Cochlear implants are the next treatment option for patients who are straining to hear even with the use of powerful hearing aids. They help adults who have a moderate to profound sensorineural hearing loss or children with a moderate to profound hearing loss in both ears. Unlike hearing aids, cochlear implants may be covered by Medicare, private insurance plans, and Medi-Cal.
1. Improve auditory awareness of soft sounds
2. Improve speech and language skills
3. Improve quality of life
4. Improve employment opportunities
The internal implant is placed surgically underneath the skin and attached to an electrode that is inserted in the inner ear (cochlea). This electrode bypasses the damaged inner ear hair cells that are causing the hearing loss and directly stimulate the auditory nerve.
After the internal implant is placed during an outpatient surgery, patients need at least a three week recovery period before the external sound processor can be activated and the new way of hearing can begin.
External sound processor
The external device, similar to a hearing aid, houses a microphone, a speech processor, and a transmitter. The directional microphones pick up sound, sending it to the coil which is held to the head by a magnet that has been implanted under the skin. After the healing and recovery process has taken place, the external processor can be activated by an Audiologist. The act of programming or adjusting the sound quality of the cochlear implant is called "mapping".
Sound processors now have built-in bluetooth connectivity, just like your hearing aids.
Waterproof accessories finally allow you the ability to hear while in the water! Children now have the ability to play marco-polo for the first time.
Cochlear implant processors now have the ability to work with hearing aids to create truly binaural hearing.