Sound. It’s all around us. It’s your pesky alarm waking you in the morning. It’s the chirping of summer birds. It’s the words we choose to say to one another. Hearing is such a critical component of our daily lives, but how does hearing really work? Here’s a quick run down into the complex wonder that is our ears.
To understand how we hear we first need to know what sound really is. Sounds are invisible vibrations that travel through the air. Any time someone speaks or your telephone rings, invisible vibrations zip through the air in all directions. These vibrations are what we call sound waves.
Every sound wave is different. Some sound waves with a higher frequency are higher, where others are lower. That’s why our voices can generate a whole range of different sounds. When our ears capture these different sounds we can interpret them into separate messages that our brains can understand. How well the sounds are captured comes down to our ability to hear.
The Sections of the Ear
Your ear is your body’s natural hearing device, and it has three major components. The outer ear collects sound waves and directs them into the middle ear. As sound waves enter the middle ear they are transformed into mechanical pressure waves that are then transferred to the fluids of your inner ear. Finally, the inner ear, or cochlea, turns these pressure waves into signals that our brain can interpret. Inflammation of the inner ear is a common cause of hearing loss.
The Process of Hearing
The process of hearing is simple. First, sound waves enter into your ear canal and strike the eardrum. Vibrations ricocheting from your eardrum move through the fluid in your inner ear and cause tiny hair cells to move. When these tiny hair cells detect movement the waves are then changed into chemical signals for your hearing nerves. Your hearing nerves use electrical impulses to send the information to the brain, where it is then interpreted as the sounds we know and love.
Hear Better with Clarity Audiology & Hearing Solutions
Need help with your hearing? Clarity Hearing can help. Clarity Audiology & Hearing Solutions is an independently-owned and operated clinic that focuses on quality of care and personalized, friendly service. Our Doctors of Audiology are highly trained with advanced degrees and take the time to provide the personalized care and attention that you need and deserve. We provide advanced hearing aid options that personally calibrated with cutting-edge digital technology to fit your hearing loss, your unique ear anatomy, and your individual listening needs.
Come in for a walk-in appointment on Tuesdays & Fridays from 10:00am to 11:30am, or contact us to schedule an appointment by calling 410-698-6594 or visiting our contact page. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and LinkedIn for more blog posts, news, and updates!