Friday, November 27, 2009

New Ways for Deaf to Hear

Brain images show touch affects what you hear, raising the possibility that one sense could be used as a substitute for another, creating new ways for the deaf to hear. MIT researchers found puffs of air to the back of a hand or their neck helped subjects hear better. Details of the new study have just been released by the journal Nature. Studies of deaf-blind people who learn the Tadoma method (learning to talk and hear by placing a hand on the neck and mouth of a speaker) have already shown the tactile and auditory senses are tied together. Another recent study revealed stretching a person's facial skin affects hearing which suggests we also hear through the face.