Sunday, 28 July 2019

Hearing Aids and Speech

Image result for struggling with hearing aidsA quick look at one issue being talked about on UK Social media.

#1 I find myself speaking much louder when I don’t have hearing aids, or so my kids say.  The fact that I can hear myself with hearing aids regulates the loudness and tone of speech for me, I think.

#2 That's true, the level of hearing affects your spoken level of response.  I have no hearing at all but, my level of speech is perfectly acceptable and viable in mixed company, I've trained myself to do that, by watching closely other people to notice their body language and responses, if you see 'puzzlement' when you speak to people no matter how subtle it appears, then you know you are shouting or mumbling, or not understood at all, you can train yourself that way.  

HOWEVER (There is always some unavoidable issue!), I cannot monitor background noise so get caught out then.  I don't avoid such areas that is self-defeating but via a bit of humour or simply saying I cannot make you out because of that noise it's not so bad people will understand.  I do think over-confidence with a hearing aid is an issue too it means you make less effort to follow assuming the aid has captured it all.  

#3 Same with learning to lip-read, you need the aids switched OFF to manage that properly.  Of course, UK classes insist you keep them ON, which I think is the wrong way to do it.  There is no 'level playing field' between students either, so the those who can maximise their aids benefit more than those that cannot, even then, they can suffer if unfortunately, their aids are no longer of use to them, they have not attained the other skills they need to follow better, they left that to the aid..  Then and curiously, its a race to buy bigger, better or stronger hearing aids because they cannot cope with silence... and there are no areas to help them.

The Future of the Deaf Communities.

They didn't actually say WHAT that future is, only what some deaf feel it 'could be'. Whilst they debate the way forward, they still struggle with inclusion and access, some of it mainstream fault, some their own. They need to accept inclusion comes at a price, and be prepared to pay that price. As someone stated, there is a lack of inclusion and even some hostility within deaf areas in accepting other deaf e.g. oralists, and the diversity that is the people within it and there was an issue with the more able deaf failing to include the lesser able and leaving them behind.  The deaf aren't a unified area, exposing perhaps the fact sign is the ONLY unifying factor, and believing that is enough.

It was clear, some system areas feel the cultural aspect is a drive to take over deaf education and indoctrinate.  Overall, the drive from those on the video is to maintain the isolatory status quo and encourage independence of the mainstream not include themselves within it.  Mainly because they feel as a 'linguistic minority' that will lose that.  Around the world, such areas that pursue such directions, without compromise fail or become secular and more isolated.

Areas in the 'third world' look like areas in the old world before better education and acceptances were created, today advances in communications mean that will change more rapidly than it did before.  From 1880 to the 1950s the UK deaf community was huge, but access and better health support has pretty much eliminated all that.  We doubt modern deaf with all that is becoming available want a return to the old ways of doing things or, the old ways of communicating either.  Clubs/deaf schools are in rapid decline, and they are the 'community'.  The third world is apparently trying to recreate that can it succeed?  Maybe for a while by sheer numbers but....

Deaf man in Bomb Hoax against US/UK/Canada.

A deaf man has appeared in court accused of conducting a campaign of bomb hoaxes against targets in the US, Canada and the UK, including the Houses of Parliament, the Super Bowl and dozens of schools
A deaf man has appeared in court accused of conducting a campaign of bomb hoaxes against targets in the US, Canada and the UK, including the Houses of Parliament, the Super Bowl and dozens of schools. 

Andreas Dowling (23) faces 30 counts of communicating false information with intent between October 2014 and February 2016. The majority of the threats were against schools, but some were also made to US police stations, the court heard. At a preliminary hearing at the Old Bailey yesterday, prosecutor Simon Laws QC said the hoaxes caused "disruption and panic". 

The threats were made both online and by phone, the court heard. Dowling, of Torpoint, Cornwall, appeared at the hearing via video link from Exeter Crown Court and was assisted in the dock by a lip speaker. He is accused of making the threat to the Super Bowl - one of the biggest events in America's sporting calendar - on February 1, 2015. Dowling allegedly threatened the Houses of Parliament on February 8, 2016. He faces an additional charge of "encouraging or assisting the commission of an offence believing it would be committed" under the Protection of Children Act 1978. 

He is accused of threatening to "ruin the life" of a 17-year-old girl in the US unless she sent him nude photographs of herself. Dowling was arrested in June of this year following an investigation by Counter Terrorism Policing South West. Avon and Somerset Police said later that officers were satisfied the alleged bomb threats "were not an act of terrorism". Mr Justice Sweeney listed the case for a plea and trial preparation hearing on November 8 at a location yet to be set.