May 08, 2021

Normal Hearing and Sound Perception


How does one hear a sound? It’s actually a complicated process involving many steps which all needs to work together smoothly, otherwise hearing loss occurs. 

Normally, sound travels through the ear canal which then vibrates the eardrum. The eardrum in turn vibrates the malleus, then the incus, followed by the stapes. The stapes then stimulates the cochlea through a small opening called the oval window.

Within the cochlea, small hair cells stimulate the hearing nerve which carries the signal to a specific location within the brain called Brodmann areas 41 and 42 of the temporal lobe. It is here where sound processing occurs allowing an individual to actually perceive meaning among different sounds and understand speech.

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Fauquier ENT

Dr. Christopher Chang is a private practice otolaryngology, head & neck surgeon specializing in the treatment of problems related to the ear, nose, and throat. Located in Warrenton, VA about 45 minutes west of Washington DC, he also provides inhalant allergy testing/treatment, hearing tests, and dispenses hearing aids.

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