Mom creates unique way to boost confidence in hearing-impaired children with custom hearing aids
It’s tough being a kid, growing older and needing to feel accepted by other social circles outside of your parents and family – it can be scary.
It can be even more difficult for children with adaptive needs, who sometimes find themselves standing out because of the medical devices they need to wear.
This can be increasing difficult for hearing-impaired children, who often have to wear special hearing devices on their ears or the sides of their heads that other kids don’t have.
A mom in the UK, Sarah Ivermee, didn’t think that was the case when her own 4-year-old son didn’t seem to have any issues with wearing his cochlear implants.
Her son, Freddie, had been diagnosed as “profoundly deaf in his right ear and moderately to severely deaf in his left ear” at just 3 months old, a side effect of Ivermee being diagnosed with CMV (cytomegalovirus) during her pregnancy. He had worn his implants for nearly his entire life and had never fought his parents on it.
She quickly learned that other children didn’t have the same acceptance for such differences, though. She met other parents who had discovered that their children were hesitant to wear their hearing aids because it made them look different from all the other kids.
Hoping to ease some of the emotional discomfort, Ivermee offered to put little nail stickers on the hearing aid of a friend’s 9-year-old daughter to decorate it a bit. And when she realized that there wasn’t a product already on the market that made kids’ hearing aids look fancy, she took it upon herself to transform the devices into fantastic superheroes and other cool designs—and a thriving, incredible business was born.
The brilliant idea turned into a company called “Lugs,” and now works for nearly every kind of hearing aid on the market. Parents can buy the “kits” that provide stickers and plastic shapes to fit on the hearing aids and cochlear implants, letting kids decorate the devices however they want.
Some of the designs are more generic, with holiday images and glittery jewels provided. But others can transform kids into actual superheroes, providing molds for everyone from The Hulk, to Batman to Black Panther and beyond. They come in all shapes for each type of implant or aid offered, making sure that every kid has an opportunity to make their hearing device look as cool as they want it to.
In order to keep her costs low, Ivermee explained in a blog post that she did nearly everything herself—building her website from scratch and finding all of the best quality products on her own to avoid extra fees. And sure enough, she’s managed to keep the cost of each kit down to about 10–12 pounds each, roughly just under $15 USD.
The response has been incredible, with dozens of hearing-impairment programs signing on to work with Ivermee and children from across the United Kingdom ordering the designs. And even for adults, the concept has taken off and people are able to turn their devices into cool and unique ways to stand out and be themselves.
It’s people like Sarah that fill a void and help people to feel a little less ‘left out’ and a little more confident. Be sure to check out the Lugs Facebook page for more info and to see how much he kids are loving their new and improved hearing aids.
Source The Epoch Times