Falling Apart at the Seams


The eyes are usually the first to go.

I was fitted for my first pair of eyeglasses at age forty, and then bi-focals about ten years later. I just passed the eye test to renew my driver's license, so I guess I can put off the cataract surgery for a while.

At age seventy-seven, I had a knee replacement. I am using every tool available to assure that I keep my teeth. Now, I am on the hunt for a hearing aid(s).

Hearing loss is one of my family diseases. My father was unable to pass the physical for service in WWII due to his hearing impairment. We all learned at a young age to use our "big voices" so he could hear what we were saying. Unfortunately, that is a habit that has stuck with me over the years. I am usually the loudest one in the room.

For several years, I've been refusing to admit that my hearing was going. But recent visits with family members where I couldn't understand a thing that was being said, and attempts to hear movie dialogue (over the ridiculous music the producers think enhance the art) have frustrated me to the point that I am on the hearing aid hunt.

For some time, many of my friends have been showing off their new hearing aids. The fact that they still occasionally respond with "What did you say?" makes me wonder just how much good these tiny little instruments really provide the hearing impaired.

I have looked at the Consumer Guide recommendations for hearing aids, asked all my friends about their satisfaction with their aids and still come up confused about which route to go; over the ear, invisible in-the-ear types, re-chargeable vs. replaceable batteries, etc.To make matters worse, there are at least five hearing centers in our area, all selling different brands.

Then there is the cost of those tiny little objects. It can cost thousands of dollars and the cost is not covered by most health insurance policies. Replacement batteries are also expensive and some of them only last about ten days. The high cost is another reason to be certain that I make the best choice in selecting my hearing aid.

So, until I make a decision, I will continue to say "Ehh – what's that you said?" I expect the next gadget I'll need to keep me going is a set of false teeth; although a new hip may come first. A friend just had a pacemaker installed. She says she's good for another 100,000 miles. With all my new body parts I should be good for at least that.

Marlis describes herself as a “Gramma who loves technology and has a lot to say.” She blogs about whatever catches her interest: food, books, family and more. For AgingCare.com, she writes about the issues facing the elderly and her experiences caring for her husband, Charlie, who suffers from dementia.

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when my body gives it up i think id like my addled brain downloaded to live forevermore as an annoying computer virus . i wouldnt damage people or machines , just toss wrenches into their boxed in way of thinking .
new ways of thinking are doing the world a great service right now , imo . a simple pair of safety glasses have become bifocals with magnification built into the lower lens . what mechanic doesnt need to read an occasional bearing number or something ?
instead of hearing aids , marla , why dont we kill the annoying background noises ? i simply wont watch a movie because of the foolish mood background music . i find it demeaning .. i wont listen to tv news . 95 % hype and advertising ..
gladimhere, I was so glad to read where you find the news reporters talking too fast.... I thought it was just me.... plus the moving scroll at the bottom of the news reports zip by at a warp speed, my speed reading days are long gone.

Every couple of years my Mom [96] will want to buy a new and improved hearing aid, not understanding it is her *ears* that are the problem, not the hearing aid. She will see or read an advertisement for this brand or that brand. We keep going back to the same doctor who has given Mom numerous hearing tests and has told my Mom she's not a candidate for this type or that type. Mom get disappointed and wants to find a new ear doctor.... [sigh]
Captain, thank you for the smile... I can't stop laughing about what you said regarding downloading your brain to be an annoying computer virus :)

You are so right about noises. Why are people so noisy now a days... between the LOUD cellphone rings [my boss had his cellphone ring as crickets, then later screeching birds.... YIKES... I wanted to run screaming into the night].

I use to enjoy going to the Hallmark stores, nice quiet environment... now I am listening to one-sided cellphone conversations.

And what is it with people not able to lock their cars until they have walked 5 cars away and turn around to automatically lock their cars, that BEEP scares the daylights out of me if I am right in front of the car. All around the parking lot you hear BEEP here and BEEP there, even BEEPS when unlocking the car. Glad my vehicle is silent.

Ok, I better stop while I am ahead.... I am making too much noise here :P