P1-Describe different forms of verbal and non-verbal communication People of various needs and abilities can be come across in a nursing home setting. Effective communication between a healthcare worker and patient, in such a setting, would require the use of verbal as well as non-verbalcommunication methods effectively. In this assignment, I will be discussing the different ways to communicate with service users in nursing homes.
Communication is a key skill. It is needed to develop positive relationships with service users. So, what exactly is communication? Communication in general means sending or receiving information. There are 2 types of communication groups: one-to-one communication and group communication. One-to-one communication is a two-way process, usually an individual will need another person to communicate with. You are likely to have a one-to-one conversation every day; for example, in a nursing home talking to the patient in their room would be a one-to-one conversation.However, group communication is more difficult especially if there is a large amount of people in the group. It involves everyone communicating effectively which means making sure you don’t speak on top of each other.
In groups, there can be an individual who tends to speak more than the rest. The individuals who tend to speak less in the group are more likely to feel uncomfortable speaking in a large crowd or, they just don’t want to involve themselves in the conversation. There is always a team leader (usually a boss) that encourages everyone to have a turn to talk about what they want. This could be the changes in rules of the nursing home such as hours and food menus. Verbal communication uses words to present ideas, thoughts and feelings. Good verbal communication involves using a variety of different styles appropriate to the audience you are addressing.
You also need to present your ideas clearly through spoken words and to listen carefully to other people. In nursing homes they may use different ways to communicate with patients. This may include clear speech, understanding cultural differences, tone, and pitch and pace etc. Clear SpeechClear speech is needed in a nursing home because not everyone has the same abilities. Some people may not understand what you are saying so you need to be able to pronounce your words correctly and you also need to make sure to sound the ends of words.Another way of verbal communication is to select appropriate language. This means using formal or informal language in the right places. If you’re working in a nursing home you will need to speak in a formal manner.
Effective communication skills are key in health and social care because they help you to establish and develop relationships with colleagues, management and families. Understanding Cultural DifferencesUnderstanding cultural differences will benefit in the health and social care industry. Britain is a multi-ethnic society. This implies that people in the UK speak different languages and have different beliefs from one another.
English may be a second or even third language for some people and may not be spoken or understood by others. So for example, if you go into a nursing home and all the information is written in English but you can’t speak nor read in English, or, the staff that work there can only speak English, the service user will find it difficult to find and use the care services they need. Also in the nursing industry you need to make sure that you respect people’s beliefs. So for instance if a Muslim wearing a headscarf is in the nursing home she’d need to be respected on the fact that she can’t show her hair around men. Tone, Pitch, PaceAnother way to communicate effectively is to pay careful attention on the pace, pitch and tone of your voice. Tone of voice can convey different feelings. The way you say words can show different meanings. In a nursing home you will have to be cautious of the way you speak to the elderly people in the home making sure they hear and understand everything you’re saying.
If you speak to someone in a loud voice, with a fixed tone, the person will automatically think you’re angry with them or they will think you’re treating them like they’re less intelligent. You need to make sure you speak calmly and quietly to show you’re interested in the conversation and what they are saying. Lastly, the pace of your speech should be a steady pace. When you’re quick with what you say it’s hard to make out what exactly it is you’re trying to say, similarly if you speak slowly you tend to add ‘errs’ and ‘umms’ making it harder to concentrate on what it is you’re saying. Active listening skillsActive listening is not just listening to what people are saying. It also means you need to hear the words being spoken, think about what the person isactually saying and then think of a reply to what they just said. Active listening skills can be shown by eye contact, body language and facial expression.
If you don’t understand anything you need to ask. This is called effective listening. If you’re gazing somewhere else or leaning away. Not only is it disrespectful but it also shows the person isn’t listening. Active listeners tend to ask questions proving that they know what the other person is talking about.
It is important to have this skill in a nursing home as it helps to ensure advanced discussion. You also need to keep an open mind and concentrate on the direction of the speaker’s message, so you have to face the way they speak to you and not turn your back towards them because they want to speak to your face not the back of your head Formal and informal language Formal communication is speaking in a manner appropriate for the conversation. We use formal communication if we talk to someone professional such as a nurse, doctor, work staff, teachers etc.
We usually start a formal conversation with “hello how are you.” In health and social care workers speak to someone using this form of communication. It is clear, correct.Informal communication is a casual conversation. Usually you speak in this form with friends and family. “Hi you good.” Is an example of informal conversation.
This type of communication is more settled, calm and warm. Slang is an informal tone usually used in a normal conversation between friends. Professionals can’t use this type of language as it can be confusing to those who can’t speak good English or even those who can’t speak English at all. Non-Verbal Non-verbal communication refers to the messages we receive and reply to without actually talking. This involves facial expressions, eye contact, personal space and use of pic/sign language etc. Facial ExpressionsUs humans can interact and communicate without the use of physical speech. We can show the way we feel with our faces; for example if you were upset you’d tend to look down and not give eye contact to the person you were talking to. You would be frowning or would keep a straight face implying that you are not interested in the conversation or you don’t want to talk.
It is important to match your facial expression to the conversation, for example if someone is telling you a sad story and you smile, it is found upon and seen as a dishonest gesture. Facial expression can also link to body language as your body language doesn’t lie and gives a true reflection of what you are thinking. Eye ContactEye contact is compulsory when communicating as it lets the person know you’re listening and actually active in the conversation.
It also shows you are understanding and showing an interest. When we are feeling positive our eyes become wider whereas when we are felling negative our eyes tend to get smaller. Eye contact also helps keep the conversation going and helps for judging the other person’s response. Personal SpaceSometimes touch or contact can be comforting to someone. Other times it can be quite disturbing. You need to make sure you use touch and contact in a respectful manner.
Sometimes people want their own personal space so you’d have to respect that. If a person was upset the first instinct would be to give them a comforting hug as you would with a friend or relation. However, you may not know this person a lot which means you may be breaching boundaries. The individual may feel offended by your action. Occasionally touch can be misunderstood, especially if someone is from a different culture. In some cultures, men and women do not touch, even to shake hands. Always ask first what service users would like you to do and tell them how you will need to touch them before you do so.
Also, touching another person or moving into their personal space can send messages of care and affection, but it can also indicate threat or power over that person. Use of pic/signs/symbols languagePictures are used to communicate with those who aren’t able to speak or use a language. Many people with autism use picture cards as they learn visually and communicate better with images and pictures. Blind people are unable to see so they communicate through Braille. This is an arrangement of raised dots on a page which indicates letters, words and numbers. Lastly those who have difficulties hearing and learning use sign language to communicate with one another. Hand signals represent words and phrases to convey messages. Care organisations such as a nursing home use signs/symbols to represent certain things to a service user.
Signs and symbols are used to communicate and send essential information to those who have a learning difficulty. In a nursing home nurses, may use objects of reference. These are items that have special meaning for somebody, for instance elderly people treasure their photographs because they provide and represent memories of friends, family and other relatives.
This is useful for someone in a care home who has Alzheimer’s or Amnesia as they could forget certain periods in their life. The last non-verbal communication is gestures. We use gestures daily. Sometimes you can automatically recognize a gesture, but it is also important to bare in mind that people have different cultural norms. For example, a thumb up can mean all is well in western cultures whereas in other countries (such as Greece or Russia) it is an insult. Another example is if you shake your fist it can show your angry or aggression. Some people use their hands to talk. They tend to shake it around when explaining something.
Singers use their hands to control their voice (their hand will rise as their pitch gets higher vice versa). In nursing the service provider may use their hands to explain something to a patient (pointing at something).