What support is available for sensory loss?

Support for people with dual sensory loss is available through social services. There is a statutory requirement for social services to identify deafblind people in their area and offer them a specialist assessment.

How do you help someone with sensory loss?


  1. Make sure you have the person’s attention before trying to communicate with them.
  2. Gently touching the top of the person’s arm is a common way of attracting their attention without startling them.
  3. Identify yourself clearly.
  4. Check that you are in the best position to communicate.

What are 3 strategies to improve communication with this patient who may have sensory loss?

Make sure you have face-to-face contact and their full attention. Talk to the person you’re communicating with, not the interpreter. Speak clearly; don’t exaggerate your facial expressions and gestures. Don’t cover your mouth.

Why is it important to value a person with sensory loss?

Having a good understanding of sensory loss in all its forms is essential in supporting these individuals effectively. This unit will give you an understanding of the range and causes of sensory loss, the potential negative impact and how effective communication can support an individual to maintain their independence.

What communication supports are available?

Supports may include:

  • Speech-Language therapy.
  • Physical therapy.
  • Occupational therapy.
  • Specialized literacy or language instruction.
  • Augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) tools or technology.
  • Low-technology communication supports, including interpreters.

Where can additional advice and support about sensory loss be obtained?

Additional advice and support Specialist referrals, e.g. low–vision clinic, ophthalmologist, deaf services. Support groups, e.g. local and national support groups.

What are sensory and physical needs?

9.1 Definition. Sensory needs, which can be hearing loss and/or visual impairment or sensory processing difficulties and physical difficulties, can occur for a variety of reasons, e.g. congenital conditions (some progressive), injury or disease.

How do you communicate with sensory loss?

Turn your face towards the person and ensure your face is well-lit so your lip movements can be easily seen. Don’t shout or over-exaggerate words or lip movements. This can actually make it harder for the person to understand you. Speak clearly and slightly slower, but keep the natural rhythms of your speech.

What is a good strategy for communicating with a person who has a hearing loss?

Speak clearly, slowly, distinctly, but naturally, without shouting or exaggerating mouth movements. Shouting distorts the sound of speech and may make speech reading more difficult. Say the person’s name before beginning a conversation.

What factors impact on an individual with sensory loss?

A range of factors can impact individuals with sensory loss, such as blind or partly sighted individuals struggle to read peoples facial expressions, which are important for communication. Written communication can also be problematic for partly sighted individuals. Larger font may help overcome these issues.

What support services can help an individual communicate more effectively?

A number of additional key experts available to support individuals with their communication needs include speech and language therapists, interpreters, translators, and clinical psychologists or counsellors.

What are communication support services?

Communication support is provided by Communication Professionals (or Language Service Professionals) for hard of hearing, deaf, deafened, Deaf and deafblind people in situations such as a work meeting, job interview, GP consultation, courtroom etc.

What can I do to help someone with sensory loss?

Visual impairment rehabilitation programmes. Mobility training to give a person with a sensory loss the confidence and skills to go out independently. A care needs assessment of social care need (where appropriate). Support to access benefits, welfare rights, debt and housing advice.

Are there national organisations for people with sensory disabilities?

National organisations for people with sensory disabilities. Visual impairment Royal National Institute of Blind People RNIB is the UK’s leading charity offering information, support and advice to over two million people with sight loss.

When to see a GP for sensory loss?

Early intervention and support can make a significant difference to the impact a sensory loss has on a person’s life. If you are experiencing sensory loss we strongly recommend you see your GP as soon as possible and contact the Sensory Service to discuss your needs.

What can sense do to help older people?

Sense has produced a resource for healthcare staff, It All Adds Up, to help them to identify and support patients with sensory impairments. Our Seeing Me booklet is a guide to sight and hearing loss designed for care professionals working with older people.