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What is the Distinction between Cochlear Implant and a Hearing Aid?

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These devices are used to treat sensorineural hearing loss which is deemed the most common type of hearing loss. As both the devices attend to the hearing loss, hearing aids are more common than the implants. The former helps in treating varying degrees of hearing loss, ranging from mind to severe. Many patients can benefit from the hearing aids which amplifies the sound frequencies affected by hearing loss. Implants are helpful when hearing aids are not enough and require a severe to profound sensorineural hearing loss because of the reduced or absent cochlear hair cell function. The implants are done surgically and they replace the function of the damaged cochlea aka the inner ear and stimulate the auditory nerve directly.

How do cochlear implants work?

This device has both internal and external parts. The internal parts are called the electrodes and the receiver stimulator, and they are implanted by a professional surgeon. The surgeon equips the electrode array in the cochlea, which bypasses the damaged hair cells and the receiver stimulator is equipped behind the ear. The external component of the device consists of a microphone, processor, and transmitter that is installed behind the ear, which is similar in style to the behind the ear hearing aid. The microphone tends to pick up the sounds from the surroundings and the speech processor chooses and arranges those sounds. The transmitter gets the signals from the speech processor and transforms those into electrical impulses, which further transmits them to the surgically implanted electrode array. The electrode array then stimulates the auditory nerve, then the impulses are sent to the brain where they are interpreted as sounds.

Who needs a cochlear implant?

Most of the cochlear implants patients give the hearing aids a try in the first place. If the hearing aids aren’t offering much of a benefit, because of the lack of cochlear function or poor speech discrimination, then the cochlear implant is recommended. Ascertaining cochlear implant candidacy often encompass test auditif Audiologie Centre-Ouest, medical examination, and imaging studies like x rays or MRI. Young children can also be implanted. Most patients have a severe to profound sensorineural hearing loss or congenital deafness. Many services of rehabilitation are offered by speech language pathologists and audiologists. Health insurance companies also offer degrees of pros for the surgical procedure, the device itself and the follow up services as well.

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