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How Long Does It Take to Adjust to Cochlear Implants?

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For people with hearing loss, everyday life can be frustrating and discouraging. From excelling at work to thriving in relationships and even navigating traffic can be a challenge — and sometimes even unsafe — for those with poor hearing. Whether you're not a candidate for hearing aids or hearing aids are no longer effective or adequate, it may be time to consider the possibility of cochlear implants. At Cross Timbers ENT, with convenient locations in Arlington, Mansfield, and Midlothian, TX, our Dallas-area hearing specialists are here to help your family understand their options when it comes to improving or restoring hearing so that you can enjoy all that life has to offer to the fullest. If you qualify for cochlear implants, we'll guide you through each step of the process to ensure you are prepared, comfortable, and confident in knowing what to expect with cochlear implants. Keep reading to find answers to some of the most popular questions about getting cochlear implants, including why you'll need to wait to have cochlear implants activated and how long it may take you to get used to your cochlear implants.

When are cochlear implants recommended?

Because every case of hearing loss is unique, each patient will undergo a comprehensive evaluation to determine eligibility for cochlear implants. This may include a hearing exam, speech assessment, imaging studies, and other diagnostic tests. Generally speaking, cochlear implants may be considered an appropriate and suitable option for patients who have:

  • Moderate to severe hearing loss
  • Certain congenital abnormalities resulting in near or complete hearing loss
  • Difficult or absence of hearing despite wearing hearing aids

What is the timeline for getting cochlear implants?

Once a patient has completed their evaluation and is determined to be an eligible candidate for cochlear implants, their surgery will be scheduled. Cochlear implant surgery is typically performed as an outpatient procedure using general anesthesia, and most patients can return home the same day. During surgery, the cochlear implant is inserted via an incision directly behind the ear, which is then closed with sutures. After several weeks, the cochlear implant will be activated, and the patient's ability to hear will continue to change and improve in the following weeks and months.

Why do you have to wait to activate a cochlear implant?

After cochlear implant surgery, the incisions and tissues around the ear and surgical site will need to fully heal and settle before the implant can be "turned on," which can take several weeks.

How long will it take to get adjusted to cochlear implants?

Again, because every patient's hearing, brain function, and other aspects of their anatomy and hearing loss are unique, the timeline for adjusting to cochlear implants can vary from person to person. After the implant is activated, patients can expect to attend a series of ongoing follow-up appointments to assess their progress and have their implant adjusted and recalibrated as their hearing continues to evolve and improve. On average, this can take several months, but fully adjusting to cochlear implants may take up to a year — meaning patience is key. Still, the dramatic improvement in quality of life with cochlear implants makes it considered well worth the wait.

Open yourself up to a whole new world and enjoy all that life has to offer with cochlear implants in North Texas

At Cross Timbers ENT, our caring team is proud to play a role in helping patients live their best lives by offering cochlear hearing implants in the North Dallas area. For more information about the life-changing benefits of cochlear implants, call any of our convenient DFW ENT offices in Arlington, Midlothian, or Mansfield, TX to schedule your consultation for cochlear implants today.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.