Longtime readers will remember the many, MANY issues we used to have with D’s hearing.
We suspected a speech delay, learned and used ASL, confirmed he had hearing loss, went to see an ENT (Ear Nose Throat doc), D had surgery to put tubes in his ears, and we saw an improvement in his hearing and speech (pretty big improvements, after speech therapy). But tubes don’t last forever, so they fell out and the gluey fluid (ew) came back — taking his hearing with it. He had a second surgery and things got much better again.
D continues to see his ENT (who is wonderful, BTW, if you’re local and need one) every few months to monitor his ears. Sometimes they’re filled with a bit of fluid, sometimes they’re fine, but he hasn’t needed a third set of tubes and probably won’t at this point.
(Even though there are times when I swear his hearing is “off” and apparently there isn’t a problem. Darling Husband tells me this is “selective hearing.”)
This is not a post about D and his hearing.
This is about C, the one who supposedly has GREAT hearing. Or did, at least.
During D’s last visit to his ENT, I asked if he’d mind taking a quick peek at C’s ears. She hadn’t been hearing well at all for a solid few weeks and I suspected something was up. It was so bad, actually, that I could be standing in front of her, loudly and clearly saying something as she gazed up at me, and she wouldn’t hear me.
I’d keep repeating myself, more loudly and clearly, until I’d finally explode in a rage of WE DON’T SAY ‘WHAT,’ WE SAY ‘PARDON’! AUGHHHHHH!
So our wonderful ENT (who is awesome with kids — ours adore him) graciously looked at her ears. And yup, I was right. Something was wrong.
It was something different than I expected.
Are you ready for this? Seriously?
It was EAR WAX!!!
SO MUCH EAR WAX!!!
I was horrified.
Who knew this was a thing?!
Oh wait, apparently SO MANY PEOPLE KNEW. Several people in Darling Husband’s family have experienced it, which he never thought to mention to me.
I felt super embarassed, like I’d handed over a really dirty kid, but the doc assured me that there wasn’t anything I should have been doing.
He’s vehemently against putting Q-Tips in ears (which Darling Husband is addicted to doing daily, and I do about once a week) so I’m still unclear on how ears are supposed to get clean, way in there?
(Related: We saw our family doctor yesterday, to get the referral for the ENT, and he suggested leaning her back when we’re rinsing the shampoo from her hair and trying to rush water through them a bit that way. I think she’ll claw my eyes out but we’ll see. We obviously need to do something about the Wax Monster.)
So, in the end, he said there *could* be fluid behind her eardrums (like D) but her ears are such disgusting wax-y messes (my words, not his) that he can’t see the eardrums at this point EW EW EW.
Her hearing loss could be caused by fluid, but it could also just be from the nasty wax build-up plugging her heary-holes.
We are now eye-dropping olive oil into her ears every day, for two weeks or so, to soften the wax *throwing up a little* so he can suction it out when she goes back as a real patient.
Two kids, two different hearing problems.
I’d laugh if it wasn’t so gross.