People with complete or substantial hearing loss are referred to as hearing-impaired, although this may be viewed as offensive as it establishes “hearing” as the norm and “impaired” as falling short of that norm; a synonym for hearing-impaired, such as “hard of hearing,” may be preferred. The term hearing-impaired encompasses a range of degrees of severity, from mild hearing loss to complete deafness. Television programming and DVDs often offer closed captioning for the hearing-impaired, in which text appears on the screen to represent all audio content, not just spoken dialogue (including sound effects, background noise, etc.)

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