Friday, 12 August 2011

East Enders Star and mum of deaf child talks of struggle to cope

East Enders Star, Rita Simons who plays Roxy Mitchell, revealed this week how she has been suffering from panic attacks since the birth of her children, one of whom is deaf, in an interview with 'What's on TV'

Known to millions across the UK for her role as a feisty barmaid in the long-running soap opera, Rita has also been a campaigner for deaf charity Action on Hearing Loss, formerly known as RNID. 

The Daily Mail reported last year that it was thought Rita's daughter Maiya's deafness was due to a condition called Mondini Dysplasia, which causes changes to the shape of the cochlear. The cochlear is the organ responsible for converting the vibrations made by sound waves in to signals that the brain understands as sound. 

About the panic attacks that followed, Rita says: “When Theo [her husband] and I went for our first night out after the kids were born, we were having a subdued dinner with friends and suddenly I couldn’t breathe.

“My heart was in my mouth and I was sweating and shaking. I didn’t tell anyone because you feel stupid and weak, like you are going insane.”

The NDCS, (National Deaf Children's Society) has a freephone helpline and parent support forum for parents who would like to share their feelings or ask questions about their child's hearing loss.

What's on TV have the full interview here.

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