In recent years, cochlear implants have become more common for infants and toddlers who are experiencing moderate to severe hearing loss. As a company that manufactures the cochlear battery, we have successfully stayed on the forefront of progress regarding this technology. It’s been amazing, and we’re proud to power it.
Cochlear implants are very different from hearing aids. First off, they do not amplify sound. Instead they bypass the damaged anatomy in the ear and directly stimulate the auditory nerve. The results can be phenomenal, but can vary from person to person. Just imagine going from near deaf to hearing in a matter of weeks.
Speech, language, and social skills are deeply interwoven and strongly related to hearing. When a child can hear well, the brain normally develops these skills organically, weaving billions of pieces of auditory input into basic skills we all use. Of course, kids with severe hearing impairment find other routes to develop these skills, but it’s a climb, rather than a cruise, for many of them.
Children as young as 12 months of age can undergo cochlear implant surgery. It generally takes between two and five hours and the benefits of the surgery will begin to arrive four to six weeks later. Though not every child is a candidate. If a child can benefit from a hearing aid, for example, that child is unlikely to qualify for a cochlear implant. Pediatric audiologists conduct the assessments to determine who qualifies.
As with any surgical procedure, there are risks, such as infection and the normal hazards of undergoing general anesthesia. Kids with cochlear implants may even experience taste disturbances. There are some unique inconveniences with the device, too, such as not being able to have MRIs. The implant can set off certain theft-detection systems or metal detectors. You may also hear strange sounds caused by interaction with magnetic fields (i.e., those near the passenger-screening machines at airports). Finally, the implants are high-drain devices, so there’s also the matter of always needing to have a cochlear battery at the ready.
Once implanted, the cochlear implant doesn’t require a great deal of work, mostly just keeping the batteries fresh. That’s where we come in. Rayovac’s mercury-free cochlear battery is specifically designed to meet the high-power demands required by a cochlear implant. It comes in a 60-pack carton, divided into 6 blister packs holding 10 batteries each. We are so privileged to do our small part in helping babies and children experience the magic of hearing!