Cochlear implants have been the go-to tool for those with significant hearing loss. However, in order to implant a cochlear device, one must be willing to go under the knife and dish out a substantial amount of money.

That’s why researchers from Colorado State University started looking for a more practical solution, which caused them to turn to an unlikely organ: the tongue.

Colorado State University researchers John William, Leslie Stone-Roy, and JJ Moritz have developed a Bluetooth-enabled microphone earpiece in conjunction with a smart retainer that fits on a person’s tongue to strengthen the hearing of partially deaf people.

Of course, you can’t organically hear though your tongue. Instead, the device works to reprogram areas of the brain in order to help partially deaf people interpret various sensations on the tongue as certain words. The tongue is the perfect organ for this application due to its hypersensitive ability to discern between tactile sensations.