How bone conduction solutions work

Did you know sound travels through the bones in your head? Learn more about how bone conduction solutions work.

Bone conduction implant recipient - Grandpa with his granchildren having breakfast in with a view

What is bone conduction hearing?

There are two ways to hear. The first is when sounds travel to our eardrums through the ear canal. This way of hearing is called air conduction.

Bone conduction offers a second way to hear, when sound vibrations travel through bones in our head. These vibrations bypass the eardrum and transmit sounds straight to the cochlea, which transforms the sounds into a message for our brain.

Both types of hearing work together to help us hear and perceive sound.

How bone conduction implants work

A bone conduction implant system can bypass damaged or blocked parts of the ear and deliver sound vibrations directly to the inner ear. These vibrations become sounds our brain may understand.

Bone conduction implants work by using the body's natural ability to conduct sound. They are designed to provide a more complete listening experience for people with single-sided hearing loss, conductive hearing loss or mixed hearing loss.

There are three parts to a bone conduction system:

  • a small titanium implant that is surgically inserted in the bone behind the ear

  • an abutment or a magnet that connects the implant to the sound processor

  • an external sound processor.

Together, these parts bypass the section of the ear that isn't working, sending sound vibrations directly through the bone to the hearing organ in the cochlea.

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You can search for clinics in a different location, or contact Cochlear to understand what the next steps for you would be.


Please seek advice from your health professional about treatments for hearing loss. Outcomes may vary, and your health professional will advise you about the factors which could affect your outcome. Always read the instructions for use. Not all products are available in all countries. Please contact your local Cochlear representative for product information.

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