Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Adding Allergies to Ear Problems

Although it has been 24 years since my first ear surgery for Cholesteatoma, I will have random ear issues for the rest of my life. That is just the way it works when the surgery affects my balance, the shape of my ear canal, my hearing and even how and if my ear drains on its own.

Every spring I get the irritating allergies so many people I know also get. I'll wake up with the sniffles for sure, which are then sometimes accompanied with a scratchy throat and/or headache...Absolutely no fun. One of my most irritating symptoms of seasonal allergies is when my ears feel plugged up, then drain, then plug up, over and over. I should own stock in Q-Tips!

One help for me has always been Sudafed. I have been a fan for years, and it really helps me feel better within a couple of hours of taking it. If I have a headache, my go-to medicine has always been Advil. And cough drops or hot green tea helps with the scratchy throat.

I'm lucky in that my allergies are only seasonal, and really the worst for just a couple weeks each spring. Yet it is just so difficult to think about how infrequent they are when you are in the midst of the sniffling, sneezing and stuffiness... if I could fast-forward two weeks from now I would!



Note: This blog is intended to educate readers about cholesteatoma by explaining how it has impacted my life. Any questions can be directed to me at any time!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Such an Adorable Story

I just had to share this super cute story I heard about!
http://www.lifewithdogs.tv/2013/04/abused-deaf-dog-finds-loving-home-with-deaf-boy/

and while I was looking for it...I came across this article/video too, which is a couple years old, but super sweet too!
http://www.kmtv.com/news/local/168861806.html


Isn't it amazing how good can come from challenges!!!?


Note: This blog is intended to educate readers about cholesteatoma by explaining how it has impacted my life. Any questions can be directed to me at any time!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Additional information/Links about Cholesteatoma

When I first started this blog a few years ago, I was having great difficulty finding information about cholesteatoma. I did a google search today and found a few links that might be helpful for those who are looking for additional information.

This site has recent blog posts from parents with children currently in the midst of a cholesteatoma diagnosis and also has som interesting medical information:
http://www.bornwithcholesteatoma.net/latest-posts/


Another site I like is:
http://messageboards.cholesteatoma.net/index.php


On Facebook, I have been able to find:
https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Cholesteatoma/110614972323215?fref=ts

https://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/cholesteatoma/?fref=ts

https://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/groups/72319977626/?fref=ts

https://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/groups/163699083769882/?fref=ts


I have to admit, the abovesix links all lead to pages that I wouldn't have been able to find in year's past. I am so glad that times have changed and social media/internet websites are making finding this information easier.

Note: This blog is intended to educate readers about cholesteatoma by explaining how it has impacted my life. Any questions can be directed to me at any time!

Monday, March 11, 2013

I'm Baaaaack!

After taking a hiatus from this blog, it is being revived! The irony is that I stopped posting when I started back at college to get my Master's Degree and now I am reviving the blog because of one of my school assignments! I am glad to be back and ready to get down to business!

I started this blog nearly three years ago, mostly because I was finding it difficult to find information about cholesteatoma. And if I was having difficulty, I figured many other people had questions. Being diagnosed with a disease that you've never heard of before is frightening, so it makes you feel better when you can read about other people who also have it. My hope is that by reading these blog entries, you can learn more about this fairly rare ear disease and how, even though it can be complicated and irritating and affect certain parts of your life, it doesn't have to CONTROL your life!

Look for me to post a few times a week about various cholesteatoma-related items, and please feel free to comment a little bit about yourself. This time round, I'd like to see more interaction in this blog so we can become a community that helps each other! I will also begin talking about other blogs to gain awareness for others posting about their similar experiences. Join me as we figure out this journey together of how to LIVE, regardless of cholesteotoma!

Note: This blog is intended to educate readers about cholesteatoma by explaining how it has impacted my life. Any questions can be directed to me at any time!

Monday, August 9, 2010

How to Better Communicate with a Person Who is Hard of Hearing

I was reading my regular cholesteotoma group page on Yahoo, and one of the people posted the following info on how to best converse with a deaf or hard of hearing person. I love these tips and thought they were worth passing on.


TIPS for COMMUNICATING WITH SOMEONE WHO IS HARD of HEARING or ORAL DEAF

Get the person's attention first

Face the person; have light on your face

Speak up, but do not shout

Speak slowly and clearly, but do not overemphasize

Cut out background noise by turning off TV or radio

Don't hide your mouth with your hand or an object

Rephrase rather than repeat a misunderstood sentence

Write important information to be sure it is understood

Have the person repeat vital facts to be sure they are correct

a.b.c.
Advocates for Better Communication
50 Broadway, 6th floor, New York, NY 10004
917-305-7809 Voice 917-305-7999 TTY 917-305-7818 Fax www.chchearing.org URL


Note: This blog is intended to educate readers about cholesteatoma by explaining how it has impacted my life. Any questions can be directed to me at any time!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Cholesteatoma and Airplane Travel

I recently went on a trip to Mexico for a couple weeks. As I've had more ear surgeries I am more and more prone to motion sickness, so I got a prescription from my ear doctor for Transderm Scop, which is a patch I put behind my ear a few hours before an airplane flight. The medicine works wonderfully in preventing motion sickness, but has some annoying side affects: a VERY dry mouth, drowsiness and sometimes blurred vision. I need to put the patch behind my ear about four hours before take-off, and a few hours after take-off is when I start to get the driest throat in the world--it's so dry that I need to always suck on hard candy or a cough drop. I make sure to ALWAYS bring along a bottle of water, but in spite of all I try, my throat is aching. I've just gotten used to be uncomfortable because I would rather have this symptom than get motion sickness.

Well, on this last trip, the flight to Mexico went really well, and besides the sore throat, which I totally prepared for and expected anyway, it was a pretty smooth ride. Then for the ride home, I needed to get up really early in the morning to catch the flight, and slept really poorly that night before, so I just felt like "blah" when I put the patch on in the a.m. Then, it was a full day of travel when you take into consideration all the time needed at the airport prior to take-off, customs when we reached the United States, and then another flight to our home state.

Maybe it was just because I was excited to get home that it seemed like the trip took FOREVER, but I noticed that because I had less patience, it seemed like my irritating patch side effects were even more irritating. Sometimes I wonder if I should just try the next flight I take without the medicine?

Noooo! The fear of getting sick is far too great to take the chance! Instead, I will continue to prepare by bringing plenty of throat lozenges, bottles of water, and try to get a better night's sleep the night before take-off. It is simply the price I pay as someone who is prone to getting sick on airplane flights. Much better to do the preparation and go anyway than to not go at all right?

Note: This blog is intended to educate readers about cholesteatoma by explaining how it has impacted my life. Any questions can be directed to me at any time!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Online Groups So Helpful

I am a member of a cholesteatoma group on the Internet and receive e-mails everytime someone posts something. I feel better knowing that everything I have gone through can actually allow me to help others better understand cholesteatoma, and hopefully make them feel better about their situation.

One thing I'm noticing a lot on this group is that many parents are asking questions about ear doctors for their kids' cholesteatoma surgeries. This is obviously a HUGE deal for a parent to have their child diagnosed with a disease that has to be removed and may cause their child some pain, dizziness, hearing loss, nerve damage, etc.

What I think is so cool is that these parents can post questions to the group about what doctors others may know about in their area of the country and get instant referrals. It must be so comforting to them to be able to talk to others. It is a great example of the wonders of technology!

Note: This blog is intended to educate readers about cholesteatoma by explaining how it has impacted my life. Any questions can be directed to me at any time!