November 26, 2012
Analysis of Experiences/Expressions of Hearing Loss
About 37 million people, in America, are affected by a hearing loss of some kind (Hearing loss, 2011). Only about 15 percent of those affected actually get treated for their hearing loss, no matter how mild or severe (Brody, 2012). This means people are either in denial about the hearing loss or are not aware that they have one. In order to properly analyze the experience of having a hearing loss, I wore earplugs for 8 hours in activities I would do on a normal basis. Some of these activities include attending class, doing homework, shopping, eating at a restaurant, watching TV, and hanging out with my roommates. Wearing the earplugs simulated me having conductive hearing loss, a type of hearing loss in which sounds is not well conducted from the ear canal to the eardrum and middle ear bones (Conductive hearing loss, 2011). The degree of hearing loss simulated is mild, which means that speech understanding is reduced, especially in noisy environments (Hearing loss, 2011). This experience gave me a little insight on how people’s lives can become more complicated by having a hearing loss. In my first activity with the earplugs in, I attended one of my regularly schedule classes. This class is in a decent sized lecture hall, where the professor was standing at least 50 feet away from where I was sitting. Normally in this class I would listen to the professor speak as I wrote down notes in my notebook. Because the earplugs hindered my listening ability, I was forced to stare at the professor throughout the class to even remotely hear what he was saying. I began trying to read his lips to help understand more of what he was saying, but when I did this I was not retaining the information he was saying out loud. I became very frustrated very quickly and realized I had not really learned much in this lecture. Next, I attempted to complete some homework back at my apartment....
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