Adult Ear Infection

Adult ear infections are just not fun.

Almost 8 weeks ago, I basically lost my hearing in my right ear. Attenuation was down almost 26 dB on the core frequencies between 200 Hz and 5 kHz. I could not perceive any sound above 8 kHz  or below 175 Hz. And even the sound I could perceive in the lower frequencies was significantly off pitch compared to my left ear. For the most part, I really could not perceive any external sound from the right ear and I lived in this unusual world of being physically challenged with profound hearing loss.

How would I describe the experience? In a word, terrifying. And it became very disheartening as the weeks went by and there was no real improvement in my hearing.

After church on Sunday I went out for a bike ride. A really hard ride. I was so angry and so frustrated that the infection was not clearing that I took it all out on the ride.

When I returned home, aside from completely obliterating my previous personal best time and pace, something happened.

I was carrying the bike from the road on our gravel drive when an explosive sound suddenly took place in my right ear. Sound! I could hear again. Sounds from the forest on our property. Sounds from my feet making contact with the gravel road. Sounds from my hands brushing my clothing. The infection had cleared and my hearing was finally restored.

I tested my hearing this morning and all frequencies from a low of 25 Hz to about 14 kHz were consistent in pitch and amplitude.

Very thankful that the condition has healed on its own. I had read reports that ear infections can take several months for the fluid to drain and for proper hearing to resume. I remember reading one website where someone said that you have to be patient. My wife told me that I was being taught a lesson in patience. I hope I do not have too many more lessons like this one. Stressful and exhausting.

I was able to get back to some audio work last night and early this morning. I also listened to a movie on the surround sound system. So nice to hear again.

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