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  • Outer Ear
  • Middle Ear
  • Inner Ear

How We Hear

Better understanding of hearing and hearing loss begins by understanding how we hear.

Sound waves are collected by the outer ear and channelled along the ear canal to the eardrum. When sound hits the eardrum, the impact creates vibrations which, in turn, cause three bones in the middle ear to move. The smallest of these bones, the stapes, fits into the oval window between the middle and inner ear. When the oval window vibrates, fluid in the inner ear transmits the vibrations into the hearing organ, called the cochlea.

In the inner ear, thousands of microscopic hair cells are bent by the wave-like action of fluid inside the cochlea. The bending of these hairs sets off nerve impulses which are then passed through the auditory nerve to the hearing centre of the brain. This centre translates the impulses into sounds the brain can recognize.

The information provided here is general in nature. If you need further information, please consult your local Audiologist.