Bone anchored hearing aids bypass the middle ear by transmitting sound waves directly to the bones of the skull. A small post is surgically implanted into the skull, similar to the implant dentists use to attach replacement teeth. After a period of healing, the hearing aid can the snapped onto the post and used like any other hearing aid. Bone anchored hearing aids are recommended for patients who have chronic middle ear disease that interferes with hearing or that interferes with the convenient use of a standard hearing aid.
Bone anchored hearing aids are also an option for patients with one-sided deafness. Placement of a bone anchored hearing aid on the side of the deaf ear can help the patient to detect sounds coming from that direction as the sounds are transmitted through the skull to the better hearing ear.