Hello and welcome back to part two of the deaf guide!
Today I'm going to cover Terminology and general words associated with Deafness and its culture!
This isn't exhaustive, there are so many ways and words to describe things these days so if you hear of something, please let me know and I will post it!
In the past, previous generations used words to describe being deaf, these days those words are no longer widely accepted.
Such words are -
Deaf-mute - this was used to describe deaf person who could not talk, it is now no longer used as Deaf People can learn to talk and some, very well (like myself I've been told.)
Deaf and Dumb - argh...i hate this one, this also means not able to talk but over time the word "dumb" implied to someone's intelligence...disabled or not, it isn't right to assume someone is of a lesser intelligence! Like i say - "Deaf not stupid!"
Speech Impaired/orally Handicapped/orally impaired - was used to to describe someone who couldn't talk/talk well. It is sometimes still used today but more in the medical capacity such as in speech therapy.
Suffering/inflicted/impaired - these words used to describe a deaf person's disability i.e "she is suffering from being hearing impaired." A lot of deaf people don't like this as it makes them feel like people need to feel sorry for them and it makes them sound "ill" or "diseased".
These words you will hear frequently today.
Hearing Impaired - this is a bit of a hot potato with deaf people as hearing impaired implies to someone who has a mild-medium hearing lost or became deaf due to age or accident ie. They weren't born deaf and have learnt to speak and communicate before losing their hearing.
Deaf people in themselves prefer to be called Deaf or Disabled, as being deaf from birth/circumstances similar hosts a different set of problems to ones a hearing impaired person would encounter.
The best way around this is asking the person what they would be preferred to be known as, they will tell you! At first glance people assume I'm hearing impaired as i speak and communicate very well, but I'm actually deaf as i was born deaf and head to learn to talk and sign as a child.
Profoundly deaf - When you hear someone being referred to as profoundly deaf, it means they have next to no ability to hear anything, virtually no sounds can be heard. There is deaf and profoundly deaf, often distinguished by the amount of decibels the person has missing. If it is over 90 Decibels or more, then often a person falls into the profoundly deaf catergory. I myself am profoundly deaf. Without my hearing aids in or any other equipment around to help, I will hear nothing.
These are the common major words used, or were used.
Please feel free to send me a message or leave a comment if you come across any more or you have any general questions! I be happy to answer!