Read about a study by Pascale Tremblay published by Jean Hamann on ULaval News:
Why do older people make you repeat so much? Hearing loss is only part of the reason for language comprehension problems that occur with age
If your grandparents struggle to understand when you talk to them, it’s partly because their hearing is failing, but that decline doesn’t explain the whole story. A study published in the journal Neuropsychologia by the team of Pascale Tremblay, from the Department of Rehabilitation and the CERVO Research Center at Laval University, shows that the ability to use visual language cues and integrate them with auditory cues may also be at fault.
“Even if we don’t make a conscious effort to read the lips of people who are talking to us, our brains use visual cues like these to understand what they are saying. This is especially important when someone is talking to us in a low voice or when there is a lot of ambient noise,” says the researcher, who directs the Speech and Hearing Neuroscience Laboratory.