Hearing- diagram of the ear


Hearing is a sensory ability to experience the world. It enables us to connect with things and to communicate with other beings. It acts as a protection against potential harmful situations and help orientate us to the environment.

As once noted so truly  by Hellen Keller: “Blindness cuts us off from things, but deafness cuts us off from people.”

Sound energy travels in the form of sound waves through the ear. It is funnelled by the pinna or external part of the ear via the external ear canal and modified until it hits the tympanic membrane. This sets about the motion in the form of fine vibrations of the ossicles or ear bones (malleus, incus and stapes) in the middle ear. in the fluid filled cochlea the mechanical sound waves are converted into electrical neural impulses in the organ of corti. The electrical nerve impulses travel with the cochlear nerve to the brainstem and then to the cortex of the brain via numerous relay station. The primary auditory cortex is situated  in the temporal lobe where the original sound impulses are processed and interpreted.

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