Alan’s time in the Military:
I joined the army in 1961. My corps was Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, REME, our job, you may say, was in the background, workshops, always keeping the army on the move. This covered all corps, regiments and units.
We were solders first and tradesmen second, so completed full military training both on and off the firing ranges. Our day-to-day work consisted of repair and maintenance, within the workshop buildings, always a noisy environment, machine shops, metalsmiths and testing bays for example. On some occasions I would notice a ‘ringing’ sound for a short time afterwards.When not in the workshop we would repair in situ on the vehicle or plant, sometimes being the worst option, if involving large diesel engines located within the cab area.
REME would repair and test everything electrical and mechanical from a water pump, tank, tank transporter through to a helicopter. If the army used it we repaired it. Following my service, and more so in later years, I found myself unable to hear conversations clearly, often asking people to repeat something, sometimes more than once.
How Alan Struggled day to day with his hearing:
If more than one person is in the conversation, I would get confused who was saying what, everything blended into one and if there was any background noise, music or traffic, I was unable to join in, so would find myself staying away.
On a one to one I was able to get by, a type of lip reading to a certain degree. When all this was going on and then silence, I would find myself with Tinnitus. Television, I required the volume up high but still found it difficult at times, especially with background noise etc.
Alan was referred to Mr Paul Gurney at Essex Hearing Aids Ltd, where he had an assessment and recommendation of hearing aids. Paul recommended the Phonak Audeo P90 aids, Alan audiogram shows a bliateral mild-moderate sensorineural hearing loss, this type of hearing loss is typically associated with difficulty in complex listening environments in which there are competing background noises. Softly spoken speakers and conversations over a distance will be difficult for a person with this hearing loss, especially if they are unable to see the speakers face. The preferred volume of the television or radio for a person with this type of loss, is too loud for normal hearing individuals and conversation over the phone will be very difficult due to lack of visual cues.
The Phonak Audeo P90 aids will provide Alan with a clear and rich sound, they will enable Alan to participate in conversations in many environments with less frustration about the situation he may find himself in.
Now everything is so clear, the hearing aids adjust to different situations, plus you are able to fine tune if required. Veterans Hearing Foundations have been outstanding, my main contact being Chloe Johnston, whenever I made contact, I received a warm welcome and a full update on my case.
Paul Gurney, Essex Hearing Aids, Ltd. has been very helpful and already made a follow-up call to see how I was getting on. He adjusted a few settings making the aids even better. It’s a pity VHF have found themselves with the job RBL left behind, but they are doing a great job, we all appreciate their hard work. Thank you.
The UK Veterans Hearing Foundation would like to show gratitude to the Veterans Foundation (Veterans Lottery) for exceptional funding that has allowed us to improve Mr Jones life.
Alan will now go on to receive support from the Charity and his audiologist Mr Paul Gurney at Essex Hearing Aids Ltd.