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How Do DeafBlind People Cook?

By March 10, 2009

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I do not know the answer. How can a deafblind person who can not see well enough to use cooking equipment, cook safely and is that even possible? I recently became aware of this challenge facing deafblind people when I found out about a deafblind person who struggles with health issues because of inability to cook healthy meals. I am hoping that someone who is experienced with deafblindness has an answer for me.

March 11, 2009 at 1:37 am
(1) Deaf Pixie says:

It is very intersting!

I realized and recongized the bigger problem that many DeafBlind people have struggle and big approached to deal with their time management and could not able to find a way to management with their health issues as such as high blood pressure and other as diabetic. I am wonder,too.

I am sense of feeling that they had to use instant box as Hamburger Help is not health one of reason with too high sodium. I keep wonder, too. It is not the simple for their lifetime without help them. I keep concerned few of my friend similiar situation.

Most worry about who deaf-blind people deal with their misunderstood or not aware of doctor tell them.
I read DeafDigest that I was stunned after doctor whisper and told interpreter that the deaf with limit vision. That person have a cancer and never told the Deaf-blind with high functions that the person would died within 6 month left to go.. It is very distrub me I read and really mad about that situation with stupidest doctor has not education professional!

March 11, 2009 at 2:58 am
(2) Robert Alfred Hawkins says:

Training. Repetition. Awareness. Organization. Cleanliness. Oh my how can I stop here. There’s more. You name it. They can get it done. In many cases they do better than numerous sighted people. Many deafblind I personally know are in better than great health. Within sighted deaf population there’s so many low-functioning they simply die or suffer long due to bad health and inability to read anything health-related. No difference, really. The same within the deafblind population. It’s a matter of proportionality. Many of the deafblind are intelligent they just tune out and keep to themselves because the sighted very frequently discriminate on them so its why many are clueless about their ability. I chuckle when many deaf go on about life ranting about hearing being oblivious about what they can do yet they go on as if their undies are bunching up theirs while in the same breath they discriminate or at least be this ignorant about the abilities of their own kind who also happens to be blind. This is no different than Deaf-on-deaf tactics. Double standards. Seriously, it’s all common sense in embracing knowledge of what people can do. Just don’t forget this–a band of eminent Gallaudet people back in 2000 told me I can’t write a lick because I’m legally deafblind. One of them is a faculty who has to eat crow everyday.

Go figure.

March 11, 2009 at 11:06 am
(3) Dianrez says:

Agencies like the Helen Keller Center are experienced at teaching Deaf-Blind independence skills, which would include cooking for oneself.

Besides organization, the client is taught to prepare simple and healthy meals, to microwave or pop frozen meals in the oven, and to follow simple recipes kept in memory or on cards using Braille or large type.

Most cooking devices and mixing utensils have controls that one can feel, or if not, have stickers with raised figures applied to them.

Safeguards are also taught such as checking to see that appliances are turned off safely.

Devices are sold for the blind to use that assist in measuring ingredients. Buzzing timers are available.

It would depend on the individual how much independence he/she desires or can handle.

March 11, 2009 at 11:49 am
(4) Robert Alfred Hawkins says:

I ought to add that there’s industry-related bills being looked at calling for prohibiting microwaves from being hyper-sensitive to touch. I remember pressing something and the unit was sensitive to point it added a minute! This is what I realize is a concern for DEAF and DEAF-BLIND people and some hearing folks. Just my two cents. There’s something out there many of us don’t know about. Just for example look at the Extreme Home Makeover featuring the mother with no legs and one deformed arm. She more than survived before she got these smart effects placed in her newly rebuilt home. Same stuff applies towards blind, deafblind folks. Take the time to find out and you’ll be surprised. Naturally, many deaf are ignorant as deaf schools and what not don’t educate them about deafblind let alone the deaf. Deaf Studies at certain prominent deaf schools are so minimal to say the least. I’m really disappointed and I know the faculties are too. Its just a bastardization of many of the good in us.

March 12, 2009 at 4:55 pm
(5) anonymous says:

DianaRez is absoutely right – there are centers and resources out there for deafblind folks.

I don’t think we should go around saying “oh, deafblind folks can’t do that safely” – if there is a will, there is a way.

It sounds to me like the woman that you talked to either (1) doesn’t have the knowledge/resources to seek out support such as the Helen Keller Center (2( does not have the desire to do so. We need to encourage/educate deafblind folks to get the support and education they need to live independently and safely, and we should blame THEM if they refuse to do so, just like we would anyone else.

helen keller center provides training courses in everyday living, such as cooking, cane training, transportation, etc.

March 18, 2009 at 6:34 am
(6) Niq says:

Ehh… where are these Helen Keller Centers? There are none in Puerto Rico. There are Independent Living programs that are federally and state funded, and I guess that every state/territory has one.

March 18, 2009 at 9:53 am
(7) Ruth says:

Helen Keller Center is located in New York. They have programs for Seniors, youth so you would need to contact them or get on their web site. There are also representatives in each region that would be able to help. It’s a wonderful place for those who have vision and hearing loss to go to learn to be independent.

June 9, 2010 at 8:53 pm
(8) anna mason says:

Hi Jamie,
I developed this accessible website which compiled recipes and adaptive cooking techniques contributed by Deaf-Blind from all over the US and other countries as well. I still need to work on some of the links though. Thanks for all your info! Ann:) http://home.mindspring.com/~dbcooksnetwork/welcomejoinus2ye.html

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