Speech Comprehension and Hearing
Hearing loss doesn’t only effect the volume at which we hear, but our ability to understand speech as well. Hearing loss affects our speech comprehension because it hinders our ability to hear clearly and to make out certain sounds and syllables. When you can’t hear well because of hearing loss, your brain doesn’t receive the proper stimulation it needs to stay active and healthy. Hearing loss makes it so your brain misses certain words and sounds. Eventually, your brain will forget those sounds entirely, making it difficult for you to clearly understand the conversation.
What is Speech Comprehension?
Speech comprehension is the identification of the speech signal against an auditory background and its transformation into information. Beginning at a young age, we learn information from speech and hearing. When we hear sounds, the brain processes those sounds into information and then stores them as a memory, so when we hear that sound again we can correlate a meaning to it. Speech comprehension is a crucial part of development, especially for children.
Speech Comprehension and Children
One of the biggest obstacles for children with hearing loss is the development of speech and processing information. If left untreated, hearing loss in children can lead to developmental delays. It is important for children with hearing loss to see a hearing professional immediately in order to prevent any speech delays or development issues.
How Hearing Loss Affects Adults
Children are not the only ones who can experience speech comprehension issues. Many adults with untreated hearing loss can also lose their ability to recognize and understand speech. Without the ability to clearly hear sound, you aren’t able to effectively process sound into information.
When left untreated, hearing loss will affect the way you already understand and process words. After a while your brain will have a difficult time distinguishing what is being said and will soon forget certain words and their meanings. This can lead to an array of health conditions including cognitive decline and even dementia.
What Can You Do?
The best way to prevent issues with speech comprehension is to wear hearing aids. Hearing aids allow you to hear clearly and they automatically adjust to the sounds around you while filtering background noise. They will allow you to hear sounds you may have forgotten, such as the hum of the refrigerator or birds chirping outside. Hearing aids can help prevent any loss of speech comprehension by keeping your brain active and healthy.
Your hearing is important to your overall well-being and brain health. Don’t let hearing loss affect your ability to understand speech. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you hear – and feel – your best.