Since the pandemic began, we have been having more and more important conversations about mental health, especially around our children. You may wonder how hearing loss impacts mental health. As of 2019, about 20% of the world’s population has some form of hearing loss. A little over 15% of those people are kids.
What is anxiety?
The American Psychological Association defines anxiety as an emotion that is characterized by feelings of tension, worried thoughts, and physical changes. It is also considered a persistent heightened state of alert. Sometimes this can be a normal reaction to stressful situations and sometimes spirals into a disorder in itself.
What does it look like?
Anxiety can trigger physical symptoms such as nausea, dizziness, muscle aches, insomnia, and trouble concentrating, which may impact students’ quality of life and ability to perform and participate in school activities.
Hearing loss and anxiety
Language deprivation is a...
We all know that literacy is a huge part of success in the classroom, right? Students are more likely to transfer literacy learning to real life and the future if they are engaged in relevant learning opportunities (Morrow and Gambrell). One way that we can blend literacy opportunities with meaningful content while also building up our deaf and hard of hearing students’ self identity, advocacy, and awareness, is by including books with deaf characters into our sessions and sharing these resources with families. This is especially important for our students that may be more isolated in schools or programs without deaf peers, or who live at home with family members that are all hearing or maybe don’t use ASL like they do.
A few years ago, I started my Amazon wishlist, as many other teachers did, and I filled my list with books with deaf characters after discovering Taylor Thomas and Emily Manson’s really comprehensive Google Sheet filled with books,...
I recently spoke to teachers and family members in New York about meeting the social needs of Deaf and Hard of Hearing students. This is a topic that I am passionate about and one that is a special challenge - especially for students who are mainstreamed.
I'm passionate about this topic because of the statistics of mental health for deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals. Let's take a look at them:
Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing:
* Are 1.5 times more likely to feel left out
* Have a 25% higher incidence of loneliness
* Are 1.46 times more likely to experience mental problems
* Are 28% more likely to find overall mental health fair or poor
Why are students who are deaf or hard-of-hearing more likely to experience these feelings of isolation?
Lack of access to people and missing what's going on around you can create feelings of isolation. For many students who are deaf or...