Cochlear-Hear Your Way!

#MyFriendAlexa

This is in continuation with my blog Importantance of hearing screening for newborns. As I have already introduce Cochlear implants to you, let me share some more details for Cochlear implants.

Before we start this in detail we need to understand

How hearing works?

Our Ears have three sections

  • Outer Ear that catches sound waves and send to middler ear.
  • Middle Ear  transfers the sound waves in the air to mechanical pressure waves that are transfer to fluid in the inner ear.
  • Inner ear ( Cochlea ) then converts the pressure waves into sound signals that our brain understands.

 

So basically what happens is

  • Sound waves enters the ear canal and strikes the eardrum.
  • With effects of these sound waves the ear drum and the three bones know as ossicles with the middle ear vibrate.
  • With the effect of vibration moving in the inner ear fluid, the tiny hait cells present in the cochlea detects the movement and change them into chemical signal that can be taken by hearing nerve.
  • Then these hearing nerves transfer the signals to brain with electrical impulses and their these signals are interpreted as sounds.
  • Sharing a quick video of this for better understanding.

Now the question is what is Cochlear Implant?

Cochlear implant is an electronical medical device that replace the function of damaged iner ear cochlea and send sound signals to the brain.

How Cochlear Implants works?

Their is two parts of Cochlear Implant.

  • Sound processor  worn outside the ear and it contains microphone, batteries and this can be attached with cloths for small babies.
  • Implant this is actual implant and is placed inside ear through small surgery.

Coming to how implant works..

  • Sound processor that is worn behind ear captures sound and turns it into digital codes.
  • Then the sound processor transfer the digital codes to the coil on the outside of the head to the implant.
  • Then the cochlear implant converts the digitally coded sounds into electrical impulses and send them along the electrode erray placed in the inner ear.
  • Here the implant electrodes stimulate the Cochlea hearing nerve, which send the impulses to the brain and then they are interpreted as sounds.
  • Here is a small video for easy understanding.

What age a child can get a Cochlear Implant?

How early you get to know about the baby hear loss ,you can cinscon your doctor and with proper test and cinfconfirmat of level of hearing loss, Cochlear implants can be done with 12 months of age.

How long is the Cochlear Implant surgery?

Surgery takes three to four hours. During the operation a small incision is made behind the ear and internal device know as receiver stimulator is places under the skin and is secured to the child’s skull.

Why one should have Cochlear Implant?

  • It is better then a normal hearing aid- Hearing aid amplify sounds and cochlear implant channel sound to bypass the damaged part of the cochlea and directly stimulate the auditory nerves. The implant generates signals and send to auditory nerve and then it is send to brain, where they are recognized as sounds .
  • Understanding of full sentences is better with cochlear implants the hearing aids.
  • They can hear better in table meetings, crowded places and restaurants.
  • Talk and hear on phones and can enjoy music.
  • They feel more safe with cochlear implants as now they can hear alarms, approaching vehicles and traffic.
  • Newborns start normal development and start connecting with their family members and other people as now they can hear them and respond back.

Points to take care

  • Cost- yes this is really important point as these implants are bit costly so one can choose from the different model and contact them for better price.
  • Taking care the device should not get hit by any hard object.
  • Protection from water- but now they are coming up with new device which can be worn for swimming too.
  • Maintenance – changing batteries and wires.
  • Takes times and proper training to get used to with sound through device, as sounds are translated through device first and may sound unnatural, but for newborns its good as they start hearing through this and learn this way.

 

Cochlear has come up with new Nucleus 7 which can be connected and control directly from your smartphones.

How Nucleus 7 is helpful for parents?

  • With new smart phone app now parents are able to monitor important aspects of child’s sound processor usage.
  • Parents can monitor the battery life of sound processor and current status of device,feeling confident about functioning of device.
  • Parents can now track the time in speech and coils off with the hearing tracker.
  • They can locate the missing processor with find my processor feature in app.
  • They can minimize any time child spend without sounds.

My words

I feel cochlear implant is such a nice way to bring your baby back to her normal development as without sound they are not able to connect with surroundings. Yes main concern is for surgery and costing as getting this implant is costlier and not everyone can afford. Hoping government comes up with better easy schemes that anyone can afford getting this implant. Do share your views on this.

Here are some words from happy family of Cochlear implants.

I am taking my Alexa rank to the next level with Blogchatter

Importance of hearing screening by Cochlear

#MyFriendAlexa

Hearing screening yes this is as important as any vaccination provided to your newborn baby. We are not so aware about this as it is not a compulsory test in Indian hospitals. But I am happy to see now private hospitals are taking initiative in new-born screening. This test is now included in compulsory test for newborns.

We had this test for our baby girl at Apollo Cradle, in starting few days. I was really tensed when the doctor said they are not getting response so they need to do test again. After one month, thankfully she started responding soon and we were happy as no such test happened again.

But as I was unaware of these test and all details, I decided to learn more about this and share with all new moms. Let’s discuss more about hearing screening and related details.

What is newborn hearing screening?

New born hearing screening focus on identifying hearing loss at early stage. As we all know knowing the problem at early stage is better so that we can get proper solution as soon as possible.  Hearing screening can be done as early as starting few days and if any hearing loss is detected further test can be done. We can get confirmation for the level of hearing loss and can start the treatment and early intervention as soon as possible.

Sharing a small video to know how hearing works in my next blog.

Early Intervention refers to therapy and other services provided to babies and family that may help with hearing loss and learning important communication skills.

Now the question is what is hearing loss?

A person who is not able to hear as well as someone with normal hearing is said to have hearing loss. It can vary in severity. A peep with mild hearing loss may find it difficult to understand conversations in noisy places such as restaurant. Someone with moderate hearing loss has difficulty understanding regular conversation unless voices are raised. Others who have severe hearing loss are unable to hear even very loud sounds close to there ears.

What causes hearing loss among newborns?

  • Family history
  • Infection suffered by the mother during pregnancy
  • Premature birth
  • Lack of oxygen at the time of birth
  • Severe jaundice soon after birth.

How is newborn hearing screening done?

We need to do it as soon as possible,as early the hearing loss is discovered, treatment can begin and baby can get back to normal language and development.

There are two types of screening test that may be used for newborns.

  • Automated Auditory Brainstem Response (AABR) – This test measures how the hearing nerves respond to the sounds. Some tones and clicks are played through soft earphones into baby’s ears and three electrodes are placed on baby’s head measures the hearing nerves response.

  • Otoacoustic Emissions (OAE) – This test measures sound waves produced in the inner ear. A tiny probe is placed just inside the baby’s ear canal. It measures the response when the clicks or tones are played into baby ears.

What is the next step if the baby not pass the hearing test?

It is possible at time baby not pass the hearing screening at birth as in my case too. But that does not necessarily mean that baby had hearing loss. In fact most of the babies do not pass the hearing test and have normal hearing afterwards, their can be many reason like baby might get fluids inside ear at the time of delivery.

So to be sure, we need to take proper further testing and hearing evaluation with a medical evaluation. Make sure these test are done before baby is three months old, so that if their is any hear loss, treatment can be started as soon as possible and baby can meet all round development at time.

What to be done, when hearing loss is confirmed?

Now when you get confirmation with hearing loss,it is important to know the type and level of hearing loss the baby has. You need to consult good and experienced Audiologist, Otolaryngologist (ear/nose/and throat doctor) and pediatrician. As some babies with hearing loss and have some effects on vision also,so proper test is important.

Audiologist will help you with special hearing test and therapy needed and if the hearing loss is permanent, hearing aid and therapy might be recommended for your baby.

Mom’s with Brett Lee – Global Hearing Ambassador of Cochlear’s

I was really happy to attend this informative session by Cochlear India knowing the importance of new born hearing screening. As most of us are unaware of the fact that out of 1000 babies 1 to 3 are born with some degree of hearing loss. So as earlier we can detect the problem we can start treatment with early intervention.

Brett Lee having some fun time with kid

It feel so good to see Brett Lee Cochlear first Global hearing ambassador . He has been spearheading ‘Sound of cricket’ campaign to raise awareness about the various impacts hearing loss can have on individual life and family. He is actively participating and spreading awareness and giving his personal time and attention, going and attending all government hospitals and meeting all patients.

Covering full details for Cochlear implant in my next blog.😊

I am taking my Alexa rank to the next level with Blogchatter