So many things change for your aging adult as she grows older and communication can be full of big changes. Using some of these tips can help you both to get as much as possible out of your talks with each other.
Practice Active Listening.
Active listening means that you’re paying close attention to what your senior is saying. You might repeat or rephrase what she’s just said to test your understanding, too. This is a form of listening that can pay off in other areas of your life as well.
Go with Short Sentences and Simple Words.
For a lot of reasons ranging from hearing issues to cognitive changes, your elderly family member may get lost a bit in complicated conversations. Shorter sentences and less complicated words can really benefit both of you. This doesn’t mean that your elderly family member isn’t smart enough to understand what you’re saying. This is just a way to simplify communication so that it’s easier.
Keep Your Focus.
If you’re bouncing around from one topic to another, that’s going to increase the likelihood that your senior ends up confused. Do what you can to stick to one topic at a time and when you do change topics, use conversational cues to let her know that you’re now talking about something else. That’s going to make things easier on both of you.
Sometimes practical tips are the easiest ones to follow regularly. Be mindful of background noises when you and your elderly family member are talking. Turn down the television or radio if you’re going to be talking. Make sure that you face your senior when you talk to her and maintain eye contact while you’re talking. These little steps are going to yield big results.
Give Your Senior More Time to Respond.
It can take longer than it used to for your senior to process what you’re saying and to formulate her response. Give her the time that she needs and avoid rushing her. When you’re asking her to make choices, give her two or three options so that she’s not having to wrestle with choices that are too big.
If you’re still having a little bit of trouble working out the difficulties you and your senior are having communicating with each other, you might want to consider hiring home care providers. They have experience communicating with aging adults and they can show you what they’ve learned about making communication easier.
The staff at Home Care Matters is available to talk with you and your family about all of your needs. Home Care Matters is a home care agency providing quality and affordable home care in Buford, GA and the surrounding areas. Call (678) 828-2195 for more information.
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