When it comes to daily communication with your senior, you might think that more is better. But if she has dementia or other cognitive issues, keeping communications shorter and more direct can give you a bigger benefit.
Why Should You Try This?
Changing up how you talk with your aging adult and specifically using shorter and more direct communications helps your senior to focus on what you’re saying. Longer and more complicated conversations can be extremely difficult for someone with cognitive issues. It’s easier for your elder to follow along with these simplified communications.
Get to the Basics
You know what you’re trying to convey to your senior, so get right down to it. There’s no need for fluff or for extra questions or descriptors. Keep it simple and basic. When you start to add too many details, your elderly family member can get lost in those details. It’s best to just leave them out.
Questions Can Get Confusing
Along those same lines, questions might seem to help you get information from your senior, but they can confuse her. If you’re asking her what she prefers to eat for lunch or whether she wants to go to the bathroom, she can get caught up in that and not on what you’re actually doing. Instead, offer to help her to the bathroom when you’ve noticed it’s been a while since she went. Let her know it’s time to eat. Be direct.
Lead Your Senior through What’s Happening
For more complicated scenarios, such as ones that involve leaving the house, you might need to make several sets of direct statements for her. Let her know that it’s time to leave, for instance. Then follow that up with gathering anything that you need and heading out the door. Offer each bit of information as your elderly family member needs it so that she can follow along with you.
Give This Technique Some Practice
This is something that will take some practice for you, especially if you’re used to just chattering with your elder. As her cognitive issues change and worsen, this type of communication style can serve both of you so much more readily.
When you’re getting used to this type of communication, you might feel as if you’re stumbling a lot. Having elder care providers working along with you can help you to see the technique in action a little bit more and can help you to learn additional tips that can help.
For Elder Care Services in Collierville TN, please contact the caring staff at Personal Care Services MidSouth today!