June 6, 2010

Dr Mom Otoscopes

A down side to hearing aids is that the ears are blocked up for a significant portion of every day. Not only does ear wax accumulate, but the lack of constant air circulation can contribute to ear infections similar to swimmer's ear. As Hadley has taken over more of the daily care of her ears, doing a better job some days than others, she's developed more of these infections.

Last year I bought an otoscope to use at home. After years of audiologists letting me take a peek inside Hadley's ears, I thought it might be useful to have one to keep handy. After a little research, I purchased a Dr Mom otoscope from Amazon. Following their instructions, I regularly looked at Hadley's ears in order to get a sense of what her healthy ear drums looked like. What a difference it makes to have a scope at home! This has become especially helpful when Hadley complains of ear pain and I can let her know if it's soreness from a scratch or the beginnings of an infection. Not that we could ever skip a trip to the doctor, but Hadley feels better once she knows what she is dealing with. Last week, I knew immediately that what I saw in her ear was otitis externa, which made the trip to the doctor's office extra speedy.

Yesterday, Hadley asked me to look in her ear to see if all the ear yuck (that's a technical term) was gone. Unfortunately, our trusty otoscope wasn't working, even after changing the batteries. The box mentioned a lifetime warranty, so I emailed the company. Despite it being a Saturday, I received a response within a few hours. After confirming that the scope had, indeed, malfunctioned, replacement parts were on their way. The scope should be up and working again by the end of the week. If you've ever considered having an otoscope at home, go check it out.

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