What started as a wild idea is now changing the lives of those we know and love–people right here in your local city, area or neighborhood. One of those lives is Amanda Morrow.

Born deaf and undiagnosed until the age of two, doctors determined speech therapy was the best form of treatment for her, but her hearing impairment was not the only challenge she faced.

“I had a rough time when I was younger because my mother put me in a public school,” Morrow said. “I live in a hearing world, so I felt like I wasn’t accepted. I felt left out for a long time.”

Morrow battled slower comprehension, making friends and feeling accepted. The years that followed were hard, but looking back she’s thankful her mother enrolled her in a public school. She continued to work with her speech therapist in developing her communication skills, which helped her through high school and into a career.

“I never used my hearing impairment as an excuse,” Morrow said. “Accept who you are, own it!”

Through new technology advancements and developments, a medical device known as a cochlear implant is helping those who have severe to profound hearing loss.

Amanda discovered the option of a cochlear implant and was soon determined a candidate for the surgery.

A cochlear implant is a small, complex electronic device that can provide a sense of sound to people who are born deaf or who experience hearing loss. Surgically implanted, it works by replacing the function of the damaged inner ear by transmitting electrical impulses to the cochlea directly, simulating auditory nerve fibers.

This amazing medical breakthrough can be attributed back to an Oklahoman, Dr. Jack Hough, who founded the Hough Ear Institute. Through his leadership the Hough Ear Institute has been a leader in the research and development of cochlear implants since the 1980s. Their breakthroughs pioneered the magnetic coupling device used today in all implant procedures.

Dr. Rick Kopke, CEO of the Hough Institute, has a unique understanding of cochlear technology and its crucial role in restoring sound in children and adults.

“It’s a game-changer. It’s a life-changer. People that would have had to get out of the workforce are still working. They’re connecting with their families. For a child that’s never heard before, to be able to hear his mom, those are all pretty rewarding things,” said Kopke.

Today, it’s estimated that more than 325,000 people worldwide already benefit from cochlear implants. For these Americans and Amanda Morrow, hearing life’s most precious moments wouldn’t be possible without this medical breakthrough.

“I realize my speech is clearer, I can communicate with my daughters better. I can help them to talk better as they’re growing, just like another parent,” Morrow said. “I got that confidence back, I’m happy, and I’m proud I’m doing this all by myself!”

To be safely implanted into patients, a silicone encasement, made with oil and natural gas by-products, is used to cover sensitive electronics. The use of silicone keeps moisture out of the system and its smooth pliable surface makes it comfortable and safe for the patient to wear.

Our natural resources are behind many of life’s greatest moments, including cochlear implants, giving fellow Oklahoman’s like Amanda Morrow the chance to hear. We were there when she was able to hear her daughter’s voice for the first time.

Learn more about this life-enhancing product: