Auditory skills training, anytime, anywhere

The HearingSuccess portal is filled with online resources so those with new hearing technology can start honing their auditory skills right away.

When a person or family comes into your office for audiological support, is providing hearing technology always enough?

Probably not. Literature and research strongly suggest that we need to do more than provide the latest technology. We need to train the brain to interpret new auditory information.1-3

Auditory skills training is the process of improving auditory skills with repetitive practice using structured, targeted listening exercises. Although training programs and their results vary, offering it may…

  • Strengthen clinical outcomes
  • Facilitate adjustment to hearing devices
  • Improve quality of life

This is the reason behind an exciting resource in hearing healthcare today: HearingSuccess portal.

HearingSuccess portal – online auditory skills training resources in one place

Phonak and Advanced Bionics have come together to offer the HearingSuccess portal. It provides parents, teens and adults with a place to start before, during and after they get their hearing technology. And the resources inside the portal make it easy for hearing care professionals to recommend support resources and track progress.

The portal is filled with online auditory skills training resources and other helpful links such as product pages and online communities for those with hearing loss. All your clients have to do is go onto HearingSuccess.com and register. Once registered, the page is customized so that the resources are relevant for their needs. They get:

  • Automatic visibility of resources
  • Displayed resources are customized based on registration information
  • Easy access on a single webpage

What types of resources are available?

Resources displayed will vary, depending on age (e.g., child or adult) and the type of hearing technology used (HA or CI). For example, when parents of a young child fit with bilateral hearing aids register, they will see resources like BabyBeats™ early intervention app which is designed to develop early listening and communication skills through musical activities. They will also see links to other parent resources, parent guides and links to online communities.

And for adults with hearing loss, they will also get a customized page. They will get resources like:

SoundSuccess – an interactive dynamic functional listening program designed to build communication confidence and reinforce the brain’s ability to perceive and understand spoken language. It is unique because it gives users the ability to customize their practice. They can choose to use visual cues while listening to speakers or use listening alone. The program gives real-time feedback and tracks functional hearing status over time.

WordSuccess™ – an app designed to improve word and phrase discrimination in quiet and in noise. What is particularly appealing about this app is that it has a placement test and tracks functional hearing status over time. It offers increasing levels of difficulty and scores can be shared with you during audiological appointments so you can monitor their progress.

How can it help? Here’s a testimonial!

I recently chatted with a colleague at Sonova who uses bimodal technology (Advanced Bionics CI and Phonak hearing aid). I was telling her about our new HearingSuccess portal and she told me that she is a big fan of auditory training and uses SoundSuccess regularly. Here’s what she had to say:

“I use auditory training to improve my ability to listen with my CI and hearing aid. What I like about auditory training is it empowers me to enhance my ability to hear in various situations that I find difficult. I practice word pairs that sound similar, such as ‘bear’ and ‘pear’.

With the speech in noise module, I train my ability to focus my attention when ambient noise interferes with conversation. Because I work in a multinational/multicultural environment with many accents, training gives me the opportunity to learn the different pronunciations without the risk of missing out on important information.

And I incorporate this training into my life, just like I incorporate fitness, 3 times a week to increase my listening abilities. For a few weeks after a new CI mapping, I do auditory training almost daily to help acclimate myself to my new map. I find it helps me get up to speed faster. Over time 20-30 minute sessions a couple times a week give me enough of a workout without being exhausting or overly time consuming.”

This testimonial makes me smile. It reminds me that auditory skills training is truly like fitness training. With regular listening practice, your clients may see these same types of results and feel more confident with time! And with the auditory skills training resources in the HearingSuccess portal, there’s no limit to how much practice is possible.

How do you offer this to your clients?

This is the easy part. As a hearing care professional, simply refer your clients to Hearingsuccess.com and they will have access to a full suite of resources to help them be successful communicators.

You can ask them to share scores with you during follow-up appointments so you can monitor their progress and keep them on track with their training. And in future visits, when you ask if they feel more confident communicating with their new devices after practicing. I bet they will say yes!

 The HearingSuccess portal can be accessed at www.HearingSuccess.com

To learn more about auditory skills training and the tools in the HearingSuccess portal, we invite you to read our latest Phonak Insight, Fostering hearing success in adults by connecting them to auditory skills training resources.


Phonak Faces of Audiology

Six-word story: Lisa Bacic

Lisa was inspired by her brother who was born blind and wanted to help create a better, more accessible world for people with hearing loss.

References

  1. Olson, A.D. (2015). Options for auditory training for adults with hearing loss. Seminars in Hearing, 36(4):284–295.
  2. Ferguson, M., & Henshaw, H. (2015, November). How does auditory training work? Joined-up thinking and listening. Seminars in Hearing, 36(4), 237-249.
  3. Anderson, S., & Kraus, N. (2013). Auditory training: Evidence for neural plasticity in older adults. Perspectives on hearing and hearing disorders. Research and Research Diagnostics; 17, 37–57.

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Comments

4 thoughts on “Auditory skills training, anytime, anywhere

  1. Your article on auditory training sounds fantastic to me. I can’t wait to have a look at the resources myself and offer them to my clients. Thanks for sharing

    1. That is wonderful to hear. Hope you enjoy the exercises and listening practice brings you communication confidence. 🙂

  2. I love your blog post Lisa-really great how the HearingSuccess portal provides a ‘fitness workout’ for all types of listening, for all ages and technologies! I love that it spans both CI, HAs and both adults and kids, all in one place, and totally free of charge. Thanks so much for sharing!

    1. Thank you very much, Jane! I agree… it’s wonderful to have resources to offer everyone, regardless of technology or age.

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