man struggling with listening to loss and his mental health has thanked his listening to dogs for making him feel “10-feet tall” and fascinating him again into society.
Ian Joyce, who’s from Staffordshire, was a untimely child, which he said triggered his deafness.
He said that rising up within the Seventies introduced a number of challenges for him since “technology wasn’t very sophisticated”.
“I carried a box receiver around my neck, connected to hearing aids. Whoever wanted to speak to me would have a smaller box and a microphone”, the 51-year-old said throughout Men’s Health Awareness Month, which falls in November.
“However, the hearing aids started to cause terrible ear infections. I got a really nasty infection that hospitalised me. After this, I was told no more hearing aids.
“It was a sudden, silent shock and one which I couldn’t cope with. I’d lost the ability to communicate. I withdrew into myself and away from the world.”
Mr Joyce suffered with a number of extreme mental health issues because of this together with isolation, despair and paranoia and lived a life that revolved around “pills and visits to healthcare professionals” till he got here throughout a leaflet from deaf charity Hearing Dogs for Deaf People in 2004.
The charity trains listening to help dogs for deaf adults and children to perform duties together with alerting a deaf individual to sounds together with the doorbell or a smoke alarm.
On June 25 2005 – “the day my life changed for the better” – he welcomed dwelling his first listening to canine Hettie via the charity.
With Hettie, I felt ten ft tall. I began to look forward to the issues I couldn’t do before, easy issues like go for a cup of espresso and feel relaxed. I made new friends and located new pursuits.
“Hettie enabled me to be aware of sounds that I can’t hear, but the relationship ran much deeper than that”, he said.
“She gave me companionship, independence, peace of mind and most important of all, she gave me trust and removed my fear.
“With Hettie, I felt 10-feet tall. I started to look forward to the things I couldn’t do before, simple things like go for a cup of coffee and feel relaxed. I made new friends and found new interests.”
As Hettie neared retirement, Mr Joyce obtained a second listening to canine – Vectra – and appeared after Hettie till she passed away, whom he thanked for altering him into an individual with a “more positive outlook” in life.
He told the PA news company: “Having Vectra is not just about sounds, it’s also about participation – the feeling of being involved not isolated, as deafness can be an isolating disability.
“He’s my shadow, my sidekick. If he wasn’t by me, it would feel very alien. I couldn’t imagine him not being there.”
My Joyce said that he hopes by sharing his story, it will help to encourage others to search help if they’re scuffling with their mental health.
“For me getting a hearing dog gave me a focus but also got me engaged back into society to work with healthcare professionals, the mental health teams, access counselling, medication and so forth”, he said.
“There is help out there and life can get better, even for someone where it’s just total darkness right now.
“I hope this can bring a glimmer of light or plant a small seed that in the future that we can reach out and say ‘I need help’ without any pressure of the strong male stereotype.”
He added that he desires folks to be “patient” with these with listening to situations when making an attempt to talk with them, and never to “shout or mouth each syllable slowly”.
More information in regards to the charity may be discovered right here: https://www.hearingdogs.org.uk/