We used to call them books-on-tape, once upon a time. Naturally, that was long before CDs, not to mention digital streaming. These days, they have a much better name; audiobooks.
With an audiobook, you will listen to the book being read by a narrator. It’s a bit like when you were younger and a parent or teacher read to you. You’ll be able to discover new things, get lost in an enchanting story, and experience ideas you never knew about. Audiobooks are a wonderful way to pass time and enrich your mind.
As it turns out, they’re also a fantastic way to achieve some auditory training.
What’s auditory training?
So you’re most likely rather interested about exactly what auditory training is. It sounds laborious like homework.
Auditory training is a specialized form of listening, developed to help you increase your ability to process, perceive, and interpret sounds (medically known as “auditory information”). We often discuss auditory training from the context of getting accustomed to a pair of hearing aids.
Because untreated hearing loss can cause your hearing to get used to a quieter environment and your brain can grow out of practice. So your brain will have to deal with a substantial increase of new auditory information when you get new hearing aids. Practically, this often means that your brain can’t process those sounds as well as it generally does (at least, not at first). Consequently, auditory training frequently becomes a helpful exercise. Also, for individuals who are dealing with auditory processing disorders or have language learning challenges, auditory training can be a useful tool.
Another perspective: Audio books won’t really make you hear clearer, but they will help you better understand what you’re hearing.
When you listen to audiobooks, what happens?
Auditory training was designed to help your brain get accustomed to making sense out of sounds again. If you think about it, humans have a really complex relationship with noise. Every single sound signifies something. It’s a lot for your brain to manage. The idea is that audiobooks are an excellent way to help your brain get accustomed to that process again, especially if you’re breaking in a brand-new set of hearing aids.
Audiobooks can assist with your auditory training in a few different ways, including the following:
- Improvements of focus: With some help from your audiobook, you’ll remain focused and involved for longer periods of time. After all, if you’re getting used to a new pair of hearing aids, it might have been a while since you last engaged in and listened to a full conversation. An audiobook can give you some practice in remaining focused and tuned in.
- Listening comprehension: It’s one thing to hear speech, it’s another to comprehend it! When you follow along with the story that the narrator is reading, you will get practice differentiating speech. Your brain needs practice helping concepts take root in your mind by practicing linking those ideas to words. This can help you follow conversations more closely in your everyday life.
- A bigger vocabulary: Most individuals would love to broaden their vocabulary. The more words you’re exposed to, the bigger your vocabulary will become. Surprise your friends by throwing out amazingly apt words. Maybe those french fries look dubious, or you’re concerned that bringing your friends along to the bar will really exacerbate your issues with your boyfriend. Either way, audiobooks can help you pick the right word for the right situation.
- Improvements in pronunciation: In some cases, it’s not only the hearing part that can need a little practice. Hearing loss can often bring about social isolation which can cause communication skills to atrophy. Audiobooks can make communication a lot easier by helping you get a grip on pronunciation.
- Perception of speech: When you listen to an audiobook, you get real-time practice understanding somebody else’s speech. During normal conversations, however, you will have far less control than you will with an audiobook. You can rewind if you don’t understand something and listen to something as many times as you want to. It’s the perfect way to practice understanding words!
Audiobooks as auditory aids
Reading along with a physical copy of your audiobook is highly advisable. This will help make those linguistic associations stronger in your brain, and your brain could adapt more quickly to the new auditory signals. In essence, it’s a great way to bolster your auditory training. Because hearing aids are enhanced by audiobooks.
Audiobooks are also great because they are pretty easy to come by these days. You can subscribe to them on an app called Audible. You can easily purchase them from Amazon or other online sellers. And you can hear them at any time on your phone.
And you can also get podcasts on nearly every topic in case you can’t find an audiobook you feel like listening to. You can sharpen your hearing and enrich your mind at the same time!
Can I listen to audiobooks with my hearing aids
Bluetooth capability is a feature that is included with many modern hearing aids. This means you can connect your hearing aids with your phone, your speakers, your television, or any other Bluetooth-equipped device. With this, when you listen to an audiobook, you won’t need uncomfortable headphones over your hearing aids. You can utilize your hearing aids for this instead.
This creates a simpler process and a better quality sound.
Ask us about how audiobooks can help with your auditory training
So if you think your hearing may be starting to go, or you’re concerned about getting accustomed to your hearing aids, talk to us about audiobooks.