Thursday, 23rd September 2021 State of the Art Johannes Fellinger 03:00pm - 03:45pm Room: Humboldt

Mental health of deaf people with intellectual disabilities

One out of five deaf people has special needs, mainly intellectual disabilities (ID). Almost half of the population with special needs in learning and mobility has hearing problems, which often stay unattended. Many of them have no access to sign language and live quite isolated in hearing and speaking environments, either with their relatives or in institutions for people with ID. Miscommunication is frequently the reason for challenging behaviour in this vulnerable population.

In addition to existing literature, a thorough description of a deaf population with ID (N=61) gives insight into different aspects of their mental health. This includes analysis of their cognitive, language and socio-emotional development, their clinical diagnoses and their Quality of Life.

In providing support and care for individuals who are deaf and have an intellectual disability various aspects have to be taken into account in order to guarantee their human rights in communication and social participation. A model of a therapeutic community, established to meet the specific needs of the target group is presented.