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 Motorcycle Safety
 Aging and Disabilities
 Riding with cochlear implants
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dogdoc427
Male Standard Member
196 Posts


Milan, New York
USA

Yamaha

650+87 Honda GL1200I

Posted - 07/07/2012 :  2:08 PM                       Like
Hello all! Over the last 30 or so years I've lost my hearing. I wore hearing aides for about 10 years, up until they no longer compensated for my loss. At that point (approx. 9 months ago) I was sent to a neurosurgeon and his audiologist to determine if I was a candidate for cochlear implants. I am now considered functionally deaf even with hearing aides. I was implanted in Jan of 2012 (right ear, left to happen soon). I had ridden with hearing aides over the years and had some minor issues getting my helmet on over them but with practice all went well. NOW, with the CI things are a bit different. It (they) have a magnet that clings to the implant under the skin just above my ear and a voice processor that hangs on my ear similar to "behind the ear" aides. Any time I try and don my helmet it displaces the magnet and I'm deaf. Any pressure on the magnet once the helmet is on is either uncomfortable or displaces it. I took a ride to the local dealership to try on some other helmets to find a full face that would work for me. My thoughts at this time are to try a modular, I might be able to reach in and reposition things so I could hear but they have to order one in my size (it's on the way). I currently wear an HJC IS-16 and prefer to stay with the full face (modular is acceptable) if at all possible. Any thoughts, suggestions or advice would be appreciated

gymnast
Moderator
4267 Posts
[Mentor]


Meridian, Idaho
USA

Harley-Davidson

Sportster Sport

Posted - 07/07/2012 :  3:57 PM
You might take the new modular helmet as well as you full face helmet to your audiologist and see if he has any advice for you as to needed modifications or adaptations.
Have you tried to put on you helmet while wearing a thin silk or some-such head covering? How long (or short) is your hair?.

http://www.whitehorsegear.com/silky...helmet-liner
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rayg50
Male Moderator
2082 Posts
[Mentor]


NYC, NY
USA

Honda

Shadow Spirit 750DC

Posted - 07/07/2012 :  6:06 PM
I think gymnasts suggestion is excellent (!!!) and affordable for you to try (test). I think I will order one for myself.

My FF helmet was constantly dislodging my ear plugs. I found that when I wore my balaclava the helmet would just slide over my ears without bending the earlobe down and pulling loose the ear plugs.

It is too warm to use the balaclava so I wear my modular now. The modular has the advantage of letting me slide the helmet on from different angles rather than just the straight down of my FF. I find myself able to put it on the way most put on a swimming cap. I angle it in until it touches my earlobes. I then use my hand to tuck the ear in so that it does not bend as I pull the helmet forward and down a bit. Juggling both sides is a bit of a pain but it works (most of the time, lol).

I think I will try the helmet liner. Thanks gymnast.

BTW, for those that THINK I am putting the plugs in wrong please KNOW that I am putting them in wrong (not seated deeply enough). I just don't want to see the look on my wife's face, again, as she gets her tweezers to help me remove them.
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gymnast
Moderator
4267 Posts
[Mentor]


Meridian, Idaho
USA

Harley-Davidson

Sportster Sport

Posted - 07/07/2012 :  10:51 PM
Here is a whole passel of different under helmet caps. http://www.thefind.com/apparel/info...under-helmet
I got one after seeing football players using them. The one I got is similar to the "Pearl Izumi" skull cap.
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dogdoc427
Male Standard Member
196 Posts


Milan, New York
USA

Yamaha

650+87 Honda GL1200I

Posted - 07/08/2012 :  8:31 PM
Thank you gentlemen, for the suggestions! The thought of the skullcap has crossed my mind (I agree Ray and I appreciate the link gymnast) and I've sent an email to my audiologist to see if she has any experience with this issue. One part of the problem is where the implant is located on my skull. It sits JUST above the edge of the Styrofoam shell, the IMPORTANT part of the helmet! I may have to create a small indent in the shell to accommodate the magnet. My hearing aides were somewhat "anchored" in place with the ear molds. The Cochlear implant has nothing in the ear, just a hook on the processor that goes over the ear and magnet on a thin cable that clings to the implanted piece. My current helmet does not allow room for me to reach high enough to put it on first and then position the electronics but the modular MIGHT. When I hear from my audiologist I'll share her suggestions, if any, here.
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rayg50
Male Moderator
2082 Posts
[Mentor]


NYC, NY
USA

Honda

Shadow Spirit 750DC

Posted - 07/08/2012 :  9:38 PM
Here is a link worth checking out:

http://funnyoldlife.wordpress.com/2...ar-implants/

Later in the article mention is made of a balaclava and low profile beanie.

Edited to add this quote from a different site because the article linked to above implies that this is a recent event. This one sets the timeframe at over 2 years ago.

"In May 2010, Adam Strecker was the first person to be fitted with a helmet specially adapted for a cochlear implant. The company who designed this helmet supply cochlear implant-suitable baseball helmets and motorcycle helmets."

Here is a link to the article quoted above.

http://cochlearimplanthelp.com/jour...ties/sports/

One more link (sorry) for something you can ask your audiologist about.

http://www.advancedbionics.com/uk/e...hearbig.html


Edited by - rayg50 on 07/08/2012 10:01 PM
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dogdoc427
Male Standard Member
196 Posts


Milan, New York
USA

Yamaha

650+87 Honda GL1200I

Posted - 07/09/2012 :  5:20 PM
Thanks again Ray, and please don't apologize for all the links! They are all good information.

I heard from my audiologist, lucky lady is in Nova Scotia with her husband on their motorcycle! She mentioned donning the helmet and then putting things in place but my implant is too high on my head for me to reach with a properly fitted helmet. More research to be done on her return to the office.

Gymnast- I forgot to answer your question. Hair length is about 1/2 to 1 inch around the implant area. Generally I have my hair off the ear/ off the collar. I'm looking into a skull cap as you suggested.
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The Meromorph
Male Moderator
834 Posts
[Mentor]


White House, TN
USA

BMW

R1100RT

Posted - 07/09/2012 :  8:06 PM
If your helmet has replaceable cheek pads, you might find that replacing them with a size larger (Thinner) solves/helps your problem.
I wear a size 2XL in a Scorpion helmet, but was unable to smile while wearing it until I replaced the cheek pads with those intended for size 3XL helmet :)
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dogdoc427
Male Standard Member
196 Posts


Milan, New York
USA

Yamaha

650+87 Honda GL1200I

Posted - 07/14/2012 :  12:32 AM
OK, I have found a solution to my issue! The HJC IS-MAX BT (integrated sun shield, modular and blue tooth ready) will work with my cochlear implant in place. I have to hold it firmly to the left side of my head and "roll it on" but it works without sacrificing fit or coverage. If I dislodge the magnet it allows me to reach in from the front and reposition it fairly easily.

THIS IS NOT an endorsement for HJC or the IS-MAX! This is the modular helmet that I can afford (a little less than $200) and HJC seems to fit my skull fairly well.


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Bluecray
Male Starting Member
1 Posts


Luton, Beds
United Kingdom

Honda

NC700S

Posted - 01/24/2013 :  10:49 PM
I too have the same problem, I only managed it once by putting a full balavca on once, but it left a sore spot because of the thickness of the balavca and the external part of the cochlear implant, the coil was pressing on my head. Also if I was to have an accident if
my head got hit on that very spot the consequences are unthinkable!

I too have a flip front and as you know with these fully open there is a bit of space to put your fingers inside but I wouldn't be able to move my coil, so dogdoc how you manage to reposition yours I don't know.

I may go to a shop and try that HJC helmet.
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Thom Thumb
Advanced Member
1594 Posts
[Mentor]


Jordan, MN
USA

Harley-Davidson

Sportster XL883

Posted - 02/28/2013 :  12:43 AM
I used an open face helmet, with a full face shield. Under the helmet, I wore a simple, thin knit cap. Not the best combination for safety, but it did allow me to leave my implant on. The thin knit cap kept my implant in place as I donned or removed the helmet. A do-rag never worked as well. The newer under helmet caps most likely work better than what I was using five years ago. (And they have the added benefit of keeping the helmet clean inside.)

However, ask yourself, is the sound you're getting when you ride really useful? I eventually came to the conclusion that wearing the cochlear implant under the helmet while riding didn't provide a lot of benefit. If you're using the behind-the-ear implant it's impossible to turn the sensitivity up or down when you have a helmet on. Eventually, I just left my cochlear implant in my shirt pocket while riding. Naturally, as a deaf rider, one has to be especially alert to what's going on all around, but Dogdoc427 and Bluecray, I would guess you both rode before the cochlear implants, and have good swivels in your necks.

Stay safe.
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