My mother is 94, completely deaf, and has mild dementia. She doesn't talk so much as she has a very loud high-pitched screech. As she ages and the dementia progresses, I am unable to orient her to lower her voice. Due to her age and overall health condition, we have decided not to have any more surgeries and unnecessary interventions. I live with her in her home 24/7/365. We have nurse aides who come in 5 days a week to help me with her bathing. laundry, and other household chores and to give me some "down" time for shopping and my own personal activities. She isn't too hard to care for so I don't think she is ready to go to a nursing facility at this point in her life. The problem isn't HER problems, as it is MY problem dealing with her.
My big problem is that she "talks" too loud, or rather I should say, she "screeches" too loud. The other day I was bending down to put on her leg brace and she screeched directly into my left ear," I love you so much, and I don't know how I would manage without you." It was a very nice message but I was left reeling with ear pain and a near migraine headache for the rest of the day. I am beginning to suffer from tinnitus and hyper-acoustic bouts that total silence drive me crazy and I can't sleep with out some white noise.
I feel that if this situation continues, she will make me deaf. I have tried ear plugs but they seem to dampen down all noises. I still need to hear noises in the house. (She has left the water running in the bathroom with a wash cloth in the sink and I didn't hear it until I noticed the flood.) I need to be able to communicate with her and I also want to be able to live a reasonably normal life.
I went to the local electronic store to see if there was a device to dampen down her high pitched screechy voice and yet allow me to listen to the TV and the other noises about the house. All the devises that they had seemed to have were to help the hard of hearing to hear better. There are noise cancelling headphones, but they are so expensive that I'm hesitant to purchase them without a discussion about their pros and cons and to see if they are what I need.
Surely, I'm not the only person who has to live with this problem. What do you do keep your hearing and your sanity intact? Are there products out there that can filter out certain pitches and decibels without wiping out all sounds.