Training Your Hearing (LACE)
Train your brain:
We know that we hear with our ears but what most people don’t know is that we understand what we hear with our brain. Our ear is our sensory organ that detects and transmits sounds to the auditory part of our brain, the area called the auditory cortex. After age 30 our auditory cortex has more difficulty filtering sound when in background noise, following rapid speech and remembering what we hear. This is due to natural age related changes in our brains. When we have hearing loss on top of this, it is even more difficult to successfully do all of these important listening tasks.
An excellent listening discrimination training program has been developed which can help work on improving our listening skills. This program is called L.A.C.E., listening and communication enhancement. We highly recommend that our patients with hearing loss OR those who simply have difficulty listening in background noise, complete this effective program.
LACE is an acronym for Listening And Communication Enhancement. Conceived by leading audiologists at the University of California at San Francisco, LACE is an interactive computerized aural rehabilitation program that has already helped thousands of people who live with some degree of hearing loss increase their listening skills by up to 45%.
We don’t really hear in our ears; we hear in our brain. Hearing aids can help a person detect softer sounds, but they don’t necessarily provide good listening skills.
Even people with normal hearing can be poor listeners. Good listening skills is one of the essential components in effective communication.
Other components include rapid thought processing, auditory memory, use of language skills, and interactive strategies. Additionally, the confidence that what you thought you heard was what was actually spoken is vital.
These abilities can be damaged both by hearing loss and by the natural aging process. LACE is designed to enhance the ability to communicate by training the brain to best utilize these skills.
Just as physical therapy can help rebuild muscles and adjust movements to compensate for physical weakness or injury, LACE will help you develop skills and strategies to deal with situations when hearing is inadequate. Whether you wear hearing aids, are just acquiring aids, or simply wish to improve your listening skills, LACE training will help you get the most out of the sounds of life.
Research (Song et al., 2011) showed that participants who completed LACE training showed enhanced/quickened brain response to the initial portion of sounds.
LACE is available for home based computer systems as well as for online with your iPad.
Contact us for a listening in noise assessment and consultation about LACE training.
Listening in Noise Quiz:
- Do you have significantly more difficulty listening in background noise than in quiet?
- Do you miss what’s being said in restaurants?
- Do you have trouble focusing on one person’s voice at a time?
- Do you have trouble following voices with accents?
- Do you have trouble following people who speak very quickly?
- Do you avoid group situations because it is hard to understand what people say?
If you answer YES to two or more of these questions, come into our clinic for an assessment of your listening in noise skills to see if LACE may be able to help you. Contact us for more information.