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Karen’s Korner: Communication with loved ones

by Minden Press-Herald

Karen’s Korner,

One of the most important challenges for seniors, is that of communication with loved ones, according to a publication entitled, “Graying with Grace.”

The author says that: “Communication is a common problem that challenges older adults mainly due to decreased physical and cognitive abilities”.

As we age, we tend to experience some loss of our ability to get around as well, and sometimes it is difficult to remember everything as we once did. Part of this is the natural aging process, and some other circumstances add to the situation as well, such as dementia, Alzheimer’s, and other mental issues, and physical problems, such as loss of hearing, and weakening sight.

“These often lead to misunderstood conversations, not hearing what others are saying, and a reduced response time when expressing themselves,” according to the author.

The information goes on to say, “A lack of technical skills or an outright fear of technology is another significant barrier to communication for elderly people today. Younger people, such as adult children and grandchildren, don’t answer the phone; they text. They don’t send grandparents photographs; they post them on social media. Older adults may feel isolated and disconnected if they haven’t learned to use these technologies.”

One way to address this problem is to provide our seniors with the resources needed to stay connected with their loved ones. A little understanding can go a long way; teaching them how to use technology, and offering classes or workshops to help them better understand new technologies.” Providing the older population with access to the appropriate devices and services that can enhance their communication skills, is a must. 

Spending quality time with the older adults in your life and checking on them regularly is very important in order to communicate and keep up with them. Pick up the phone and call them occasionally. Call and drop by for a visit. Quality time with loved ones is essential!

Older adults are more likely to be emotionally and mentally healthy when they feel connected and supported. Communication reduces the feelings of loneliness and isolation that many experience. Additionally, communication helps seniors stay connected with their families and friends and in their communities.

Organizations like the Webster Parish Council on Aging can help with these services as well. For further questions, please contact us at 318-371-3056.

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