A deaf Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner is also available in all IAPT localities to meet the needs of the deaf communities.
Hearing loss affects around 8 million people in the United Kingdom. Around 5 million of these need a hearing aid, but are reluctant to make use of them due to the stigma they carry. Deaf individuals are also reluctant to access health services, as they can often mishear what is said to them by their practitioner. Deafness can also be misinterpreted as a learning disability, as deaf individuals can score low on verbal IQ tests; contributing towards the avoidance of appropriate services. This reflects only a small number of issues facing the deaf community.
In relation to mental health, deaf adults are often a part of a support group, yet as they grow older, health problems can result in an increase in isolation. This can contribute towards them developing mental health issues such as depression and anxiety. Here, our service can be a huge help. We can offer deaf patients a therapist who is trained in British Sign Language (BSL). We hope that this would alleviate the anxiety of getting help from our services and make the process far more enjoyable for the patient.
Here is a useful link for those who are deaf and suffer from mental health issues: