A cochlear implant is a device which directly stimulates the hearing nerve. It can provide sound for people who have a severe to profound hearing loss and/or receive little or no benefit from conventional hearing aids. Cochlear implant surgery is usually done after a child is at least one year of age. What is the difference between a hearing aid and a cochlear implant? Hearing aids make sounds louder. However, for children who have a severe to profound hearing loss, hearing aids may not be adequate in providing consistent access to sound for understanding of speech. Cochlear implants may be a good option for these children. What are the parts of a cochlear implant?
A cochlear implant is a device that is implanted into the inner ear. A tiny electrode is surgically inserted into the cochlea (inner ear), and a receiver is implanted behind the ear. In the picture you can see the electrode (3) inserted into the inner ear (4). The receiver (2) is under the skin behind the ear. The recipient wears an external sound processor (1).
How does a cochlear implant work?1. Sound is picked up by the microphone in the sound processor.2. The sound is converted into a digital signal, and processed. 3. The processed digital information is sent to the transmitter coil.4. The transmitter sends the information by radio waves to the receiver below the skin.5. The receiver sends the information to the electrode array in the inner ear. 6. The electrodes send signals to the hearing nerve, which the brain recognizes/perceives as sound.