Hillendale Home Care is licensed by the State of California to provide Certified Nursing training courses for Contra Costa and Alameda Counties.

Dementia Care Walnut Creek Experts Offer Tips to Improve Communication With Alzheimer’s Patients

charming young woman and senior woman in a wheelchair sit together in a park and have fun

Caregivers can improve communication and dementia care techniques with these tips.

Alzheimer’s disease is well known for having a profound influence on language capabilities. In addition to the disease impacting speech, it also impacts an individual’s ability to correctly use words, as well as the comprehension of words. As the disease continues into later stages, using language as a way of socializing will become less effective, and caregivers may elect to utilize differing strategies for communicating to connect with their clients.

To help enhance communication with clients, Hillendale Home Care, the dementia care Walnut Creek experts, recommends the following strategies:

  • Learn how to create a ‘kind voice’ – lower, slower, smiling.
  • Treat your client as an adult using the utmost respect, and do all that you can to be patient, kind, flexible, supportive and peaceful.
  • Make certain there are limited potential distractions including the television or radio, and be sure to make eye contact.
  • To help ground the client and acquire his / her focus, call the client by name and identify yourself by name as well.
  • Utilize short, simple sentences and ask easy-to-answer questions such as, “Would you like beef or chicken?” instead of, “What would you like for dinner?”
  • Never argue or try to change the client’s mind, even if the request seems unreasonable.
  • Repeat information and questions. If the client will not answer, wait for a moment so the client can think through what you’re saying. Then ask again.
  • Pay attention to the feelings, not to the facts, as the emotions being shown tend to be more important than what is being said.
  • Let the client think of and describe whatever she or he wants. In the event that the client doesn’t say the right word, or cannot think of a word, try guessing the correct one. If you still cannot uncover exactly what the client is trying to communicate, ask him or her to point or gesture.

Great communication skills are important in all interactions with clients, but particularly with clients who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Visit our website to learn additional helpful tips to improve communication strategies with Alzheimer’s or dementia clients, or explore how you can become a member of Hillendale’s home care team by contacting our CNA and HHA school today!