Back in the old days they were called “books-on-tape”. Back then, obviously, we didn’t even have CDs let alone streaming services. Today, they have a much better name; audiobooks.
An audiobook allows you to read a book by, well, listening to it. It’s sort of like when you were a kid and a teacher or parent read to you. You can engage with new ideas, get swept away in a story, or learn something new. Listening to audiobooks when you’re passing time will be a mind enriching experience.
And they’re also a terrific tool for audio training.
What’s auditory training?
Wait, wait, wait, what’s this auditory training thing, you ask? It sounds complex and an awful lot like school.
As a skilled form of listening, auditory training is created to give you a stronger ability to perceive, process, and comprehend sounds (medically known as “auditory information”). One of the main uses of auditory training is to help individuals learn to hear with their new hearing aids.
That’s because when you have untreated hearing loss, your brain can gradually grow out of practice. (Your auditory centers become used to living in a quieter environment.) So when you get a new set of hearing aids, your brain abruptly has to cope with an influx of extra information. Practically, this usually means that your brain can’t process those sounds as well as it normally does (at least, not initially). Auditory training can be a practical tool to help deal with this. Also, for those who are dealing with auditory processing disorders or have language learning challenges, auditory training can be a useful tool.
Another perspective: It’s not really that audiobooks can sharpen your hearing, it’s that they can help you better distinguish what you hear.
When you listen to audiobooks, what happens?
Auditory training was created to help your brain get accustomed to making sense out of sounds again. Humans have a pretty complex relationship with noise if you really think about it. Every sound you hear has some significance. It’s a lot for your brain to absorb. So if you’re breaking in a new set of hearing aids, listening to audiobooks can help your brain get used to hearing and understanding again.
Audiobooks can assist with your auditory training in a few different ways, including the following:
- Improvements in pronunciation: In some cases, it isn’t just the hearing part that can need some practice. Those who suffer with hearing loss often also deal with social isolation, and that can make their communication skills a bit out of practice. Audiobooks can help you get a handle on the pronunciation of words, making basic communication a lot smoother!
- Improvements of focus: You’ll be able to pay attention longer, with some help from your audiobook friends. Maybe it’s been some time since you’ve been able to take part in a complete conversation, particularly if you’re getting used to a new pair of hearing aids. An audiobook can give you some practice in remaining focused and tuned in.
- 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 that guy sitting outside the bar looks innocuous, or your meal at that restaurant is sumptuous. Either way, audiobooks can help you find the right word for the right situation.
- Listening comprehension: It’s one thing to perceive speech, it’s another to comprehend it! Audiobooks give you practice digesting and understanding what is being spoken about. Your brain requires practice helping ideas take root in your mind by practicing joining those ideas to words. This can help you follow conversations more closely in your daily life.
- Perception of speech: When you listen to an audiobook, you gain real-time practice understanding somebody else’s speech. During normal conversations, however, you will have far less control than you get with an audiobook. You can listen to sentences as many times as you need to in order to distinguish them. This works quite well for practicing following words.
Audiobooks as auditory aids
WE suggest that, as you listen to your audiobook, you also read along with a physical copy of the book as well. This will help make those linguistic connections stronger in your brain, and your brain could adapt more quickly to the new auditory signals. In other words, it’s the perfect way to bolster your auditory training. That’s because audiobooks complement hearing aids.
It’s also very easy to get thousands of audiobooks. There’s an app called Audible which you can get a subscription to. Many online vendors sell them, and that includes Amazon. And you can hear them at any time on your phone.
And you can also get podcasts on pretty much every topic in case you can’t find an audiobook you want to listen to. You can improve your hearing and improve your mind at the same time!
Can I listen to audiobooks through my hearing aids
Bluetooth capability is a feature that is included with many contemporary hearing aids. So all of your Bluetooth-equipped devices, including your phone, your tv, and your speakers, can be paired with your hearing aids. This means you don’t need to put cumbersome headphones over your hearing aids just to listen to an audiobook. You can utilize your hearing aids for this instead.
You’ll now get superior sound quality and greater convenience.
Talk to us about audiobooks
So if you think your hearing might be on the way out, or you’re uneasy about getting accustomed to your hearing aids, consult us about audiobooks.