I am not as aware of all the new tones and sounds that I heard yesterday, so don't know what I touched on the ear piece to make it sound different. I was told it will be more of the same next week to get my sounds and tones to a comfortable level for me.
I have the AB's Naida's for now, but I'm to get the updated version as soon as they become available here.
 

LoveBlue

Well-Known Member
Do you know who your AB CICS (Cochlear Implant Consumer Specialist) is? This person would be a great resource for your various questions and concerns as they work with CI users who have many experiences. Plus some CICS's have CIs themselves.

Also, if you haven't already, you should join hearingjourney.com - a community of AB CI users. Lots of good help/info there....with people more knowledgable about CIs than me. ;)
 

cdmeggers

Well-Known Member
AB has an auditory rehab app available for download on Apple and Android devices, called WordSuccess.

Definitely does not hurt to find out who your CICS person is for your area. CICS can be a great resource! I love my CICS person, she went to bat for me to make sure I got my Marvels (ok, one of them) before my insurance authorization expired. She's just also been great in general too. I can shoot her an email if I'm having an issue and need to troubleshoot with someone to figure out what the issue might be, get answers to questions I have about different things, etc.
 
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