Life with Cochlear Implants

Deb A., Cochlear Nucleus recipient

“It got activated and I remember we had a 4th of July get together with a bunch of friends and I was sitting around a table and everybody was talking and I was just having a great time listening to everybody and hearing what they had to say.

Deb A., Cochlear™ Nucleus® recipient

Headphones for a hearing testHear Her Story

Live Life in Full Color – Consider Cochlear Implants

Losing your hearing can feel like your life goes from full color to black and white, from being part of your family to feeling like you’re the only one in the room. Even with the best hearing aids, your hearing can deteriorate until nothing seems to work anymore.

And that’s no way to live.

But there is hope. You have choices on how to treat your hearing loss.

We’ve heard amazing stories from patients about their experiences with Cochlear Implants.

After a full hearing evaluation and test, we’ll review what hearing solutions work best for your type of hearing loss. If hearing aids are no longer enough, we may refer you to a doctor to talk about:

Cochlear Implants

This hearing solution has two parts: an external sound processor similar to hearing aids and a surgical implant that transmits sound directly to the inner ear, bypassing damaged parts of the ear. They help people with moderate to severe hearing loss and where hearing aids are no longer enough.

Not only are cochlear implants incredibly powerful and effective, they are often covered by insurance. (See here for more details on insurance coverage.)

When to Consider Cochlear Hearing Solutions

If you’re wearing your hearing aids faithfully, but still:

  • Struggle to make out conversation
  • Think people are mumbling all the time
  • Read lips and ask people to repeat themselves
  • Can’t hear in noisy environments
  • Feel isolated

These are all indications that your hearing aids are no longer enough for you.

Studies show that patients with cochlear implants were:

  • 5 times more satisfied with their ability to understand what is said on TV1
  • 11 times more satisfied with their ability to hear on the phone2

Plus, they understood sentences 7 times better than with hearing aids alone.3

Here’s what patients say after getting implants.

Steps to Getting Cochlear Implants or Hearing Solutions


Come in for a hearing test and evaluation

We not only evaluate the extent of your hearing loss, but which frequencies you can’t hear, and how bad the hearing is in noisy environments. We may even demo a hearing aid to see if it helps your hearing.

We’ll also review your full history, where you’re having difficulty hearing, and your goals and answer any questions you have.


Check insurance coverage

Unlike many other hearing devices, Cochlear Implant systems are often covered by Medicare, Medicaid and private insurance. (Every plan is different. See here for more information.) Even better, Cochlear offers a service to help you get through the insurance red tape successfully. This process usually begins at your surgeon’s office.


Discover what people who have had the surgery say about their experience

What would it be like to hear again? Here’s what patients say about the experience.


Meet with a specialist and schedule surgery

We’ll refer you to a specialist who will evaluate which hearing solution is best for you. If you decide to proceed, they’ll walk you through the next steps including: Scheduling surgery, choosing the colors and features you’d like, and preparing for the big day.


Have the procedure

Relax. Your surgeon will guide you through this process. It usually takes about 90 minutes, and most patients are back to their normal routine in a few days.


Come back to our office to turn the device on

After a few weeks, you’ll come into an appointment where we will turn on your device, program it, and teach you how to start your hearing therapy.


Schedule your hearing therapy

Retraining your brain to interpret sounds into recognizable words takes practice and is a gradual process. Getting the most out of your implants requires training and rehabilitation therapy where you train your brain and ear to decipher the sounds and electrical impulses from your device into words. We’ll use these appointments to fine-tune the programming of your device to your preferences. You’ll also learn how to care for your device. Don’t worry, we will help you through this process until you are comfortable with your new hearing system. 

Schedule a test to see what hearing loss treatments are best for you.


  1. Clinical Evaluation of the Cochlear Nucleus CI532 Cochlear Implants in Adults Investigator Meeting. 2019 Apr.
  2. Potts LG, Skinner MW, Litovsky RA, Strube MJ, Kuk F. Recognition and localization of speech by adult cochlear implant recipients wearing a digital hearing aid in the nonimplanted ear (bimodal hearing). Journal of the American Academy of Audiology. 2009 Jun 1;20(6):353-73.
  3. Balkany T, Hodges A, Menapace C, et al. Nucleus Freedom North American clinical trial. Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 2007; 136(5):757-762.
  4. Effects of Hearing Loss on Development. American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) [Internet]. 2013 [Cited 2013 July]. Available from:
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