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Have you ever wondered what happens in the life of a cochlear implant user, after they have undergone implantation surgery? In this article, we will share insights on the process of getting a cochlear implant, how life is post-surgery, and how the aiding devices gave a new fresh listen in life.

We understand that cochlear implants are an expensive investment for your ears too. Do your research and understand from both the audiologist’s and user’s POVs first before taking the step towards committing yourself to this lifelong aid whenever you are ready.


Before the procedure, you will need to check whether you are a candidate for the implants. An audiologist who is a specialist in advanced hearing loss and hearing aids, will conduct an evaluation to determine whether the implants can help you. After a basic medical evaluation of your ears, the audiologist will continue with a scan (medical imaging) of your inner ears to allow a cochlear implant surgeon to recommend which ear is best to apply the implants.

There will be an audiological evaluation which includes the following tests:

  • Hearing test: To confirm the type and degree of hearing loss.
  • Hearing aid evaluation: To assess the benefits provided by your current hearing aids.
  • Aided speech recognition test: To determine whether other types of hearing aids provide a greater benefit/higher result for you than that anticipated with the implants.

Other than the tests, the audiologist will need to get to know you more, in terms of your take towards hearing loss and cochlear implants. You can expect the following questions that they might ask during the consultation:

  • How did you learn about cochlear implants?
  • What are the reasons that you are leaning towards the implants instead of normal hearing aids?
  • What are your expectations for them?
  • What benefits do you wish to get out of them?
  • Do you have any resistance to receiving the implants? If yes, please elaborate more.
  • Are you motivated and committed to living with the implants for life?

After you are confirmed as a candidate for the implants, you will proceed on to the surgery.


Before surgery, you will have to determine if you are strong and healthy for it. You will be scheduled for a necessary x-ray evaluation to check your inner ear for any potential problems that might obstruct successful implantation during surgery.

The surgery may last two to four hours and will be executed under general anaesthesia. An incision will be made behind the ear to insert the internal portion of the implants.

Recovery and post-surgery

After cochlear implant surgery, you might be prescribed some medicine and given instructions on how to take care of the incision site. You might see some normal side effects, such as headache, swelling, and being unable to hear right away as it takes a few weeks for the implant to be fully functional. It will take some time to recover but it is important that the incision heals before you can visit your audiologist to activate the implant.

After the implant has been activated, you will still need to go for 4-5 follow-up fine tuning sessions that will help you to adjust the implants to your needs and ensure optimal hearing performance. The number of follow-up sessions you must go for varies. If your implants can provide clear and crisp sound quality after a few sessions of tuning and months of wearing, you will only need to attend a tuning appointment once a year, if there are no other problems with the device.

Life with cochlear implants

Remember to monitor the progress and performance of your implants, seek assistance from your audiologist if there are any discomfort or disturbances with it. It always takes time to adjust to a new norm of having the implants, but with a positive mindset and attitude, you will look forward to a new experience in life with the implants!

At Cochlear Implant Singapore, we have more than 4 decades of global and regional experience in the assessment of hearing, consultations, and treatments. We aim to be a safe space for people who have undergone cochlear implant or are planning to, as well as for their loved ones too. If you are not sure which cochlear implant to choose or whether you are suitable for it,  book a consultation with us today to find out more about the cochlear implant treatment options out there.

(Image from Free Images)