Child with Hearing aids GAC question

Discussion in 'disABILITIES!' started by Bluetickmom, May 14, 2012.

  1. Bluetickmom

    Bluetickmom Mouseketeer

    Jan 5, 2009

    We have visited WDW many times, and while my daughter had various needs that we probably could of used a GAC to help, we never did. I guess I just never thought to do it. We just utilized fastpass, got to shows super super early, I would occasionally hold her and break my back, etc.

    I have read the FAQ stickie, etc. I guess I am looking to see if anyone else has any first hand experience that can tell me if it's worth it in this circumstance to obtain a GAC, basically if it would help her at all. :)

    My daughter has Bi-lateral high frequency hearing loss in both ears and wears hearing aids. Due to other deficits, she is not a good reader, so the subtitles do nothing for her. She also does not know any sign language. Due to these facts, we have never requested special seating.

    Her hearing is the worst with a lot of background noise, and I noticed at Beauty and the Beast on the last trip that she missed a good portion of what was being said/sung due to noise around her. So I guess my question is, would the hard of hearing section be better for her?

    I don't mind getting to a show super early if you can recommend the best theater placement for her, I just want to ensure she can enjoy the show. :)

    We skipped Festival of the Lion King and Nemo in the past because of the hearing issue, and I would love to have her experience them this time.
  2. cmwade77

    cmwade77 DIS Veteran

    Jul 1, 2005
    Go to city hall/guest relations and explain the situation to them and ask their advice. A GAC may or may not help in this situation, but they should be able to give the best advice.

    My thoughts is either the front row, as you will be closest to the performers, although since so few actually sing or talk in the shows at Disney World, this may not be as beneficial as it would at Disneyland. The other alternative is Behind the last row that has people, I would think this would minimize noise. As for Lion King, so much of it is visual that I would think that she would enjoy it anyway.
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  4. gilesmt

    gilesmt DIS Veteran

    Feb 20, 2010
    Just a thought it may work, it may not, depending on her age. The device they rent out for blind, would cut out lots of background noise, at least that is one of the huge pluses for me. You give a deposit and then get it back after you retun it. It describes what is going on in the shows and on the rides, in shows you sit in special places, usually up towards the front so that the device can pick up the frequency, which can be a plus, for many shows, they will tell me I don't have to wait, just come back at such and such a time and they will let me in, but that is in Disneyland, like alladin they would tell me to come to the front door and they would sit me, even before anyone else, although that is not always, it depends on who is on, but usually the wait for shows is reduced some.

    Some say that it is voice overload, they tell you everything, and since your daughter is young that may be weird and it any audio processing problem, I would not recommend. But that said, I listen to recorded books at 8 times the normal speed (like speed reading), and since I have lost sight my hearing, touch and smell are much more sensitive, so I have learned to block out what I don't need to hear, and it helps to focus on what I do need to hear.

    Opefully someone else can answer also. Oh I think this device also has close caption, but you said that would not help.
  5. Talking Hands

    Talking Hands <font color=purple><b>|,,|/</b> DEAF DISNEY LOVER<

    Mar 27, 2002
    My thoughts as a hard of hearing person is that no matter where you are seated background noise will be an issue. Sitting close to the front will allow her to see better but honestly she will not be able to speech read the performers as they are still not close enough. Both Nemo and Festival of the Lion King are very visual and entertaining even without be able to understand the words completely. Also at these shows there is not a special section for the deaf and hard of Hearing (DHOH) unless there is interpreting going on. Otherwise a GAC is needed. BTW using the interpreting schedule to see the shows tending to be very restrictive on other activities as only park park per day has interpreting and only 1 time per show. GAC may be your best bet.
  6. Pluto.AuD

    Pluto.AuD Ears earned

    Jun 16, 2011
    Since she uses hearing aids, a great service Disney offers is their handheld assistive listening device. LISTENING DEVICES

    If her hearing aids have a T-Coil, or Tele-Coil program, she'd be able to use the device with an induction loop that would go around her neck. This program is almost always available in any behind the ear hearing aid, just ask your audiologist. The T-Coil program turns off or turns down the microphones on the hearing aid and sends the signal of the performers mic to the device. This would allow the show/attraction to be sent directly to her hearing aids and eliminate background noise.
  7. lanejudy

    lanejudy Moderator Moderator

    Oct 27, 2011
    As Pluto.AUD mentions, they do offer a hand-held listening device, available at Guest Relations for a refundable deposit charged to your credit card and refunded back when you return the item at the end of the day. I'm not sure if your child uses an FM system at school, but it is similar. There are headphones (I'm not sure if it can connect directly into the hearing aids) that she wears and the hand-held device amplifies the program directly through the headphones. Only certain shows/attractions use this...I think there may be a list on the WDW website.

    However, we did try to use this for our DD this past March. I'm not sure if we had a defective device, but we didn't get good reception from it at all. Often it was just static, and the one show (Carousel of Progress) where it seemed to work, it was not in-sync with the portion of the show we were viewing. So that was our first-hand experience. I might try it again just to see if maybe we had a defective device.

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