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Speaking at the Right Volume?

Sunday, July 23, 2017 10:28:35 AM Australia/Melbourne

Speaking at the Right Volume?A huge part of Hearlink’s mission is a commitment to compassion and understanding. Those impacted by hearing loss in any capacity should be treated exactly the same as those who are not. We frequently receive questions from family members and friends of our patients and customers who want to be sure that they’re being respectful when they interact and engage with those with hearing loss. Today’s post is dedicated to those readers, and a friendly reminder about a situation that we’ve all probably been in. Remember the last time you were speaking loudly to overcome environmental noise? When suddenly… the room went silent and you sounded like you were shouting? Insert cringe. We’ve all been there. It’s an interesting opportunity to level-set and determine, am I speaking at the right volume?


Best case scenario, those around you will inform you if you’re speaking at an inopportune volume. But if you’re deaf or impacted by hearing loss and someone looks like they’re shouting at you, it can be uncomfortable for both parties. We recommend that you engage with those with hearing loss, as you would any other family member or friend. If they’re familiar with lip-reading, your volume won’t help them either way. If they’re not, and they haven’t specifically requested that you speak to them with more pronounced tone, doing so has the potential to make them very uncomfortable.


Did you know that the volume at which we speak is determined by three variables? They are biology, age and culture. Biology speaks to the size of the larynx and the girth of the vocal cords. The stronger and larger both are, the greater volume your voice can achieve. This is why, historically, males are known for speaking more loudly than their female counterparts. Age plays an important role as well. At more mature ages, our vocal cords are not as pliable. They also vibrate at lower frequencies, which means that our voices are quieter. Culture comes as a surprise to many. But think about your family growing up. Were there many of you, jostling for position in a conversation. If so, it would make sense that you would put more effort into speaking loudly. Just remember to be aware of this, as you go through life, interacting with different size groups.


Don’t let this information frighten you. Equipped with the right knowledge and with Hearlink as your trusty information partner-in-crime, you’ll be ready to take on any conversation. Just keep these recommendations in mind: Ask those around you if you believe that the volume of your voice is creeping higher and higher; Be ready for feedback. It may come as a surprise to learn that you’re speaking more loudly than you aimed for. Finally, try wearing hearing aids—especially if you have multiple friends with hearing impediments. It helps to walk a mile in anyone else’s shoes.


When in doubt, and as with any questions about the Hearlink mission, our advice and the services that we offer- give us a shout. We’d love to hear from you.


Posted in Industry News By

Hearlink Admin