For fun, I thought I would share some of the myths I have learned over the years about hearing loss and deafness.
Myth #1: Hearing aids and cochlear implants cure deafness. Truth: Hearing aids and cochlear implants help improve hearing, but they don’t restore lost hearing.
Myth #2: People who are deaf or hard of hearing can’t enjoy music, phone conversations or live entertainment. Truth: Because of captioning, assistive listening devices, and sign language interpreters, a person doesn’t have to hear perfectly to enjoy sound. Plus, many of us can still feel the sound vibrations of music and live entertainment, which enhances our enjoyment of it.
Myth #3: In order to communicate with someone who can’t hear well or at all, sign language is a must. Truth: Sign language can help with communication. However, many hard of hearing people may not know how to sign or been given the opportunity to practice using it.
Myth #4: It’s hard to communicate with the hard of hearing, so why try? Truth: Instead, tell them to use the GATS Code…
G - Gently get my attention before you begin talking.
A - Always face me while you speak so I can read your lips.
T - Talk to me in a quiet room where it is easier for me to hear.
S - Speak slowly and with good enunciation.
Myth #5: You’re not really deaf or hard of hearing. You’re just tuning me out. Truth: Anyone who accuses me of not having hearing loss should try this experiment. Place two cotton balls in each ear, go into a noisy room, and try to listen to a conversation with a person standing 20 feet away and with his face turned away. Difficult, huh? Welcome to my world!
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Shanna Groves was diagnosed with progressive hearing loss after the birth of her first child. She was 27. Raised in a hearing family, Shanna traces her hearing loss to a genetic loss on the paternal side of her family. She is mom to three young children, a published author, and speaker. Her books are featured at www.ShannaGroves.com. Shanna blogs about being a hard of hearing mom at http://LipreadingMom.com.