It was a Queensland first when almost-one-year-old, Sage had her brand new Cochlear Nucleus 7 sound processor switched onto sound at the Hear and Say Gold Coast Centre this month!
The “N7” is the world’s first cochlear implant sound processor made to be specifically compatible with iPhones for direct streaming, as well as being the smallest and lightest behind-the-ear process currently available.
Sage has had severe to profound sensorineural hearing loss in both ears from birth. At the age of two months, Sage was fitted with hearing aids, and since then has been attending fortnightly listening and spoken language lessons with Hear and Say.
In August this year Sage’s family, together with the Hear and Say team, determined that Sage would achieve best outcomes by having two cochlear implants.
With the best speech perception currently on the market, the N7 will mean when Sage is older she’ll be able to listen to music, watch shows, and even chat with her extended family over in Brazil via FaceTime. Sage’s mum and dad, Emily and Felipe will also be able to customise Sage’s hearing from their iPhones to suit different listening environments.
Sage and her family are working with their Listening and Spoken Language specialist, Lyn on lots of new milestones. In particular, providing Sage with lots and lots and lots of verbal language models to teach her that speech sounds are meaningful. As Sage approaches her first birthday, she will learn to string together different sounds and learn that different sound combinations can mean different things. The team will also focus on expanding Sage’s receptive vocabulary – that is, teaching her the meaning of new words, such as knowing that a cow is the animal that lives on a farm and says moo! Sage’s parents are also working hard to ensure that her devices are worn as much as possible, aiming for 100% of waking hours.
A big Hear and Say congratulations to Sage and her family!