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Mindy Cyzick
Mr. John Caramico
12 April 2014
English 1101
Argument Essay

Cochlear Implants vs. Sign Language


Cochlear implants should be implanted in children who are deaf or hard of hearing
because it would cut down on academic cost, children would function better in mainstream
schools, and it would serve as a warning device to prevent fatal accidents. What is a cochlear
implant? According, to Ashley Henshaw, a publicist for symptomfind.com, A cochlear implant
is an electronic hearing device that is surgically implanted. The first part is the microphone. It is
used to pick sound in the environment and is worn externally. Next, under the skin is where the
electrode and the receiver is placed. The implant is different than a hearing aid because the
cochlear does not amplify sound, instead it stimulates the auditory nerve. Sound is heard
differently through the device. Therapy usually is followed after the implant is inserted.
The Deaf culture believes that children who are born deaf or become deaf at an early
age should not be implanted because it would take away from the child knowing about the deaf
culture, and sign language would eventually perish. While the hearing community view children
who are born Deaf or become deaf have a disability that needs to be fixed. Cochlear implants
should be implanted in children who are deaf or hard of hearing because it would cut down on

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academic cost, children would function better in mainstream schools, and it would serve as a
warning device to prevent fatal accidents.
While others may argue even if the device might work, $40,000-$50,000 is just too
much money to come up with up front. Even though some insurance plans cover most of the
cost, the balance remaining can still be overwhelming. However, having a child implanted
between the ages of infancy to 3 years old will save the education system about $200,000 from
first through twelfth grade, according to the Dallas Hearing Foundation. Statistics on
dallashearingfoundation.com have shown, for every one dollar spent on an implant, twenty-five
dollars are being saved by not using specialized services. Researchers at Johns Hopkins stated
that children after two years of being implanted were less dependent on special educational
services.
While Johns Hopkins estimated the cost to be lower than the Dallas Hearing Foundation,
the study still found the savings cost of implanting the child at the age of 3 between $30,000
and $100,000 over the course of primary and secondary schools. Even at $100,000, money is
being saved long term compared to the initial cost of the cochlear implant surgery. The Dallas
Hearing Foundation found that Deafness is the most costly single disability in terms of special
education costs, averaging $25,000 per year per child, compared to $5,100 for a normal hearing
child
Children who are in a mainstream school setting need the one on one communication
with his or her classroom teacher. Nevertheless, children with a cochlear function better within
a mainstream school, and find it easier to find jobs in the mainstream society as compared to a

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deaf individual. Howard W, Francis, M.D. assistant professor of otolaryngologyhead and neck
surgery at Johns Hopkins, stated The cochlear implant also appears to give children a
significant educational advantage. It offers the possibility for the development of verbal
language, which increases the chance of English literacy, and better educational and vocational
opportunities.
Unfortunately, 45% of deaf adults drop out of high school, and only 5% will graduate
from college. During a deaf individuals lifetime, they lose about $320, 000 which is estimated to
be about 50-70% of what their hearing peers earn. Also stated by the Dallas Hearing
Foundation, Only 50% of deaf adults earn less than $25,000 a year. 42% between the ages of
18-44 are unemployed. While 70% rely on Medicare and Medicaid.
What the Deaf community does not commonly see is that the device works as a warning
mechanism. According to symptomfind.com the cochlear works as a safety device. Even if
children are only able to hear some environmental sounds, the device often helps individuals to
hear hazardous or threats in their area. For example, a door slamming, sirens of emergency
vehicles, train horns, and people yelling. With having the cochlear, it prevents tragic accidents
from occurring.
Even though the cochlear device has many risks or takes away from the child to learn
the Deaf Culture, academic cost is decreased, children will be able to succeed in a mainstream
school, and tragedies will be prevented when children are implanted with the cochlear implant.
Why not let the child grow up knowing the best of both worlds? Implant the child, let them feel

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what it is like to hear the beautiful sounds; however, at home have them turn off the device,
and have them use sign language showing them their own identity.

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Works Cited
"Dallas Hearing Foundation." Dallas Hearing Foundation. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Apr. 2014.
<http://dallashearingfoundation.org/facts/>.

Henshaw, Ashley. "The Pros And Cons of Cochlear Implants From SymptomFind.com." Symptomfind.com.
N.p., 14 June 2012. Web. 28 Apr. 2014. <http://www.symptomfind.com/health/cochlear-implants/>.

"Newswise." Cochlear Implant Increases Access To Mainstream Education. N.p., 30 Apr. 1999. Web. 28 Apr.
2014. <http://www.newswise.com/articles/cochlear-implant-increases-access-to-mainstream-education>.

Bleckly, Felicity. "Benefits of Cochlear Implants in children." - Deafness. N.p., 1 Jan. 2013. Web. 28 Apr.
2014. <http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art44676.asp>.