Communication can easily be by far one of the most difficult parts about dealing with the elderly, deterioration. Sometimes complex sentences or questions can be confusing, so making them simpler Communication can easily be by far one of the most difficult parts about dealing with the elderly, especially when it comes to those who have suffered significant emotional trauma or mental rephrasing may make things easier for residents, or using specific words with which residents connect can be helpful. Body language and facial expressions can not only convey the point you are trying to get across, but can make an impact on a resident's emotional state.
If a resident is hard of hearing or has a similar physical communication problem, then using alternative methods for communication is in order. These could include things such as writing or other visual cues can give residents not only a sense of interpersonal connection, but some amount of mental stimulation through the act of reading and writing. Residents may enjoy talking about their past, and this can be a great way for them to work through emotional trauma they've experienced, though a resident who does not wish to talk about his or her life (especially, for example, veterans of war) should never be pushed to do so.
Sometimes it can be beneficial to have someone act as a facilitator for a conversation between residents. Certain losses in communication, such as social graces or speaking ability (a conversation between a very quiet and hard of hearing resident can be extremely difficult), can be mitigated by having an employee stand by and help communicate ideas between residents. Employees can also provide topics and points of interest for conversations between residents, as this is one of the best ways to keep residents both mentally active and socially involved.
Touch is a surprisingly effective method of communication. Some residents might gain a huge sense of comfort from a mere hand on the shoulder, a quick hug, or a congratulatory pat on the back. While some residents might not appreciate physical connections, or might even actively avoid it, it is generally very successful with those that do. In short, there are a great number of ways with which to communicate with the elderly, one must simply be creative in how one attempts to do so. Don't be afraid to try communicating in a way you haven't tried before, as a resident might respond in a way you didn't expect.
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