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How do you hear?

The three tiny ear bonesYour ears pick up sounds. Sounds are caused by molecules in the air being rapidly pushed together and pulled apart. These are called vibrations. Your ears pick up these vibrations. They are turned into signals and carried along nerves to the brain.



The outside of the eardrum

Eardrum

All sounds are vibrations in the air. Your outer ears, the flaps on the outside of your head, funnel the vibrations into the tube inside. They are picked up by the eardrum. This is a patch of thin skin fixed across the tube. Tiny bones, called the hammer, anvil and stirrup, are attached to the eardrum. They send the vibrations to the inner ear. 

The three tiny ear bones, also known as the ossicles, are the smallest bones in the body.

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