For seniors to receive the best care possible, everyone involved must work together as a cohesive team.
Each member must understand their role and be able to complete it efficiently, and proper communication is one of the most important tools to furthering this goal.
Seniors can take steps to nurture positive discussions and exchanges with their caregivers by considering these seven tips for communication.
Good communication often begins with listening and paying careful attention to what is being said and in what context.
Physical problems such as fatigue and hearing impairments can make this more difficult, and seniors need to be open with their caregivers and ask for help if they find themselves struggling to focus on conversations and hear correctly what is going on around them.
By making sure that they understand what others are saying, seniors can respond with their own thoughts and ensure their wishes on the subject are made clear.
Assumptions can quickly lead to miscommunication. In order to make sure their caregivers understand their needs and desires, seniors must make certain that they don't assume those around them know how they feel on an issue or what they are thinking.
While it can seem unnecessary at times to speak at length on simple subjects, ensuring that even small details are understood can help everyone involved stay on the same page and work together as a team.
The old saying goes 'timing is everything' and with good reason. By broaching difficult or sensitive subjects when either they or their caregivers are already tired and frustrated, seniors risk increasing the difficulty of the conversation.
While important topics need to be dealt with in a timely manner, holding critical talks when everyone has enough time to speak and can approach the matter with a level head is key to being able to express opinions calmly and form plans.
Seniors shouldn't hesitate to write things down if it's difficult for them to remember something they want to talk about or information discussed in a past conversation. By keeping a notebook handy, seniors can jot down reminders for later reference and minimize the chance an important comment will be forgotten.
A thank you or a smile can go a long way to brightening the atmosphere, making it easier to talk openly. A compliment not only enriches a caregiver's day, but it can also help them to know specifically when and why a senior is happy with the care they receive.
Seniors can build closer relationships with those around them and improve future interactions by explaining what they like and complimenting their caregivers on the way they handle their care.
People think and approach situations differently. Because a person's actions are unique to their own personality, seniors can improve their dialogue with those around them by getting to know them better and remembering their individual habits and tendencies.
If a senior prefers their care routines to be done in a specific way, then speaking up is the only way their caregivers can know about these preferences.
However, simply making demands can burden those trying to lend assistance. Politely making requests and explaining the reasons behind them lets seniors be respectful of those around them while still expressing their needs and desires honestly.