CommunicationIf people spent less time talking and more timelistening, they would have a sense of respect andunderstanding of what is expected of each other. Thisapplies to both caregiver/patient andemployee/supervisor relationships. I believe youmust have good communication skills in order tosucceed.
I know you believe you understoodwhat you think I said but I am not sure you realize that what you heardis not what I meant !!
CommunicationCommunication is accomplished by sending and receivingmessages. -Verbal communication is the most commonmethod. In order to have effective communication youmust have good listeners.
Verbal Communication is spoken and must be at anappropriate level for understanding. Verbal communication uses: Vocabulary Clarity of Voice Organization of Sentences Tone, Pitch, Volume
Non-Verbal communication uses ones body to send a message; body language.uses: eye contact facial expressions posture overall appearance hand & body movements body position activity level touching
Attending Behavior is a form of feedback- Shows that you are alert and interested in what the other person is saying to you and is often non-verbal.5 componentsEye contact-look in the eyes of the person you arespeaking too.Gestures-use visible body action to communicate.Posture-stand straight and be confident in what you are saying.Physical distance-an arms length is good to use as a rule of thumb.Paraphrasing-rephrase what is being said if you do not understand what is being said or asked of you.
Barriers to CommunicationStereotypes are beliefs that are based on generalizations.Race is the classification of people according to sharedphysical characteristics such as skin color,bone structure, facial features, hair texture, and blood type.
Cultural Differences Understand that culture influenceshow people behave and interact with others.
Tips for Communication - Show respect - Treat all groups equally - Be aware of your own and the patients’ non-verbal messages - If you don’t understand something, ask for clarification and learn something from them
Guidelines for Communicating with Patients- Reflect the patient’s feelings and thoughts by rewordinghis statements into questions.- Give the patient only factual information not yourpersonal feelings, opinions, or beliefs.
Guidelines for Communicating with Patients- Make eye contact- Speak clearly and distinctly- Use touch if appropriate Do not argue with the patients!!
Communicating With The Special Needs Patient- Before helping someone with a disability, ask if you canhelp. Do not assume that someone needs help withoutasking them.- It is alright to use words like see, hear, and run but notwords like cripple, gimp, and retard.- Don’t define the person by their disability. Don’t say thedeaf patient in exam room 1.- Shaking hands is appropriate with people who haveUpper extremity disabilities.
Hearing Impaired- Do not approach the patient from behind- Be sure the patient knows you want to speak- Increase the room lights- Face the patient to promote lip reading- If the patient wears glasses, see that they are on and check for a hearing aid too- Speak slowly, concisely and articulate clearly.- Use visual aids and gestures- When you are not understood, rephrase rather thanrepeat- Get an interpreter if necessary but speak to the patient
Visually Impaired- Address the patient by name and then touch lightly on the hand or arm to avoid startling- Identify yourself and what you are doing- Be specific when giving directions- Always let the patient know when you are leaving the room- When walking, let the patient grab on to your upper arm
Aphasia - Patient can not understand spoken or written language or cannot express spoken or written language - Listen to and wait for patient communication - Speak slowly and clearly - Face patient and use non-verbal communication when necessary - Paraphrase what has been communicated to you
Caring for the Emotionally Stressed or Behavior Problem Patient- Don’t take pt. remarks personally. Many people developproblems in response to unmet needs and figuring out thoseunmet needs can reduce or eliminate the behavior.Stresses are situations, feelings or conditions that cause aperson to be anxious about their physical or emotional well-beingsuch as illness, hospitalization, loss of a loved one, jobstress, being away from home and family, age Stresses can lead to or aggravate a physical illness.
Agitation- Inappropriate verbal, vocal or motor activities due to causesother than disorientation or real need.- Forms of agitation are combative behavior or verbalaggression. Factors= frustration, noise, illness, increased stimuli,drugs, and depression Behaviors= cursing, spitting, biting,hitting, wandering,repetitive questioning, demanding attention, screaming,swearing, accusing, arguing... Do not argue back!!!
Disorientation - Change in mental status-confusion - Person shows lack of reality awareness with regard to time, person or place. - Can be mild, temporary, prolonged. - Can occur with Alzheimers disease, stroke, injury to the brain, fevers, illness, drugs, post surgery, heart attack, renal failure.....
Care of the Disoriented or Dementia Patient- Be calm and gentle- Give slow, clear, simple instructions one at a time- Build self-esteem with the reward of positive comments- Keep rooms well light and quiet- Offer simple choices- Accept communication that does not make sense
Dealing with/defusing the Demanding Patient- Learn to understand the factors causing the behavior.- Show that you care and follow through.- KEEP CONTROL OF YOUR EMOTIONS. Don’t be defensive, don’t take their remarks personally, and remain neutral.- Maintain open communication by listening and watching body language.
It’s not always what we say that’s important, it may be how we say it.
Works CitedHegner, B., Acello, E., & Caldwell, B. (2010). Basic Human Needs and Communication. Nursing Assistant–A Nursing Process Approach BASICS. New York: Cengage Learning.