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Stimulating an Elderly Persons Mind Through Conversation

January 17, 2021

All too often, we forget how important conversation is to the elderly. In fact, it can go a long way to ensuring that their minds are stimulated and kept busy. This is critical and can assist to prevent depression and anxiety in our aged community.

Stimulating an Elderly Persons Mind Through Conversation

 

We are all guilty of dreading what we are going to talk about when we chat to an elderly loved one.  You will often find yourself wondering what you are going to talk about when you visit or call an elderly family member who is living in a care home.

All too often, we forget how important conversation is to the elderly. In fact, it can go a long way to ensuring that their minds are stimulated and kept busy. This is critical and can assist to prevent depression and anxiety in our aged community.

Truth be told, there are many topics that you are able to talk about with senior citizens. In this article we will discuss what topics the elderly love to talk about and the methods that you can use to stimulate their minds in the process.

What Topics are Best to Talk About?

 

A good conversation can be both exciting and comforting for loved ones who are living in care homes. Here are some conversation starters that can help you to stimulate and engage the mind of your loved one:

Talk about Family and Other Life Events

If your loved one seems a little resistant to talk about themselves then try to ask them questions about other people in the family.  You can also ask them about any past experiences that they may have had as well as their day to day experiences in the care home in which they are residing.

Talk About Their Childhood

Elderly people love talking about their childhood and all the good memories that they have. By asking them about their past you could even get a better understanding of your family’s history.

Talk About Legacy

You will find yourself being extremely intrigued when talking to older adults about the lessons that they have learned during their lives. Elderly people love to share their life lessons with their loved ones.

 

Using Technology for Communication Amongst the Elderly

 

The use of technology to communicate with older people has become increasingly more valuable. Platforms such as video calling, and messaging can be a useful tool to bridge the divide between those who are living in a care home and are unable to see their families often.

 

Using technology to communicate with older people isn't without its challenges but considering all that can be gained it may be well worth it to get your loved one familiar with technology.

ADVANTAGES

·     Help to keep loneliness away by arranging convenient ways to keep in touch.

·     Being able to involve them in important moment of your life such as birthday parties and family get togethers.

·     Helps you to have peace of mind that your loved one is safe and happy.

·     Keeping them safe in their care homes amidst the pandemic.

DISADVANTAGES

·     Setting up devices can be challenging for the elderly.

·     Upfront costs to invest in the right device to use.

·     It can be difficult to teach an elderly person about technology.

 

Despite the few disadvantages, using technology to communicate with older people can make an enormous difference to their lives.

 

Care2Talk is a video technology platform that provides an easy to use and secure product for care facilities, ministries, institutes, and universities to connect with their various constituents seamlessly.

This iOS/Android App uses a specially designed interface on a mobile or tablet device to create an easy-to-use video chat tool for those with cognitive decline and other impairments who may find alternative methods difficult to navigate.

 

Care2Talk offers remote access that allows administrators to make changes to contacts, view recorded conversations and even troubleshoot any issues from anywhere in the world

Useful Conversation Techniques

 

The following tips may assist to ensure that you are doing all you can to engage in productive communication with an elderly person:

Try Not to Give Advice

Remember that elderly people are parents themselves and have had many year of advising and guiding their own children.  Telling them what todo may not go down very well and it is best to avoid unless it is for their safety or it has been specifically requested by them.

Speak Clearly

Many older adults are hard of hearing and can sometimes have trouble understanding the conversation that is going on around them.  Always remember to remain calm and talk in a gentle manner.  Speak louder is necessary but do not shout.  It is best to try and focus on once idea at a time and to keep your sentences as short and simple as possible. If your love one suffers from dementia or extreme hearing loss, do not speak to them as if they are a child.

Really Take Note and Listen

Listen to what your loved one is trying to communicate to you and do not interrupt them mid-sentence. If you do this it could lead to frustration on both sides which is something you are trying to avoid.

Accept Differences of Opinion

Many seniors experience a series of losses as they get older and get frustrated as they strive to stay in control of themselves and their environment. They can easily become agitated or even slightly aggressive when trying to communicate.

 

Do you best to try and keep them involved in any conversations and decisions that they are able to participate in. Respect their opinions the same way you would like them to respect yours.

The Psychological Benefits of Keeping in Contact

                               

Living in isolation especially during the current pandemic can make the elderly more anxious. Their anxiety is caused by worrying about their health, the future, and also about family members who they do not see very often. If they know they can reach out to a family member at any time should anything happen they will feel more safe and secure.

 

Dementia and Alzheimer’s are unfortunately very common ailments in old age. We as family to those susceptible to these ailments play an important role in the prevention and slowing down of the disease by stimulating our loved one’s mind through conversation.

 

Care2Talk allows for the ability of integration in care homes by using their application directly within the internal systems of the care home.  Senior citizens are able to have contact with not only family and friends, but also with the care home administration, care-aide, kitchen and in-house doctor

 

This includes people who are suffering from conditions associated with:

-       Aging & Dementia

-       Cognitive and Developmental Disabilities

-       Bain Injuries

-       Vision Impairment

-       Physical Disabilities

 

Features of The Care2Talk Application

 

-      To initiate a video call, tap the call button next to your online contact in config mode or tap on the online contact in client mode. Once in a call on config mode, you can choose to hide your video, mute yourself, flip the camera or hang up and so much more!

-      Closed System: The Care2Talk number is the unique identifier and is used when adding contacts.

-      There is unlimited onboarding training and support. Care2Talk will work with you to ensure that you fully understand how all our tools and features work. We offer training videos, virtual face-face meetings and full support from out IT team.

-      We offer quarterly updates as technology changes and we will make sure that our customers receive the latest version when rolling out our updates at no extra charge.

 

To Conclude

 

The health benefits of the elderly being able to stay connected with their families are innumerable, and they will be grateful to you for the effort that you are putting in to include them in your life.

 

Learn to talk to them and enjoy the conversations that you are able to conduct with them during these challenging times. Remember that they will not be around forever and it is important to enjoy them while you are still able to. Who knows, you may learn more from them than they will from you.

 

“The glory of the elderly is their insight to life.” -  Lailah Gifty Akita

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