In some cases, it is possible to regain the ability to hear. If properly treated, otitis media causes only temporary deafness. But if the damage is serious, it is necessary to take other measures to promote reintegration into the world of sounds.
Hearing aids are a common solution, either behind the ear or, in the case of severe disability, directly in the ear. Another therapeutic procedure is a cochlear implant: the surgically integrated system transmits electrical signals directly to the auditory nerve which are interpreted as auditory impulses.
If none of these methods work, the alternative is to learn sign language. It is a form of communication that relies on gestures, facial mimicry, body language, and specific signals formed with the hands, based on specific words and grammatical rules.
At the end of pregnancy, hearing is the fetus’s most acute sense. The ear is very sensitive and active even during sleep, and has amazing properties. It contains the smallest bone in the human body, the stapes, and is 2.6 to 3.4 millimeters long and weighs between 2 to 4.3 milligrams. In combination with two other small bones, the malleus and incus, they transmit vibrations from the eardrum to the inner ear, which the brain interprets as sounds.
To protect this precious sense, and avoid irreparable damage, it is important to protect children and adolescents as much as possible from exposure to intense noise – for example, in the form of loud music, or the blasting soundtracks of computer games, especially heard through headphones.
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