"I started doing things I had always been afraid to do, for example learning to play the saxophone."
Tim, who credits Baha bone conduction hearing implants for saving his social life, wellbeing and potentially his 45-year marriage, says upgrading to the latest series 5 technology from Cochlear this summer has connected him further with his family and the outside world.
Tim, aged 66, switched to a Baha® 5 Power Sound Processor in each ear, with an accompanying Wireless Mini Microphone and TV Streamer, in August 2016. Since then he has been able to confidently take calls on his mobile phone, listen and play music, enjoy television wirelessly with his wife Lyn and be more relaxed socially.
Fifteen years before, Tim was fitted with the Baha Intenso™ which sorted a runny ear condition and associated hearing problem. The Intenso, for both ears, had transformed Tim from wanting to isolate himself, to embracing life. He socialised again, lost weight, was promoted in his teaching job and later uprooted to a lively retirement with his wife Lyn in a swanky flat in Bristol.
But being fitted with the Baha® 5 Power Sound Processors – which uses wireless technology and has advanced sound clarity – has taken Tim to a heightened level of enjoying his new metropolitan lifestyle. Listening to music - a shared interest with Lyn - has been a big part of this, he says.
“Lyn and I went to see a group called Darlingside before I got my new Baha technology. I just tagged along to get brownie points. Then I got my upgrade and listened to their CD and understood why she liked them so much,” he says.
Tim listens to podcasts and music streamed through his iPhone, while pottering around the flat. “I have rediscovered my music by listening through my iPhone and the mic too and at the same time I can hear people talking to me or the doorbell ring. Before I had given up because I would have the volume too high and it disturbed others.”
He can even play music with a newly-acquired electronic wind instrument without disturbing others. “It’s music at a basic level, but it is such fun,” he says.
Eating out in restaurants has become more relaxed. He can hear conversations better by clipping the mini microphone onto his companion in a one to one scenario, or putting it on a table in the centre of a group to pick up the wider sound. “It really helps me relax knowing I can hear everything going on,” he says.
A fun benefit is also people can talk to him through the microphone at some distance across the room. “If I’m at the bar and Lyn wants to change her drink order she just has to speak into the mic,” laughs Tim.
And television, something Tim also avoided before, because he didn’t want to be annoying using subtitles or put the volume up too high - has become a fun pastime.
“We watch The Great British Bake Off at our own volumes simultaneously and discuss it together all the way through. The TV streamer is the solution to the harmony of my marriage,” laughs Tim.
Taking phone calls has also become part of daily life. “Before, I was very nervous about using mobile phones. I couldn’t hear the ringtone and when I did pick the call up, the background noise got in the way,” recalls Tim. “Calls to my iPhone come straight into my Baha devices and I can hear clearly in any environment and the relief of that is extraordinary. “This kit connects you to outside people, to the world and your domestic situation. The Baha and this new technology has made me glad I’m alive.”
The information on this website is for educational purposes, and is not intended to replace medical advice. Please consult a hearing healthcare professional to diagnose or treat a hearing or health problem.