Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Build Successful Lives- The Gift of Hearing

Yesterday, I heard about a toddler from Dallas, Texas who recently had a cochlear implant surgically placed. Izzy Baker was born with a severe hearing loss that led to her challenges with communication. She currently communicates with sign language.  A friend of mine shared this video story with me after it was shown on NBC in  my hometown of Miami, FL. It was a short segment, but it was definitely one of those feel good stories. You know the ones that just pull at your heart strings. 

It was amazing to see this precious little girl receive the gift of hearing as the audiologist (hearing specialist) activated the sound processor behind her ear for the first time. The little girl’s face lit up in amazement and she also smiled and pointed to her ear as the audiologist turned on the beeps to test her ability to hear. This sound processor looks like an external hearing aid and transmits a signal to the cochlear implant that stimulates the auditory nerve in the inner ear and allows Izzy to hear.

Now that she has received this gift of hearing, she will receive follow up care from a team of professionals to ensure that she receives the greatest benefit from her cochlear implant. The audiologist will make sure the device is programmed and fitted effectively, the speech-language pathologist will teach her to communicate orally and/or with sign language, and her parents will carry out instructions given by the team of hearing professionals.

I hope this story made you smile! Have a great day. Remember to do what you can to build successful lives through service to others! This little girl now has access to hear and communicate in new ways that would not have been possible without her cochlear implant, family, and team of hearing professionals! 

Tamara Anderson, Ed.S., CCC-SLP
Speech Language Pathologist
Education Specialist

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