The connection between what we hear and what we see has long been known. Certain principles have been studied and noted for decades. Why the two differing senses are connected, as well as how they are connected, have recently been studied. The results are surprising and overthrow some previously theorized ideas. Here is a glimpse of what some of these studies have yielded.

Above all, the studies conducted on patients have shown the same conclusive information – what you hear can be overridden by what you see. Vision and hearing are so linked, that experts suggest that speech recognition and hearing devices would be enhanced simply by adding cameras. Researchers had four participants in one study where these findings were encountered.

Video and audio feeds were shown to the patients while monitoring brain activity. Certain feeds matched audio to video, but others had the audio and video differing. During careful examination of brain activity, while hearing exercises were conducted with video confirmation, the result showed a strong connection between hearing and vision. Interestingly enough, it is vision that overrides what one hears. In trials where a patient heard one thing but the visual cue was for another, the visual is what the brain processed. The brain is wired to virtually ignore the message it receives from the auditory system if it conflicts with the visual. Visual cues, therefore, help people identify certain sounds and play a major role in communication. This strong leaning to the visual has brought to about some questions in regards to language and communication.

These findings have researchers and linguistic experts hoping for a better understanding of language development in humans and infants. Speech recognition through movements, such as that of the body and lips, greatly aids in the learning of a language. Speech and other linguistic disorders can be better understood and possibly treated in light of such information.