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Botox and the Deaf:

Maria writes:  "If a person has Botox to take away the angry wrinkle (due to headache for example), how will they do when they ask 'What?' in sign language -- because that expression is gone or very weak. Can the 'question expression' be figured out from the rest of the face? "

Conversing in sign language with someone who has had Botox treatments would be the equivalent of a Hearing person having a voiced conversation with a monotone speaker.

Two Hearing people will typically still be able to understand each other based on the actual words being used.

However there may indeed be times when miscommunication happens.

I recall an interpreter friend of mine who told me about a time when the boss was greeting employees and voiced:
"Working hard?" (as a question).

The Deaf employee could lip-read the question but not hear the intonation at the end of the sentence and so thought the boss was saying:
"Working hard!"
(As in, "I can see you are working hard!" (which would be a compliment).

The Deaf employee responded, "Thank you!" (Assuming it was a compliment instead of a question).

So, indeed, Botox treatments may influence signed communication and to some extent result in miscommunication. It depends on the level of context involved. The higher the context -- the less likely the miscommunication.




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