There is much discussion on here about the difficulty discerning speech in noisy environments like restaurants etc. It is a frustrating problem, I know from first-hand experience. What I am wondering is if it is always related to our AN's? I have never been able to understand speech in such situations without deliberate actions to get closer, to ask people to speak up. This has been a problem for me since long before I could have had my AN and my hearing is actually good. I have > 96% speech recognition in both ears which is the highest rating my Dr gives. My good ear has some slight high frequency (above normal speech) loss and my bad ear has that plus a slight loss in low frequency (below normal speech). So even now, with the AN, my hearing should be able to understand speech in a crowd and I can't. Others around me, pretty much everybody, always, can hear speech just fine in the same places I can't.
So, what I am wondering is, maybe it is not the mechanics of the ear itself that always cause this problem. Maybe it is the way the brain processes the information? Some on here get sophisticated hearing devices and marvel at how they can now understand speech in crowded places, yet others, using the same equipment, are disappointed with the results. maybe this supports my theory that there is more to this than just the ability of the ear to mechanically convert the vibrations into data and the nerves ability to transmit the data to the brain. Most of us, afterall, have one good ear that should still be able to process the speech so we can understand it.
Anyway, reading the divergence in reviews of these devices had me recalling how I never could have a conversation in a crowd. I have been nodding my head and smiling in crowds pretending to understand conversations my whole life!