Last Modified: 9:26am 04/05/2022

Deaf Awareness Week – 2nd-8th May 2022


Deaf Awareness Week is an annual event that will next take place on the 2nd-8th May 2022. Each year, the event focuses on a theme. The theme for 2022 is INCLUSION.

Deafness and hearing loss can mean different things to different people. People use various words and terms to describe how they view their own deafness or hearing loss.

In the UK alone, there are over 10 million people living with some form of hearing loss, whether it is mild or profound.

The UK Council on Deafness  is the ‘national umbrella organisation for charities and professional bodies working in the field of deafness’. They oversee Deaf Awareness Week, helping to coordinate national and local events in the UK.

 Deaf Awareness Facts 

  • Hearing loss and deafness is defined as a hidden disability.
  • As well as BSL, there are international sign languages including American Sign Language and French Sign Language. 
  • Within the UK, there are regional variations of BSL just like there are with spoken language.
  • Lip-reading helps deaf people to understand what others are saying, but even the best lip-readers still miss up to 40% of what has been said. 
  • The Royal College of Speech & Language Therapists highlighted that the rise in the use of face masks due to the Covid-19 pandemic makes it harder for people with hearing loss to communicate.
  • Face coverings with a transparent panel over the mouth have now been created so that people can still lip-read through masks. 
  • In the UK there are 12 million adults with hearing loss. This is equivalent to around one in five adults.
  • It is estimated that there are 151,000 people in the UK who use British Sign Language and 87,000 of these are Deaf. There are at least 50,000 children who are deaf in the UK.
  • RNID estimate In the UK, more than 40% of people over 50 years old have hearing loss, rising to more than 70% of people over the age of 70.
  • There are 7.1 million adults in the UK living with tinnitus.

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