It’s been a solid 11 years since SJ got her cochlear implants.  As an adrenaline junkie she has had her fair share of adventures. She’s been rock climbing, rappelling, cliff jumping, kayaking, and caving to name a few.




SJ has also had a little exposure to thrill rides at carnivals and theme parks. This year for Christmas she received a King’s Island Pass.

King’s Island is Cincinnati’s 364 acre amusement park. Of course she was the most excited about getting to ride all of the roller coasters, but there isn’t a lot of information out there about roller coasters and cochlear implants. I know cochlear implant users ride roller coasters, but the opinions about how cautious you should be varies.

One side claims you shouldn’t attempt riding a roller coaster at all if you have a cochlear implant. I called SJ’s CI manufacturer (Cochlear Americas) to get the official stance on the matter and they told me the audiologist recommends wearing a helmet for any high risk activity, which according to their list included carousels. CAROUSELS!? The fake horsies that calmly go around in a circle? That seems extreme.

On the opposite end of the spectrum are CI recipients who ride any and all roller coasters and keep their processors on with no modifications. For the record, I know someone in real life who had a CI processor fly off on a ride and it was lost forever. I will not be in the camp of zero precautions, but I also don’t want to limit her from having a reasonable level of fun.

When SJ went to King’s Island with her friends this summer she taped them on, took them off for various rides and brought extra tape to secure them again.

So that’s my Advice for anyone with cochlear implants wondering how to approach roller coasters or rides. If you are going to an amusement park tape your processors on and tether them to your shirt with a clip. Here is the tape we use.

and here is the clip we use. You can get both items on Amazon.

I would personally suggest taking your device off and storing it in a secure place like a pocket with a zipper while on the ride. Bring extra tape so that you aren’t using the same piece and it looses its stickiness. This isn’t official medical advice so talk to your audiologist or ENT for stipulations that are specific to you, but as someone who is always researching and hasn’t been able to find much online I wanted to share our experience. Most importantly just be encouraged that having hearing devices does not have to hold you back. You can still have fun!

Although I was nervous about her King’s Island visit SJ came home with both processors and had no issues at all. In fact she had the time of her life and talked endlessly about how much she enjoyed the rides.

My friend who brought her to the park sent pictures which were so fun to see. I went through them one by one with SJ and asked her how she handled her processors in each scenario. Here were her responses.

The Banshee is inverted so you hang from the roller coaster tracks instead of riding on it. SJ said she took her implants off for this one because she was told it was “super crazy”. She also took her Crocs off because people have lost shoes on this ride. She said she doesn’t like not hearing on the ride but also thought it was VERY fun!

The Rushing River Log Ride made me nervous because it’s water and her devices can get wet, but they aren’t water proof. SJ loved this ride and told me she kept her processors on the whole time. She did get wet but it wasn’t submersion and we have a drying box to put them in at home. We’ve used Zephyr by Dry & Store since day one of our hearing loss journey.

The Beast is a roller coaster that I remember from my childhood, not that I ever rode it because for the record I AM THE OPPOSITE of SJ. I am scared of heights and at her age I was terrified of roller coasters. SJ said “I took my implants off of this one because it was one of those ride that were very bumpy. It had a lot of sharp turns and stuff. So yeah, if I did keep my implants on then they were probably going to fall off.”


Here is what SJ told me about the Diamond Back “For this one I kept my implants on but at one part there was like some water but none of it hit me so my implants stayed dry and they stayed on the whole time. I thought it was fun but I wished it had more water.”


Mystics Timbers is one she had done many times before and she told me that she kept her processors on and it was fine.

When I asked SJ about each ride I had voice to text transcribe as she talked to me and here is exactly what the text says

“For the Orion my friends said I should take them off because they thought that they would fly off, same with my crocs, but I just keep them on because I didn’t want to not be able to hear anything while on the roller coaster. They stayed on pretty well. The magnets did come off but I just put them back on.”


“My implants stayed on just the magnet parts came off.”

She calls her devices her implants. What she was saying is that the hearing device stayed securely taped to her ears, but the magnet which is attached by a coil came off of her head and she just reattached it while riding. It turned out okay, but still freaks me out. For the record the Orion is the seventh-tallest and tenth-fastest roller coaster in the world. At one point it goes 91 mph. I want to puke just thinking about it.

One ride they did not get a photo on was the Flight of Fear which is an indoor roller coaster. I have ridden it before and so has SJ. There are signs posted that warn riders to remove earrings or hearing devices because of the over the shoulder restraints. So for that ride she does remove her processors.

SJ gives 5 stars to all the rides. She absolutely loves Kings Island.