LACE: Listening and Communication Enhancement
LACE is a new, exciting and research-driven listening exercise program that provides audiologists with the ability to help clients improve their listening abilities in addition to their hearing ability. The LACE program has been shown to improve their ability to listen in background noise, listen in the presence of competing talkers, listen to degraded messages, in addition to improve auditory short-term memory in simulated lab based tasks.
Hearing aids are a large part of what Audiologists do. We depend heavily on the current technology so that clients can improve hearing in all listening conditions. Hearing aids provide audibility, or the ability to perceive certain sounds that would otherwise be missed. The ability to listen is much more layered and complex as this involves memory, inter-modality cognitive processing, and attention. However; some clients need a refresher course on how to be great listeners and communicators, and they do not necessarily improve immediately after hearing is restored to near normal levels by hearing devices. Dr. Robert Sweetow, an audiologist at the University of Californian developed LACE, a computerized software program as a way to help those with hearing loss become better at listening. Patients practice 30 minutes a day, 3 to 4 times per week, on tasks that include: Listening in background noise, auditory short term memory, and focused attention (i.e. competing talkers). The goal is to allow the client to take an active role in the hearing and listening rehabilitation, in addition to providing true improvement in real-life situations. The program adjusts the exercises based on the ability, increasing or decreasing the difficulty level as required. The program also tracks improvement on tasks allowing the client to see how their hard-work is paying off.
LACE can improve the cognitive aspects of communication in addition to introducing the client to listening strategies that can be applied in real life. The Advanced Hearing Group of Clinics is dedicated to helping our clients become more effective communicators. We recommend the use of aural rehabilitation tools in the clinic and at home which focus on improving listening abilities. our audiologists will recommend LACE as part of an overall plan for your hearing care. In addition, they will guide you through the orientation of the software and help you with any technical issues.