As covered in previous sections, communication is an extremely important part of care. There are a range of different communication methods and styles you can use to help meet an individual’s communication needs and preferences.
One of the ways you could help meet an individual’s communication needs is through touch or physical contact. An individual’s preferences are extremely important here because while some forms of touch such as shaking hands can be unassuming, other forms of touch such as when you are washing an individual can be intimate. As such, any form of touch must be consented to by both people.
There are also various other specialist methods of communication including:
- Word or symbol boards
- Speech synthesisers
- Hearing aids or hearing loops
- Text phones
When using communication aids such as speech synthesisers, you should always check that they are functioning properly, clean and in good working order. If you are worried that communication aids are not working properly you should report this to a senior member of staff, a family member or the individual’s carer. Through these communication methods you can ensure that an individual’s communication needs and preferences are understood and build up an important relationship and partnership with them.