By Cameron Dicieri, student of the Master in Clinical Audiology and Hearing Therapy

Abstract

Hearing loss has long been a stigma which has been linked to depression and anxiety, it originates from how a person hears in social occasions, where the increase in background noise makes it increasingly difficult to hear and interpret speech. This is where hearing aids have been used to help increase speech recognition. However, even with the advancements in technology there is still room for improvement. Auditory training could be the solution and has been offered to people with hearing loss for many years, but is not seen as cost effective to provide in professional clinics and can have inconsistent results. Increasingly affordable technology and computer based auditory training programs could be included into current rehabilitation programs to help improve hearing aid users’ ability to understand speech in noise.

In this study we undertake a review of current literature that investigates auditory training programs provided to adult participants with hearing loss fitted with hearing aids to understand if there is an improvement in speech understanding and recognition in noise. This review looked at studies that included a cross-over pilot, randomised controlled trials and repeated measures. Forty articles were found in relation to auditory training of which sixteen were evaluated and five selected for this review. The articles reviewed showed a mixed set of results with the benefits of auditory training for hearing aid users showing some improvement, however the evidence is low. Future research is needed with a larger number of participants, to determine whether auditory training is beneficial for hearing aid users and if it can be implemented effectively in a professional clinical practice. 

Download the full research study here: Cameron Dicieri (2020). Is There Benefit for Auditory Training with Hearing Aid Users. SAERA

 

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