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my singing voice and hearing
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my singing voice and hearing

I don't know what the topic should be under but I've been singing since I was younger, now I'm 22 and my hearing has worsened the last few years, I can hardly hear somebody across the room so now I can't even sing because the musical notes don't seem to come out like they used to. I don't have insurance so I can't go for any hearing tests. But is it normal for someone to lose tonal quality as long with losing their hearing?
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi. I can't make everything better, but I can clear up a few points for you.  You can go in to any hearing aid center whose business is to sell hearing aids to people and get a test free of charge.  Look in the yellow pages. Call them, one by one. Pick two to three places to go, based upon your phone conversations with them, and from recommendations from any hearing impaired people that you know.  They won't charge you for the test (verify, though, by phone, before you go), but they will encourage you to go to a doctor, usually an ENT (ears, nose, and throat), because they can't legally sell you a hearing aid without that certification paperwork from a doctor.  The doctor office visit and tests will cost money.  Ask each hearing aid center if they know of a way that you can receive financial assistance or a free dr office visit.  Many states have a Deaf Commission or Hearing Loss Commision, or some such agency that helps to coordinate services for the hearing impaired.  Normally, the worse your hearing, the more assistance available to you.  Are you employed?  Are you looking for work, but the hearing problem is a deal breaker for employers?  Are you employed and need the hearing aids in order to keep your job or to get a promotion?  Are you employed but worried that your employer may let you go because you've made mistakes due to misunderstanding what has been said?  Check out the Vocational Rehabilitation office nearest you.  They will often provide hearing aid assistance, including the dr. visit expenses, if  you meet their criteria, some of which I covered in the questions I asked of you.  Hearing loss is a subtle thing.  You get used to it.  You learn to compensate and lip read, or just isolate yourself.  You do your ability to hear twenty years from now a great disservice if you don't use hearing aids in each ear that has loss.  If you don't stimulate the remaining nerve sensitivity that you have with a hearing aid, the ability to use what hearing you COULD have with hearing aids will just dry up.  I'm trying to explain this in terms that you'll understand, but these are my words and examples, not the words of someone trained in the field.  My only training for this came from the school of hard knocks.  Have you ever bought a car on time payments?  Do you plan to do so at any time in your life?  If you can't get financial assistance from Voc Rehab or your state hearing agency, then you need to make arrangements to get the hearing aids that you need with time payments.  Your hearing is far more important than a car.  When you get them, your life will change.  If you can't hear across the room, and you're talking about a room size typical of most homes, then you probably have more loss than you have imagined.  As far as singing goes, welcome to our world!  I absolutely love karaoke, and if I get started on the right note, do a fair job, but if I don't get started on the right note, the whole song will be flat!  Ewwwwwww.  Horrible, but blessedly, I can't hear how bad it is!  I have a friend go with me and nod yes or shake no right after my first note.  If it's a shake, I just sort of smile ruefully, shrug my shoulders, shake my head, and go sit down.  If I start a karaoke night like that, I just stay seated, because that's how it's going to be, no matter how late I stay.  But, if I begin the night by starting on the right note, I usually have an ok (sometimes really good!) night, judging by my friend, who (I think) has always told me the truth.  It only flusters me more to have someone come up beside me and try to sing me into the right key.  Might work for some who are hearing impaired, but not for me.  Incidentally, I wear the strongest hearing aids available, behind the ear, but have learned that I must remove them before going into the karaoke place.  Why?  Well, even though I have static filters on my aids, the noise in a karaoke bar is unbearably loud with hearing aids.  That on-rush of noise sort of destroys my abililty (such as it is) to find notes,  So I remove them before entering, and find the place where the music has the least distortion, or sounds best, to me.  That's the spot where I'll stand when I sing.  I only go to karaoke in places where people go to have the fun of singing and are very forgiving if you make a bobble.  I avoid the places where the audience and other singers are highly competitive and judgmental, preferring, instead, a place where everyone feels welcome and free to sing, whether doing a "great job," or not.  Please don't continue to exist in your ever-narrowing world of silence.  I would have less loss now if I had started wearing hearing aids earlier.  It's very detrimental if you need two and wear only one, but I didn't know that until too late.  Please learn from my mistake.  If both ears need an aid, and you wear only one, the one that needs the aid sort of gives up and lets the other ear with the aid do all the work.  So the aid-less ear workings just sort of fizzle out.  Again, this is my two-cent explanation, not that of a hearing professional.  Please, don't waste any more time without hearing aids.  You must keep them dry.  If the seller doesn't throw in an electric dryer for them with your purchase price, go ahead and pay for it yourself.  While you sleep, it removes any moisture.  See what your dr/audiologist say, but I've worn both analog and digital, and I think that the digital are far, far superior, although that may be because my loss is so great.  Two more points:  Dogs and cats LOVE hearing aid molds, and when they eat them, they'll eat the business part of your hearing aids, since they're attached.  No matter how tired you are, remove the aids, clean them as you're instructed to do, and put them in the dryer (NOT a clothes dryer, microwave, or oven!), and make sure the dryer can't be reached by your pet.  Find out how you can get insurance for your aids, as good ones aren't cheap.  My last pair, supposedly with $200 off, still cost over $6000.00.  Don't be discouraged by the price.  There are cheaper ones available, your loss is definitely not as bad as mine, and your Voc Rehab or state agency may provide one or even both aids at no cost to you.  Many years ago, they also helped me to get the job I now have through the handicapped hearing program.  You might want to see if your state has that program.  If you have ANY microphone feedback, keep insisting on a mold re-make until there is no feedback.  The proper fit of the molds is absolutely crucial to being happy with your aids.  Lots of luck to you.  Please tell us when you get your aids, and how much they've changed your life.
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Avatar_n_tn
Holly Crud, there is too much misinformation in the above post, that I did not even bother reading the intire post. For example  "....because they can't legally sell you a hearing aid without that certification paperwork from a doctor."  Sure they can, if thier customer is over the age of 18, the customer signs a waiver and poof the hearing aid can be sold. No secret there...

To the OP

IT IS in no shape or form normal to be losing your hearing at such an age. You need to see a physician and an AUDIOLOGIST (not some hearing aid dealer with ZERO formal training regarding the auditory mechanism)

I don't care if their "services" are free....  I'm hungy, but I am not going to go out side and eat dirt because it is free.

AuD ccc-a
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Avatar_f_tn
I stand by everything I wrote in my first comment, based upon almost 30 yrs of wearing hearing aids, and having seen supposed professionals for almost 40 yrs.  I did not lie, so there is no misinformation involved, and can't imagine how my comments could be so misconstrued.  Definitely, waivers can be signed to nullify regulation provisions, but in dealing with 13 dealers in 3 states, every single one urged me to go to an ENT, and every single one required physician documentation before proceeding.

You need a starting point, and hearing aid store personnel are just that: a starting point.  They hear from many satsified and dissatisfied patients of ENT's and audiologists.  They know the names of those with reputations for being easy to work with and making your difficult situation just a little smoother, and they know the names of the arrogant, disdainful supposed professionals who further aggravate your situation.  That's why I suggested calling and eliminating down to two or three, so you will have varying input from which to decide what to do.  Those employees, on the whole, are more courteous than the ENT's and audiologists and their staffs, and are more willing to impart information because they want you to come back to them.  The ENT's and audiologists frequently have given me the impression that they don't want to be bothered, and the visit, for which I am paying, is an intrusion upon their time.  Since money is apparently an issue, you need to learn of any assistance that may be available to you.  If there's a way for you to receive financial assistance from a service organization, they'll likely know, and can also give you phone numbers and contact names for your state's hearing commission and for Voc Rehab, and payment plan information.  No ENT, nor audiologist, ever gave me any of that information, although I've seen more than a dozen ENT's, and five audiologists.  Neither ever told me of the further damage I was permitting to happen by wearing a hearing aid in only one ear, either, although I have now discussed it with them after initially learning that info from hearing aid sales personnel.

You definitely do need the services of both an ENT and audiologist before thinking about purchasing aids.  Your condition is an unknown until you test with them and learn your options.  I did not specifically mention an audiologist because each audiologist I've seen has been in conjuction with an ENT visit.  It is a good idea to be sure that the ENT you decide upon has an audiologist on premises.  As I stated in the first comment, hearing aid sales personnel can point you in the right direction if financial assistance is available for ENT/audiologist visits in your state.

Read through the threads to possibly get ideas as to what you'll do next, but please see an ENT soon.  Get back with us so we find out what you learn.  Good luck to you.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have eaten every day of my life, that does not make me a chef. I speak English but that in no way shape or form qualifies me to be an English instructorl. In short, just because you have a hearing loss, does not qualify you as an expert in the auditory process, and all things within.

Regarding you were never told about the freebies:  Open a phone book, no great mystery there.

The list could go on, but obviosly you are another "I know better than you," casses that we in this field see on a daily basis. Another dead give away, statement made by you...."My hearing loss is worse than yours...."   Folks, we see this very frequent in the hearing impaired crowd. This activity seems very specific to folks with a hearing impairment. You do not see blind people argue over who is more blind or people with down syndrome argue who has the worst impairment etc.

Seems strange to me, but then again, I guess I am probably not qualified to give advice in this area...   I can hear.

AuD. ccc-a
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