Deafblind Awareness week

Did you know that sight and hearing loss impacts more than 450,000 people in the UK? That’s why this week (aka Deafblind Awareness Week) we’re helping spread awareness of dual sensory impairments. Carry on reading to find out how you can get involved too!

What is deafblindness? 

Deafblindness is when an individual experiences significant impairments in both vision and hearing, leading to significant challenges in communication, mobility, and accessing information.

While deafblindness typically affects people later on in life, it can also happen to babies and children. It can come on gradually, sometimes so much so that the individual may not even realise that their sight and/or hearing is deteriorating.

What are the signs of deafblindness? 

  • Finding it difficult to follow the conversation/having to ask people to repeat themselves

  • Needing to turn the TV/radio/phone volume up

  • Difficulty reading small print/having to bring the text closer

  • Missing important audio cues like the doorbell or your phone ringing

What causes deafblindness?

There are a number of conditions/circumstances that can lead to deafblindness, including:

  • Diabetic retinopathy

  • Old age e.g. cataracts and glaucoma

  • Genetics

  • Cerebral palsy

  • Infections picked up during pregnancy e.g. measles

When to get help

If you notice your eyesight or hearing getting worse then it is important to see your GP to get to the root of the problem and get treated as soon as possible.

How can I get involved this Deafblind Awareness Week? 

  • Promote #DeafAwarenessWeek on social media by sharing key facts to help educate others and spread awareness

  • Advocate for deafblind colleagues and clients e.g. do they have the resources they need? Are their accessibility needs being met?

  • Find out your colleagues’ preferred methods of communication so they feel supported and accommodated for in the workplace

  • Consider bringing in an interpreter for presentations and meetings

If you’re looking for a new challenge in healthcare, get in touch with our recruiters via email at [email protected]. We offer roles across the sector, including radiology, physiotherapy and occupational therapy so reach out today!

To find out more about how to communicate with deaf patients, check out our blog post here.