Examples: Deaf, Deafened, Hard of Hearing or Hearing Impaired


“Deaf” usually refers to a hearing loss so severe that there is very little or no functional hearing.


“Deafened” usually refers to a person who becomes deaf as an adult and, therefore, faces different challenges than those of a person who was born deaf or became deaf as a child.

Hard of hearing

“Hard of hearing” refers to a hearing loss where there may be enough residual hearing that an auditory device, such as a hearing aid or FM system, provides adequate assistance to process speech.

Hearing Impaired

“Hearing impaired” is often used to describe people with any degree of hearing loss, from mild to profound, including those who are deaf and those who are hard of hearing.

Many individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing actually prefer the terms deaf and hard of hearing, because they consider them to be more positive than the term hearing impaired, which implies a deficit or that something is wrong that makes a person less than whole.

Deaf, deafened and hard of hearing individuals may choose to use hearing aids, cochlear implants and/or other assistive listening devices to boost available hearing. Alternatively, or in addition, they may read lips, use sign language, sign language interpreters and/or captioning.

Source: University of Washington

Related Stories

Brain Injuries

From cerebral palsy to traumatic brain injury to post traumatic stress disorder, learn more about different types of brain injuries.

Examples: Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), Post Traumatic Stress Injury (PTSI) Brain Injury or Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Brain Injury or Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) may result from a blow or…

Read More

Learning Disabilities

Learn more about learning and attention issues, such as ADHD, Dyslexia, Dyscalculia, Dysgraphia, and Executive Functioning Issues.

Examples: ADHD, Dyslexia, Dyscalculia, Dysgraphia, Executive Functioning Issues ADHD (Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder) ADHD (Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder) is a biological condition that makes it hard for many individuals to sit still…

Read More

Medical and Neurological Issues

Learn more about medical and neurological issues, including cancer, diabetes, epilepsy, HIV/AIDS, and multiple sclerosis.

Examples: Cancer, Diabetes, Epilepsy, HIV/AIDS, Multiple Sclerosis Cancer In all types of cancer, some of the body’s cells begin to divide without stopping and spread into surrounding tissues. Cancer can…

Read More