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Hearing Aid Heroes: Marlee Matlin

Marlee Matlin

Her hearing loss was never something that held back our Hearing Aid Hero Marlee Matlin. This amazing woman has overcome the hurdle of nearly complete deafness to lead a full acting career, has become a published author multiple times, and has used her celebrity status to advocate for others who struggle with hearing loss.

For all that and more, Marlee Matlin is this month’s highlighted Hearing Aid Hero by Hearing & Balance Doctors.

Marlee Matlin: Award-Winning Actress And Advocate For The Hearing Impaired

Born to a hearing family, by the time Matlin was 18 months old, she had lost all the hearing in her right ear and had 80% hearing loss in her left ear. She started wearing hearing aids when she was young to help her navigate attending a regular public school.

With the help of family and other supportive people, Matlin learned to converse both verbally and in American Sign Language, which served her well during her first film role, Children of a Lesser God. At just 21 years old, Matlin’s first movie role landed her an Academy Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role. To this day, Matlin is still the only deaf actor who has won an Academy Award.

From there, Matlin would have many more film, television, and stage roles. She has also written and published four books. Along with her career work, Matlin has been an active advocate for the deaf and hard-of-hearing, partnering with organizations like the Starkey Hearing Foundation and the Americans Civil Liberties Union.

Marlee Matlin’s Stance On Hearing Aids

Some people choose to resist hearing aids, but Matlin has always had only good things to say about hearing aids. She has cited in many interviews that she would be completely deaf if she chose to not wear her hearing aids. With them on, Matlin has said she is able to capture enough sound to active understand other with a combination of speech reading and sound clues.

As Matlin grew up with profound hearing loss, she never gained the speech recognition those of us without hearing loss take for granted, which is why hearing aids aren’t her sole solution to hearing loss. Yet, in a moving letter to advice columnist Ann Landers, Matlin said, “It may be true that life is challenging when you are unable to hear, but believe me when I say the real “handicap” of deafness does not lie in the ear, it lies in the mind.”

With that in mind, it makes sense why Matlin has always striven to help remove any external barrier that may face the deaf and hard-of-hearing.

Find Your Ideal Hearing Aids At Hearing & Balance Doctors

If you are ready to embrace your inner Hearing Aid Hero and take control over your hearing loss, contact us to start working with our doctors of audiology.

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