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Cochlear Implants Advantages And Disadvantages

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Every day it seems that another medical hurdle for humanity is leapt. A new cure for another disease or disability seems to cross the horizon at least once a year. For those affected by even minor disabilities, modern technology often provides an answer. In the case of hearing loss for instance, the technology to at least partially overcome has existed since the early 80’s. While not a complete cure, as results and effectiveness vary from patient to patient, Cochlear implants seem to a simple answer available to those who affected by serious hearing loss. As of 2012, over 300,000 people have utilized cochlear implants to overcome their disability. However, deafness is not a disability alone, but comes with a unique culture and background in…show more content…
The medical side is simple; Deaf people have a physical problem, one that can be solved with science. From their point of view there is something to be fixed with Deaf people, and modern medicine has already provided a reasonable solution. On the other end the cultural side recognizes deaf culture as both historical and prevalent. Often they see deafness as not a disability, but merely another state of life. They don’t consider themselves or other Deaf people to be “broken,” in fact they find it almost offensive to imply that their state is a non-natural one. To eliminate deafness would also eliminate deaf…show more content…
1-3 children per thousand are born with hearing loss, and it becomes a key decision for parents to decide whether or not they receive an implant. Often doctors make the distinction that the implant could be the deciding factor for a “normal” life for the child. This is more fact than fiction, implants allow children to pursue otherwise “normal” lives. Gallaudet, the premier deaf liberal arts college, reports that only five percent of the student body has cochlear implants. It’s safe to say that those who receive these implants are effectively detached from Deaf culture altogether. However, for the Deaf community, these children are considered the future of Deaf culture. As the prevalence of cochlear implants increases, (MED-EL, a large-scale provider of hearing implants, even has a long-term plan to provide each child born with “sever-to-profound sensorineural hearing loss” a cochlear implant,) the number of people in the “deaf world” decreases. As Ohio University’s Institute for Applied and Professional Ethics states, “each deaf child is considered a means to the culture’s ends, the survival of the culture, and not the child’s own end… If all deaf-born infants are implanted and choose the hearing world, then it will be the demise of a culture.” Deaf people have developed what is considered in Deaf culture to be a new norm, an acceptable standard which the deaf community revolves around; being
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