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Baby With Cochlear Implant Hears Mom for the First Time in Touching Video
A video going viral today shows a hearing-impaired baby named Jonathan bursting into a smile after his new cochlear implant -- a sort of bionic ear -- is switched on.
It is a beautiful moment, indeed. A cochlear implant is a surgically implanted electronic device, and while it does not restore ordinary "hearing" per se, it does provide a sense of sound to the brain.
We tried to reach the family for an interview, but we can only assume that their non-responsiveness meant they were celebrating with their little lad.
More than 112,000 people worldwide have received cochlear implants. In the United States, roughly 23,000 adults and 15,500 children have received them, according to 2008 statistics on the Deafness Research Council website.
Surprisingly, cochlear implants are controversial within the deaf community, as some feel that deafness should be seen as a cultural statement, not as a disability, ABC News reports.
According to the National Center for Health Statistics, 37 million adults in the United States have trouble hearing, and some 71,000 children in the United States receive special education because of hearing problems, reports the American Speech-Language Hearing Association.
Related: Hearing Loss Doesn't Affect Quality of Life for Kids with Cochlear Implants
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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.