How Can Sensory Impairments Affect Communication?


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'The Free Dictionary' defines communication as the art and technique of using words effectively in order to impart ideas or information. It is the manner by which an individual or group passes on a message to another individual or group that is effectively understood by the receiver. Verbal communication is the art of communicating using the spoken word, as opposed to writing, signals or general behavior, for instance.

According to the Speech Therapy Information and Resources website, effective verbal communication requires skills in the use of:

• Language
• Pragmatics
• Speech
• Voice
• Fluency

The integrated functioning of these five factors allows people to participate effectively in conversations in which participants rapidly alternate between speaking and listening. However, good verbal communication can break down due to a number of factors, including learning difficulties, anatomical impairments (including sensory impairments), psychological impairments and lack of opportunity.

A hearing impediment will hamper the ability to communicate verbally because of the difficulty in understanding what another person is saying to you while you are trying to listen to them.

Similarly, a visual impediment will hinder communication too. Although you will still be able to hear someone speaking, the inability to see any non-verbal communication, such as facial expressions and hand gestures, may limit the extent to which you can communicate effectively with other people.

As well as physical problems, communication can be hindered by psychological impairments. Emotional difficulties such as anxiety and phobias can affect a person's sense of well-being and impact upon their ability to interact socially and participate effectively in conversation, for instance.

Emotional difficulties are often cited as the cause for various types of speech impediments and voice difficulties that prevent a personal from speaking fluently.
More information on communication problems is available by visiting the following website:

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