How Hearing Loss Affects Speech

Our sense of hearing plays a vital part in speech and development. Hearing may affect one’s words, sentences, speech, school success, and social skills. Certain missed sounds may delay speech development and language skills, such as reading and learning. ASHA highlights the details of how hearing loss affects children. However, we think that we can all agree that this may apply to everyone regardless of age. 

So, how does hearing affect our words? For starters, people with hearing loss may have difficulties with homonyms (when two words have the same spelling or pronunciation but have different meanings. Differentiating the word meaning for palm may be an obstacle. Are we talking about palm as in palm tree or palm as in the palm of your hand? Also, learning abstract words like beauty and success, are much harder to understand; they do not physically exist like concrete words, such as car and tree. Even making complex sentences is a challenge because of the lack of clauses used, hence using shorter sentences. Word endings, such as the past tense and possessives, are usually dropped out of the speech since they are difficult to hear. Lastly, individuals with hearing loss may not be able to hear their own voices, which may come out as mumbled or slow down the rate of speech.

Hearing loss not only affects speech but may negatively impact social behaviors and academic performance. ASHA has reported that “Children with a mild to moderate hearing loss, achieve one to four grade levels lower, on average, than their peers with normal hearing, unless appropriate management occurs.” Bringing more awareness and providing more support for those with hearing needs can affect the outcome of speech by potentially bridging the gap between missed sounds. In hopes of bridging the gap, AudioCardio’s CEO and Co-Founder was recently featured in the Talking with Tech AAC Podcast hosted by Rachel Madel, M.A., CCC – SLP. They discuss the origins of AudioCardio, their research, and the future of better hearing, speech recognition, and overall communication.

Image showing a communication board.

Rachel Madel’s Communication Board is a free resource for those struggling with a child who is minimally verbal. You can find other free resources on her website, such as Whole Body Listening, Descriptors, Articulation, Early Communication, and more!

AudioCardio is a technology company focused on hearing health and wellness. Learn how AudioCardio can help maintain and strengthen your hearing with your favorite headphones or hearing aids at