KittyLiter Posted May 17 Share Posted May 17 I just got back form an awesome cruise to Alaska. I am deaf with Cochlear Implants. The CIs generally serve me well in most situations but they are not a replacement for normal hearing. I still struggle in noisy environments and with understanding people with accents other than my own. My physical ears are almost totally dead and I receive all my audio input through a magnet on the sides of my head which feeds sound directly to my auditory nerves via electrodes in my cochlea. First let me tell what went well and what they got right. Although I notified them in advance, there was a little confusion when I first boarded. I had requested a "deaf kit" installed in my cabin. It alerted me with flashing lights and a bed vibrator if the phone rang or if anyone knocked or entered my cabin. It probably would have also worked had there been an actual emergency. The tech that installed it checked on me periodically to make sure I was satisfied and I was. The other thing that worked were the captions automatically being shown at the onboard movie theater. It was appreciated. Now let me suggest major areas that can be improved based on my experience. In the theater they need receivers with an audio jack. I brought my own cable and covers so I could plug into a receiver and get the show delivered directly to my CI. This was especially important for the educational lectures provided on the places we would be going and some of the relevant history. All they had were the receivers you stick in your ears (remember my physical ears are useless) that can be used for mild to moderate hearing loss. CIs are becoming more commonplace and so audio jack access would go a long way to helping people like me. Another issue was the announcement system and the fact I could not understand anything over the speakers (combo of noise and accents). There needs to be a way to convey that information visually, at least for important announcements like safety or changes in schedule or meeting places. They passed a lot of info verbally through the overhead speakers but to me it sounded like the adult voices in the Peanuts cartoons (wah-wah-wah). For the most part the ship's staff and crew were very patient when I asked them to repeat themselves or when I needed to ask someone else what was said. In spite of the challenges I had an awesome trip and lifetime memories. 1 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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