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First Person Report: The Lombard Effect | The Hearing Blog
This short blog post by our pal Chev Petersen of Fish Hoek, Cape Town perfectly illustrates the Lombard Effect: Basically, it's a reflexive action where we raise our voices to a level to overcome background noises, relying on how we hear our own voice to set the level and pitch. When sensorineural hearing loss is present, the person can't hear their own voice at the proper level, which is why many hearing impaired people talk loudly when they are not wearing their hearing aids. Interestingly, for the 5% of people who have a conductive hearing loss, the Lombard Effect also comes into play, but in the opposite direction: Because of the mechanical loss, similar to wearing earplugs, these people still hear their own voice via bone conduction at the proper level, but because ambient sounds are attenuated, these people speak softly when it's noisy -- That's a tip-off to the clinician to pay close attention to the tympanometry and air-bone gaps. Here's Chev's article in its' entirety: In our