How Do You Learn to Lip Read?


Quick Answer

To learn to lip read, start paying close attention to lip movement when having conversations with others. Focus on similar words such as "you," "no," "don't" and "won't" to try to differentiate between them. Ask a friend or partner to sit with you and have conversations without using sound. Write down what you believe is said and compare, noting particular words that are mixed up.

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Full Answer

Use nonverbal cues to interpret particular words, including how the speaker's face lights up or darkens, a person's eyebrow movement or the way her head tilts. These cues create a context for particular conversations. Practice alone by sitting in front of a mirror and observing how your own lips shape certain words. Each person has mannerisms and individual lip movements, so understanding is limited to the way that person speaks. However, even if every word is not understandable, certain words and nonverbal cues help a lip reader get the gist of the conversation.

Another way to practice lip reading is to turn off the sound on your television and turn on the subtitles. Choose programming where speakers are facing the camera the majority of the time, such as news casts or talk shows. Practice comprehension, and check your abilities against the subtitles.

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