Learning More About Residual Hearing And Cochlear Implants

Hearing loss can be devastating and makes a huge negative impact on your daily activities. If you are considering a cochlear implant, learning more about it and residual hearing is a good idea. Find out more about residual hearing loss and your cochlear implant.

Defining Sensorineural And Residual Hearing Loss

If you are experiencing sensorineural hearing loss, it means you can only hear sounds below a certain sound frequency. Sounds that are higher than that certain frequency are the sounds you are unable to hear. Residual hearing loss describes the hearing capability still working despite a hearing loss. When you experience sensorineural hearing loss, it is because the tiny hairs in the cochlea are damaged or missing. The hairs in the cochlea are responsible for sending messages to brain that convert into the sounds you hear. Residual hearing occurs when some of the hairs in the cochlea are still functioning normally among many of them that are missing or damaged. In most cases, residual hearing is the reason you can still hear low frequency sounds despite a remarkable overall occurrence of hearing loss.

The Preservation Of Residual Hearing Is Important

When your implant is placed in the cochlea, your doctor will be careful not to interrupt the hairs left that are providing your residual hearing. Along with your surgeon's skill, your implant has a design that also makes it easier to avoid damaging the tiny hairs still present in your cochlea. In most cochlea implant designs, the electrode arrays, the part of the implant that sends messages to your brain, are soft and flexible. When the implant is inserted into your cochlea, the soft arrays do not cause any damage to the natural hairs growing there.

Thanks to the innovation taking place in the world of medical research surrounding hearing loss, the cochlea implant design has become quite amazing. Modern implants fit well with your own cochlea and do so without being uncomfortable. Most people experiencing hearing loss that still hear some sound do so because of residual hearing. When you have a cochlear implant put in, residual hearing compliments the amplification it provides.

If you wonder how much residual hearing you have right now, discussing it with Suburban Hearing Services or your local audiologist is a good idea, especially if you are considering a cochlea implant. Your hearing depends on the messages sent from the cochlea to your brain, so ensuring they get there is important. Your doctor can tell you more about your level of residual hearing and how it will be impacted by a cochlear implant.