Rehabilitation following cochlear implantation offers a structured approach by which patients learn to identify and associate meaning to the new sounds they are hearing. For children, rehabilitation is vital to develop an understanding of what is being heard through a cochlear implant. Therapy allows children to take the restored level of sensitive hearing and learn to understand spoken language and produce intelligible speech. Unlike adults who have lost their hearing after the development of speech and language, deaf children have no auditory memories to draw upon to understand spoken communication.
Rehabilitation is a lifelong process that takes the child through language acquisition learning to attach meaning first to syllables, then to words, phrases, sentences and ultimately to conversation. For adults, rehabilitation can provide the structure necessary to fine-tune their listening and communication skills.