Improving Mental Health For People With Hearing Loss

Accessing mental health services can be difficult for people suffering from deafness and hearing loss.

Action on Hearing Loss has discovered that a significant percentage of people with hearing loss faced problems when trying to use these kinds of services.

Recent research carried out by the organisation - formerly known as the RNID - found that:

  • 35% experienced difficulty communicating with their GP or practice nurse
  • 15% avoid going to see their GP because of communication problems with this proportion doubling among British Sign Language (BSL) users
  • 35% of the deaf and hard of hearing had been left unclear about their condition because of communication problems with their GP or practice nurse
  • 24% of patients missed appointments because of poor communication including not being able to hear staff calling out their name

The findings raise the issue of how mental health problems are detected amongst deaf people - especially at an early stage - and how they are referred to appropriate mental health services.

Mental health services can be made more accessible to people with hearing loss through various means and you can find out more about how you can help from a professional perspective by reading our latest Information Sheet 14.

The Sheet outlines everything from communication tips through to helping make services more accessible for the hard of hearing and we'll be expanding on these subjects with blog posts next week.

Each of our Information Sheets have been developed to provide valuable information, training and support tools on primary care mental health in Wales and can be downloaded from our Information Sheets page.

If you have any questions about Information Sheet 14 or any other queries please contact our Project Manager Lesley Hills via email at or on 029 2050 4516.