Cochlear Implant: a blessing for born deaf
| 20 Jun 2017
| Onkareshwar Pandey, Editor In Chief, NOP

Cochlear Implant: a blessing for born deaf

• By Mallika Chugh

“Blindness separates people from things; deadness separates people from people”
-Hellen Keller

Little aradhya was one of the cutest, happiest babies around. You would be hard pressed to tell that anything was wrong with her; but aradhaya lived in a world of complete silence. “After aradhaya was born, we realized the she did not respond to sounds like other babies did. She was the nucleus of our small world and we were dying to hear her first words despite our best efforts she would not respond to our spoken words. We took her to the doctor.

The doctor performed the hearing test for my daughter. My daughter failed the test; I could see my world crashing down like a car on a mountain road where I had no control on it”, her mother, a home maker, from Uttam nagar in Delhi, says “she was born deaf”.

Many people across the globe are born deaf or get deaf due to illness or accidents. Deafness creates a life of hardness for the deaf people.

In India, 63 million people suffer from hearing loss according to national sample survey (NSS) 58th round (2002). Many surveys in India have discovered that hearing disability is the second most common cause of disability. It is at the top list of sensory deficit.

For deaf people cochlear implant is like a blessing directly sent by god himself. A cochlear implant is an electronic medical device that is surgically implanted. The device helps the person in sensation of sound replacing the function of damaged ear.

Cochlear implant bypass damaged portions. Thereafter it helps in the ear to directly stimulate the auditory nerve unlike the hearing aid which works efficiently for the people who are hard of hearing as it amplifies the sound for them and helps them in hearing.

Many states in India such as Karnataka is working towards a “deafness free Karnataka”. The state health department has launched a cochlear implant project under Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakarma (RSBK) in all the general hospitals.

An insurrection as whole has starts against sensory deficit in India. The government of India plans to help its citizens and is planning to put the eminently expensive cochlear implant within reach for most of the citizens of the country.

The present expenditure of the implant costs (including the device, surgery and rehabilitation) Rs eight Lakh. The government is planning to get the cost as low as Rs one lack. Cochlear implantment has been a great success.

We as a whole society should eradicate deafness and help people with hearing impairment get a new life. The capability of hearing would be like magic to them.

(Writer Mallika Chugh is a student of Daulat Ram College of Delhi University, perusing graduation and presently doing internship with The Hans Foundation in New Delhi.)

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