Tag Archives: single sided deafness

After over 40 years with single sided deafness, Carl Bjerke finds the right hearing solution

In 1973, a snowmobile accident changed Carl Bjerke’s life. The accident, which resulted in head trauma, left Carl with permanent hearing loss on his left side. “My hearing was never checked and I just didn’t think much of it, and simply dealt with it,” he says.

His first hearing test
In 1980, Carl joined the U.S. Army as a mechanic but never told anyone about his hearing loss. “I had to constantly ask people ‘what did you say’ over and over again,” he says. It wasn’t until 1986 that Carl had his first hearing test and was officially diagnosed with single-sided deafness. He was given a crossover hearing aid, but quickly found it was too loud, especially for his position as a mechanic. “In just a few weeks, I found that it was overloading my good side, and I never wore it again,” he explains.

Trying a bone anchored hearing system
In 2008, Carl’s audiologist suggested he try a new technology—a Bone Anchored Hearing System (BAHS). They gave him a BAHS to try on a headband. As soon as he put the processor on, he noticed a huge difference in his hearing. “I could hear things on my left side that I couldn’t hear before,” he says. Once he returned the demo processor, he began his journey to have an abutment placed for his own Ponto Bone Anchored Hearing System.

“I really researched the units that were out there and was very logical in reviewing all the facts. I looked at all the data and the Ponto 3 SuperPower was the best option for me,” he explains.

A new world emerges
In 2017, after concluding that insurance would cover the cost of his BAHS, Carl had the surgery.Three months later, Carl’s Ponto 3 SuperPower was programmed and activated. He recounts leaving his audiologist’s office that day and hearing his wife speak to him for the first time while she was standing on his left side. “I could understand her without saying ‘what or excuse me,” he says.

Today, Carl works as a quality and safety manager with Diagnostic Group LLC in Minneapolis and no longer has to go to a meeting early to find a good seat so he can hear everyone. “I was doing an audit in Florida and I could carry on a conversation with everyone. Everyone’s voices were clearer,” he says. Using his Oticon Medical Streamer he is able to connect to his phone and when listening to music he says he gets ‘the full range of music’.

To those struggling with single-sided deafness (SSD), Carl says, “There is help for people with SSD. Get your hearing checked, you might also benefit from a Ponto Bone Anchored Hearing System.”

To learn more about the latest Ponto 3 SuperPower click below:

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Ready to Upgrade Your Bone Anchored Hearing System to a Ponto Plus? A Checklist to Help You Decide

Maybe you’ve heard from those who have made the switch from a different bone anchored hearing system to a Ponto. Maybe you’ve seen the data on how the Ponto Plus offers the best Bone Anchored Hearing System (BAHS) sound quality possible, and you’ve been thinking of upgrading your Ponto for a while.

Upgrade to the Ponto PlusYou’ve been thinking about it, now what’s next?

First, it’s important that you have access to all of the information that will help you decide. Below, we’ve created a list of upgrade information that will equip you with what you need to know about leveling-up to the Ponto Plus—whether it’s from a different bone anchored hearing system, or you’re moving from an older Ponto model on up. You’ll find user stories about experiences upgrading, more about the upgrade process, Ponto product and accessory information and more. 

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Getting the Most Out of the Winter Season with A Bone Anchored Hearing System (BAHS)

The winter and holiday season is usually full of fun, family and friends. Today, we’re sharing tips collected from our community to make sure Bone Anchored Hearing System (BAHS) users get the most joy out of winter. From dealing with the noise of large group gatherings to unique winter hats, gear and gifts for family members with hearing loss, here’s what our community had to share.

In her post, “Holiday Madness, Seven Tips to Better Communication” Arlene Romoff shares a great reminder: “Realize that large social groups, especially around a large dining room table, are one of the most difficult environments for a person with a hearing loss.” Penny Feltham took to Twitter to share a great idea about reducing those unnecessary clunks that add to the noise.

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What’s the Ponto Plus? Here’s A Four Minute Video That Will Get You In The Know

There’s nothing more powerful than a concise and complete overview of a product—including bone anchored hearing systems. That’s why we put together this four minute video that offers a summary of the benefits and features of the Ponto Plus, the most powerful family of wireless sound processors.

Whether you’re just starting to learn about bone anchored hearing systems, you’re in the process of deciding which device is right for you, or you want others to understand what your Ponto Plus is, this video is a quick and easy tool.

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Ear Aid Nepal, the British Society of Audiology & Oticon Medical Help Baby Asmita Hear

This is just the kind of story we love sharing. In Nepal, a young girl born to a single mother now has the chance to grow and develop with better hearing thanks to the generosity of others and her family’s efforts to give her the best life possible.

With no ear specialists in her entire region or the funds for proper care, Asmita, born in Western Nepal without properly formed ears, faced an uphill battle.

Ear Aid Nepal and the British Society of Audiology recently shared Asmita’s story. Thanks to the volunteered efforts of Ear Aid Nepal, the International Nepal Fellowship (INF) and volunteer audiologists from the UK, Asmita was able to receive care. We were thrilled to donate two Ponto softbands to aid their efforts.

Here’s Asmita’s story.

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Hearing Loss in the Classroom

Educating teachers and children on the importance of using FM systems in the classroom came up many times at our Patient Advocacy Workshop. Here’s a great video by St. John’s Medical Center that does just that. This is a great tool that shows the difference a FM system can make for a child with hearing loss. Share it with your children and their teachers.

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College Student Cuts Through Years of Noise with Ponto Plus

Kevin Hotaling is a sophomore at Stonehill College who got his Ponto Plus on October 13, 2014. When we saw Kevin’s video, we just had to meet him. We knew you’d feel the same.

So, here’s Kevin to tell you a bit of his story:

I originally found out about Ponto through one of my mother’s coworkers. She didn’t have the Ponto, but she had a very similar bone anchored hearing aid procedure done, and she’s had results that were nothing short of stellar. I was nervous originally. Although surgery was nothing new to me, the idea of someone drilling into my skull was very unsettling. In addition to that, I hadn’t heard of any people my age who had ever gotten the procedure done. I had only ever heard of adults and small children owning the system, never a teenager. I was given the opportunity to test the device using a headband, and immediately, I noticed a massive difference in my hearing quality.

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You Asked; We Answer: What’s the difference between a Cochlear Implant and a Bone Anchored Hearing System?

We commonly get questions about the differences in various hearing solutions. It’s important to note that there are different options based on individual conditions and needs. The same solution isn’t right for everyone. While Oticon Medical currently specializes in bone anchored hearing systems, we’re here to help you navigate your options.

Today, we’re going to look at the differences between Cochlear Implants and Bone Anchored Hearing Systems. To do so, we brought in Oticon Medical’s Clinical Regional Manager and one of our top Audiologists, Alison Sabbar.

Here’s Alison:

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A Growing Community: Bone Anchored Hearing System Forums & User Groups

We’re sharing one of our greatest assets– a list of online bone anchored hearing system forums and user groups. The communities on this list have helped so many, and they’ve helped us connect with you. With so many people looking for communities of others who can help them get answers and support, we’ve now made this list public. Better yet, we’re asking you to help us add to the list and grow it even further. Read on for access and to get the full scoop on how it works.

Bone Anchored Hearing System Forums & Groups List

Click to View the List

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Amy Mackey, A Bilateral Cholesteatoma Survivor Tells Her Story

Meet Amy Mackey. Amy is a two-time survivor of cholesteatomas and a Ponto Plus and Ponto Streamer wearer. Amy is a writer, so we could think of no better way for her to share her story than her written words below. We’ll also be hosting a live online discussion with Amy on Thursday, May 1 at 1pm EST– RSVP here.

I’m a Bilateral Cholesteatoma Survivor
By Amy Mackey 

As an infant and small child I suffered from repeated ear infections. I remember my mother used to back me up against the refrigerator to give me nose drops instead of the now used ear drops. She always told me she knew when I had an ear infection; my attitude went south. Under the age of five I participated in a group study for bilateral myringotomy (tubes in both ears). From what I understand I was the only one in the control group to not outgrow my ear problems. Over my tender years I had repeated myringotomies, doses of antibiotics, ear drum lancing and occasionally my ear drums would burst on their own from the pressure of fluids.

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