Registered Charity no. 218341  |   Telephone: 01872 225 868


Registered Charity no. 218341  |  01872 225 868  |


Deafness, the hidden disability

Are you a deaf person whose stress bucket is overflowing right now?

Tinnitus, zoom fatigue, visual overload and even accessing your GP through a screen are all having their impact. There used to be a saying, “An apple a day, keeps the doctor away!” Right now, we seem to be suffering from both Apple and “app” overload but some of them can give you a boost as well!

Here’s a few ideas:

  • In your face? – Yes, it’s true, we don’t really like looking at ourself all the time and it is actually quite tiring. Why not hide your face, in “zoom” or “teams”, so that you can concentrate on other people’s lips and, use speaker view on the gallery.
  • Don’t be embarrassed to ask for assurance that the meeting you plan to attend will offer captioning or check out the various PC options and
  • Download useful apps onto your phone that will help you such as “Live Transcribe” on android or “Petralex” or “”
  • Turn on “Closed Captions” on your windows 10 computer
  • Ask for a copy of notes and or/recording.
  • Ask for some time-out if you are struggling to absorb information (probably everyone else wants it as well!)
  • Make use of the new products like Alexa and Portals to help boost the visuals.

Invest in hearing assistive devices for conversation, phone calls etc. “Access to Work” may be able to help you with funding if you are in employment.

Apple accessibility - Accessibility Support

Did you know?

While "Attend Anywhere" is the most popular application, Zoom is an online application that can be used to run video conferences. Deaf people seem to have a clear preference for Zoom.

Video quality is superior on Zoom for people who rely on visual communication, lip reading and facial expressions. Furthermore, using split screens (not available on all video conferencing platforms) enables equal access to deaf and hearing people and allows interpreters to be visible.

While Zoom has not been assured nationally by NHS Digital as a secure video conferencing tool, their guidance is that this does not mean it should not be used. However, it is important to note that it is an organisation’s own responsibility to perform risk assessments on any products that are used and ensure that appropriate security safeguards are in place.

What the disability community can teach us about working remotely - Microsoft Accessibility Blog

Disability Answer Desk | Microsoft Accessibility

Factsheet on hearing loss and computing 

British Sign Language (BSL) users, please look for our Mental Wellbeing BSL videos:

What is mental health?

Coronavirus and mental wellbeing

Everyone has a different level of hearing loss and it can be very expensive to purchase a product which then proves to be ineffective – so please make sure you get good advice. Here are some resources/suppliers:

Bellman UK

Hearing Products International Limited 

Doorbells for people with hearing loss

Connevans Hearing assistive products

Sarabec Hearing assistive products

Portable Table-Top Loop. This is only suitable for a one-on-one conversation in close proximity. 

The Equality Act 2010 says that organisations who provide services for the public must take reasonable measures to make sure those services are accessible to disabled people including those who are deaf or hard of hearing. This normally means providing some communication support.

Induction Loop SystemsKeeping you in the loop

You may need a more comprehensive hearing loop system and need qualified technicians who are trained to install and support AFILS Induction Hearing Loop Systems. Experts at Kernow Installations, have extensive knowledge and experience providing simple and complex low-spill loops. They can  quote for the installation of Hearing Loop Equipment into Public Venues throughout Cornwall ensuring the equipment is setup correctly and fully tested.

These specialists also provide Wireless Hearing Solutions, ideal should you wish to ensure privacy within a designated space e.g. council chamber or a consultation room. This is also an ideal solution where neighbouring rooms need separate systems. This same technology is also highly suited to tour guide systems in museums and other leisure attractions.

Hearing Loss Cornwall use SignVideo to support deaf communication, see top bar of our website

Relay UK -  Everybody's talking Here is a link to information and guidance on how to use the modern Relay UK textphone system which takes over from the previous Next Generation Text.  Relay UK brings relay services for deaf, hard-of-hearing, and speech-impaired people right up to date with the latest app technology.  You don't need any special kit – just download the app from the App Store or Google Play onto your smartphone, tablet, or computer. Conversations are easy to manage and relaxed. For fluent communication with anyone, anywhere, use Relay UK. You can contact Hearing Loss Cornwall on our normal phone number simply by adding 18001 as a prefix to our normal number 01872 225868. Download Relay UK information

Bellman & Symfon

Some information about products and technology

How to connect a TV listener to your television

RNID Comparing different video conferencing

Making ZOOM accessible

Lipreading by AI - read this fascinating article

“If your reflex is everyone feels lonely sometimes, you would be right. But you would also be understating the loneliness we feel.”

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