Communication with the dependent person

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Good communication helps ensure the welfare both of the carer and of the person being cared for. It is highly important to keep communication as fluid as possible. To ensure this:

  • Choose the right moment to talk, in a quiet setting
  • Listen carefully and show interest. Don’t trivialise what he or she has to say
  • Watch how the person reacts. Observe his or her emotional state to determine specific needs
  • Find topics of conversation that are of interest to him or her
  • Use simple language at an appropriate volume
  • Use a friendly tone of voice and smile
  • Respect however long he or she needs to understand what you say and to respond
  • Sit next to or opposite him or her, and if possible at the same height, with your eyes at the same level

Sometimes, when there is physical or cognitive deterioration, verbal communication can be hard or even impossible. At these times, use gestures and body language to get your message across.

  • Maintain physical and visual contact
  • Hug, caress, smile. Showing affection comforts the person being cared for
  • Be an active listener, focusing on his or her needs


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