Katie, a hairdresser and model from Ashford, Kent started to notice early signs of hearing loss at the age of 15. She struggled to hear her friends at school and complained to her mum that she sometimes felt left out of conversations. Her mum at the time put it down to her having selective hearing but over time she also started to notice that Katie wouldn't be able to hear her either.
It was then that Katie was taken to see a hearing specialist and Katie had was diagnosed with bilateral hearing loss, Katie was given her first pair of hearing aids by the NHS when she was just 18 years old. Being a fashion conscious teenager, Katie didn't want to wear hearing aids, she felt people would notice them so she didn't start wearing them until her hearing had deteriorated more at the age of 21.
Katie worked as a hairdresser in a busy hair salon. She used to find it difficult having conversations with her clients over the noise of all the hair hairdryers and radio in the salon. It was a struggle everyday that often left her feeling exhausted. After 5 years she decided to open up a salon in her house so she could control the background noise and feel more comfortable.
For 11 years Katie received her hearing aids from the NHS. She had always been happy with the service that the NHS had provided and knows she wouldn't have been able to hear without them. The NHS aids Katie wore were a few years old when a friend told her about Hidden Hearing. She had always wanted to see if going to a different hearing care provider would make a difference. Katie booked a free hearing test at her local branch and was introduced to the Audiologist who explained how the technology in the latest models of hearing aids would be able to help her.
Darren fitted Katie with the latest Oticon Opn S hearing aids and immediately she could tell they made a huge difference. Darren also explained that she could try the Oticon Opn S aids for a while and if she was struggling with them she could come back and try the Oticon Xceed product that is specifically designed for people with profound hearing loss.