By Mike Waufle
I first noticed I had a hearing loss when I came out of the Marines in 1975, after three years in the service. There were certain women’s voices and certain speech patterns that I couldn’t pick up. My wife always said that when I was watching TV it was extremely loud. My daughters always complained about it, too, so there came a point where I had to do something about it.
I tried other hearing aids, but it wasn’t until the Phonak Lyric that I had success resolving my hearing loss. I was coaching for the New York Giants, around the time we won the Super Bowl in 2007. My teammate, longtime punter Jeff Feagles, went in for a physical, and it turned out he had a hearing problem. He knew I also had a hearing problem, so he recommended I see Michael Scherl, M.D., in New Jersey.
Soon afterward I met with Dr. Scherl and he recommended Lyric, then a new, extended-wear, invisible, in-the-ear-canal hearing device appropriate for mild to moderately severe hearing loss. After the Lyric hearing devices were inserted, on the very first day—right when I walked out of the doctor’s office—I could hear the leaves, the wind, my car’s turn signals. I could hear the sound of my pen writing on paper, things that I hadn’t heard in years. Lyric was like an answer to my prayers.
A coach is a teacher. I have to hear responses. When I didn’t have hearing aids and I was coaching the Oakland Raiders, my players would loudly ask a question, and then slowly but surely lower their voices so I couldn’t hear them—and they did it on purpose because they knew I couldn’t hear! But once I started using Lyric, communication—which is so important out on the field, in the locker room, everywhere in this business—skyrocketed for me.
Lyric is an extended-wear hearing device and lasts a few months (see information at right). When I need a replacement, I visit my Lyric provider’s office for a quick 10-minute visit. Thanks to Lyric’s yearly subscription plan I have a whole year of invisible, hassle-free hearing. I’m able to work and exercise and socialize and do everything I need to on a daily basis. I don’t even know it is there.
Getting Lyric has been life changing for me. It gives me the confidence to go into any environment and know for sure I’m going to be able to absorb all the information available and fully communicate and participate. Lyric has been great for me— I love these hearing aids; they’re awesome!
Mike Waufle is the defensive line coach for the National Football League’s Buffalo Bills. Previously he coached for the Oakland Raiders, the New York Giants, and the
St. Louis/Los Angeles Rams. He is not paid for his opinion about Lyric.
This article originally appeared in the Spring 2017 issue of Hearing Health magazine and is republished with permission from Hearing Health Foundation, hhf.org.