This paper demonstrates the lack of importance which, until recently, has been accorded to the distinction between hearing loss and learning disability when they occur together. It then emphasises the problems which this has caused, including challenging behaviour. A summary of the causes common to both learning disability and hearing loss is given, along with brief descriptions of tests used to diagnose hearing loss in the learning‐disabled. The importance of team work is stressed, together with the necessity of education for all personnel working with the learning‐disabled. Some ideas contributing to rehabilitation are suggested and the importance of restoring some hearing even to the most severely handicapped is described. Finally, readers are reminded that rehabilitation is not a ‘quick fix’ but the product of much patient work undertaken by all concerned probably over a long period.
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