The Workings of the Inner EarApril 14, 2017
Your sense of hearing is basically generated from your inner ear. This part of the ear is the final part that sends sound signals to the brain to help us recognize and interpret the sounds we are hearing from our surrounding environments.
The process of hearing is an interesting one. The initial sound signals are first collected from the outer ear where it travels into the ear canal through the eardrum where it reaches the middle ear. The eardrum receives the sound signals and turns the sound into kinetic energy which is sent through the bones inside the middle ear known as the malleus, incus, and stapes. The kinetic energy is converted by these bones into vibrations and the sound waves are sent through an oval window directly towards the inner ear.
The wave vibrations continue their journey onwards around the inner ear towards the cochlea where the signals trigger the sensory hair follicles located within the cochlea which responds to each specific sound. The sound waves are then converted into electrical impulses which are then sent towards the brain which deciphers the sound stimuli and makes sense of what we are hearing.
Another major part within the inner ear are the semicircular canals. These canals are filled with liquid that increases and decreases, and are responsible for maintaining our sense of equilibrium and balance.
Considering the important role that is played by our inner ears, it is imperative that we keep them protected at all times. We can do this firstly by preventing our ears from being exposed to loud noises for a long time since this can damage the tiny hair follicles inside the inner ear. This damage could lead to Tinnitus (a ringing sensation within our ears) or deafness.
Protecting our ears is important to maintain not only our hearing but also our sense of balance. We can do this by wearing earplugs, earmuffs, or headphones to protect our ears from loud noises and physical trauma. Keep your ears safe from harm and enjoy your hearing experience for all your days to come.