An Acoustician's Experience of Wearing a Hearing Aid
For the Clarity Workshop in 2021, Barry M. Gibbs gave a talk on an acoustician's experience of wearing a hearing aid. This talk and the rest of the workshop are freely available online.
This is a personal account of the experiences of wearing a hearing aid to control Tinnitus. It is a description by a non-expert, who however, comes from a career in engineering acoustics, both as a researcher and teacher. The Tinnitus has been of long duration (45 years), is high-frequency and broad-band in character, and is confined to the right ear. With the onset of presbycusis the Tinnitus became progressively louder, again only in the right ear. On the recommendation of the NHS, a hearing aid was fitted three years ago, which, after some adjustments, suppressed the Tinnitus quite well. A year later, a purchased digital hearing aid provided more control of both the volume and frequency content. However, the use of these devices has compromised my binaural perception, which I might be able to explain, but also speech perception and classical music appreciation, which members of the audience might be able to explain.
Professor Barry M. Gibbs is Honorary Professor in the Acoustics Research Unit of the University of the Liverpool School of Architecture. His main research interest is structure-borne sound in buildings and other structures. He has been awarded about 20 major grants on this and other topics, which allowed over 25 postgraduate and postdoctoral appointments. He has authored and co-authored over 290 journal and conference papers and was founding Editor of the journal Building Acoustics, now into its third decade. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Acoustics, of the Acoustical Society of America, and of the International Institute of Acoustics and Vibration. He was President of the International Institute of Acoustics and Vibration in 2002-2004. In 2015, he received the Institute of Acoustics R W Stephens Medal. He was President of the Institute of Acoustics for the period 2018-20. As Past President, he will be Conference President of Internoise 2022, to be held in Glasgow on 21-24 August 2022.