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With mouth caps the hearing impaired is out of speech

The call for mouth caps is on the rise. Apparently, the fact that people feel safer by thinking about it is a factor. Even though its preventive effect has not been scientifically established and could also have the opposite effect through incorrect use. I really hope it won’t come to that if it isn’t really necessary.

For me as a hearing impaired person, speech impediment is essential to understand people, just do that with a mouth mask. I’m done talking. There are an estimated 1.7 million hearing impaired people in the Netherlands, not only elderly people who have to stay inside anyway. Adults, children and young people who are hearing impaired need the mouth image in addition to equipment to be able to participate. For deaf people the mouth shield is also a disaster. Anyone who has seen sign interpreter Irma Sluis at work now knows that the facial expression and the movement of the mouth are also part of the sign language. One cannot do without the other. Besides that, it seems awful to me if we can’t see each other anymore. So mouth caps? Only if it’s proven effective and in places where it makes sense. That’s hard enough as it is.

Volkskrant Reading letters Tuesday, May 5, Letter of the day

door Mariëtte Spierings, werkzaam met slechthorenden in onderwijs en zorg, Amsterdam


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