auditory challenge, Hard of hearing, Hyperacusis, Tinnitus

“Marga hears too much!”

Hyperacusis, hypersensitivity to noise, is less well known than tinnitus, but there are many people who suffer more or less severely from it.
In this section “Marga hears too much” Marga van Hintumwill blog about her experiences with Hyperacusis regularly.


Eat neatly, with knife and fork
Everyone has to deal with it as a toddler. After the spoon-bowl period, the inevitable follows. Learning to eat with knife and fork. Learning to eat neatly, without messing. So that your parents can show off with you outside the door. So that as an adult you can behave as such.

Learned young and done old!
Of course I have also experienced it. The juggling with plastic cutlery. With a blunt children’s knife. But I grew up, thanks to or nevertheless.

And as an adult with hyperacusis* I am happy with that life experience. I can still do it, eat with plastic fork and knife. At first I cherished our disposable plastic cutlery sets. They are not strong. The name says it all; disposable. We used it for a long time, and very carefully. Until they broke; end of exercise. But then I discovered the composite version. Intended for outdoor holidays with minimal packing. Very strong. We have been using them for a few years now and they are doing fine!

The disposable plates are immediately replaced by Mepaline versions; also very strong. Ideal! Then we can enjoy a “home cooked dinner”. Because nowadays we never go to restaurants. Far too much noise from talking dinner guests. And of metal cutlery on porcelain or earthenware. And don’t forget the “background music”. Sometimes I want to be surprised. Then there is the home-delivered variant; often more on snacklevel than healthy, but well: sometimes that’s allowed. I don’t hear the disc of five protest.

Noiseless cooking?
Nowadays I have time enough, to cook extensively. At my ease. I do that regularly. So at my ease. Because doing something quickly in the kitchen is usually noisy. And very painful in my head. So slowly with the pan, put it gently on the sink, preferably on a cloth. No food processor or mixer, but rather a mortar. That takes longer, but works fine! Especially for the mini quantities of dishes for 2 people!

Without metal?
Cooking, well, that is inevitable from metal pans. I tried to make more use of the microwave. But when I got the “I’m done!” – beep from the microwave in my ears, I was soon done with it.

Metal pans on metal pan supports. Inescapable. With glass lids with silicone edges, that makes a difference. With wooden stirring spoons, that makes a difference. And Mepaline spoons, which you don’t hear either.

Metal hasn’t left the kitchen yet, unfortunately. So I have to be careful. The occasional, inevitable, rock-hard hit, when I accidentally bump into something with a pan. Against a rock-hard counter top, where I don’t have a cloth everywhere yet. Or the sharp stinging fall of a kitchen knife on the stone floor. Aaahhhhgrrr…

With knife and fork
But when the food is ready, when we are having dinner, then Mepaline crockery, composite cutlery are very pleasant dish mates. And good food. Not always with knife and fork. Because sometimes you are allowed to eat with your hands, haha …….

* Hyperacusis, literally “I hear too much”, is a condition in which you are hypersensitive to ordinary everyday sounds. “The volume control of ambient noise is permanently set to too high a level for a person with hyperacusis.”For me, the higher frequencies are particularly annoying and hurt my head.

Hyperacusis occurs in many forms. And often also in combination with tinnitus; as is the case with me.


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