Growing up I have always admired the way my mom communicated with her various environments. Mainly the assisted living environment where communication was the only way to depict to dementia residents how you really feel. When I was a little girl my mom would always bring me with her to her assisted living communities that she was in charge of when she worked at a community. This community consisted of senior citizens who had been diagnosed with dementia and Alzheimer’s. These diagnoses are difficult to comprehend to say the least; not only for the person who has it but also by the family members who have to support them through the process. So what exactly was the purpose of communication in an assisted living community? The power of language/ communication is important to the overall well being of a person and means of exchanging ideas or beliefs to further implement influential political, social, and economic relationships.
“Communication is a HUGE aspect to communicating with people with dementia!” My mom always told me that before I went into her community because she was trying to teach me to read my environment to communicate with others in order to improve their mental state. Today, I am an essential worker during a pandemic supporting residents at my community by assisting them with the ability to speak or communicate with me as I do with them. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, “Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias gradually diminish a person’s ability to communicate. Communication with a person with Alzheimer’s requires patience, understanding and good listening skills. The strategies below can help both you and the person with dementia understand each other better.” This quote shows how the power of communication affects their reactions and their social relationships. Change in the ability to communicate is difficult for a person with Alzheimer’s to comprehend because they knew they were able to do it before but losing this ability causes them to break out in rage and sadness. This is why the way you communicate with someone is important to how they react or the way they form social, economic, and political decisions. Especially communicating in the early stage of Alzheimer’s, “In the early stage of Alzheimer’s disease, sometimes referred to as mild Alzheimer’s in a medical context, an individual is still able to participate in meaningful conversation and engage in social activities. However, he or she may repeat stories, feel overwhelmed by excessive stimulation or have difficulty finding the right word (alz.org).”
The power of language is so important and it has taught me to communicate with people in the toughest of times. My mom has taught me how to approach the person and encourage communication and to consider forming a social relationship with that person. Remember to “sincerely believe language is one of the most beautiful and diverse things. It is the simplest thing there is, yet complicated. If that is not the true beauty of language, I don’t know what is (medium.com).”
Dash, Amritraj. “Why Is Language Important?” Medium, Technifity, 20 Oct. 2018, medium.com/technifity/why-is-language-important-bae1f7569c1a.
“Communication and Alzheimer’s.” Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia, www.alz.org/help-support/caregiving/daily-care/communications.