• Continental Interpreting

3 Relevant Terms for Deaf Awareness Month

Updated: Sep 10


What is the difference between Deaf and deaf and why do you sometimes come across the term D/deaf?


September is Deaf Awareness Month, and we think this is a good opportunity to learn some new terms.


For instance, the use of D/deaf is an inclusive term that combines two common terms with which people who are deaf identify.


Here are some definitions that will help enlighten you on these terms and more.


Deaf (capitalized) People who use this term identify as not only deaf but a member of the Deaf community. The capitalized term is used to identify people who not only are deaf, but culturally identify with being deaf.


deaf (not capitalized) This is a term used to describe people who are deaf, or have the medical condition of hearing loss. Someone who is deaf may not necessarily identify with it at a cultural level, or choose to not use the capitalized term.


Hard-of-Hearing The term is used to describe people who have mild to moderate hearing loss. Someone who is deaf may use this term to describe their condition, if that is the term they identify with the most.


What about Hearing-impaired? According to the National Association of the Deaf, the term is generally no longer a term accepted by deaf people. This is because of the negative connotations of the word “impaired.”


You can learn more about these terms by visiting the National Association of the Deaf.

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