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Programming of the speech processor of the cochlear implant is commonly called “Mapping”. The first mapping session is called “switch-on”.

Mapping involves programming of the device by an audiologist who has special expertise in the field of cochlear implants. This is done at regular intervals, so that the recipient can hear very soft sounds and also loud sounds at a comfortable level. The cochlear implant device can process only a limited range of sounds as compared to our normal range of hearing . Thus it needs to compress the natural range of sounds into a small band. During the mapping process, the stimulation levels of the cochlear implant’s internal electrode array are adjusted so that the user can hear the wide range of sounds that he / she may be exposed to.

Each “map” is individual to its user and changes over time. Maps may become weak, soft, or less clear as tissue grows around the electrode array, or if the user “adapts” to the map. This may result in sound becoming less clear or not being heard as a loud enough signal. Therefore regular visits to the audiologists for repeated mapping sessions are an integral part of the post implant habilitation.

In the realm of addressing hearing difficulties, hearing aids serve as a practical remedy for mild-to-moderate hearing loss. However, for individuals unable to derive benefit from hearing aids, cochlear implant systems offer a specialized solution. These electronic devices are crafted to stimulate the auditory nerve using electric signals, enabling the brain to interpret these signals as sound.

Distinguished as the sole technology capable of functionally restoring one of our fundamental senses, cochlear implants differ from hearing aids by circumventing damaged inner ear components to optimize auditory reception. Those equipped with cochlear implants experience enhanced clarity amidst noisy environments, an improved appreciation of music, and the rekindling of connections with friends and family.

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