6 Ways to Provide Better Care to an Elderly Loved One with Aphasia

By , 9:00 am on

Aphasia affects the ability to communicate and understand what other people are saying. If you have an aging parent who has aphasia due to a stroke or another health issue, it’s important to understand the kind of care he or she needs. Use the following tips to provide the best possible care to a loved one with aphasia.

1. Stick to Simple Questions

Seniors with aphasia often have difficulty communicating verbally and through writing, so you should avoid complex questions. Instead, ask your parent questions that can be answered with a simple yes or no. For example, ask if your loved one would like a certain food for dinner rather than asking what he or she wants to eat. These simple questions may be easier for your parent to respond to.

If your elderly loved one is living with a serious medical condition and needs help managing the tasks of daily living, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a Coral Gables elder care agency you can trust. Our caregivers are available 24/7, there are no hidden fees in our contracts, and we offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all of our in-home care services.

2. Reduce Distractions

Elderly people with aphasia typically have a difficult time following conversations when they have distractions around. Turn off the television and set mobile phones or tablets aside when you and your loved one talk to each other. Reducing distractions in the immediate environment can help your parent concentrate more on what you’re saying.

3. Keep Conversations One on One

Since it’s difficult for seniors with aphasia to communicate, limit conversations to just you and your parent. Having other family members or friends involved in these conversations may become too confusing for your loved one. If your parent’s language disorder gets better through speech therapy, you can then include other people in your conversations.

4. Consider Visual Aids

When your loved one is having difficulty understanding what you’re saying, consider using visual aids. Identifying images on a screen or writing on a piece of paper can help your parent understand your words better. If your loved one cannot respond to questions verbally, ask him or her to point to the image or writing that shows what he or she wants to say. 

Older adults with aphasia may require assistance with daily activities. If your aging loved one needs help managing everyday tasks or encouragement to adopt healthier lifestyle choices, turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of senior care. Coral Gables Home Care Assistance provides professional in-home caregivers around the clock to help seniors live longer, happier, and healthier lives.

5. Make Hand Gestures

Using common and easily understood hand gestures can help you communicate with your parent more effectively. Seniors with aphasia are sometimes unable to grasp certain ideas others are trying to communicate to them. Hand gestures can make it easier for a parent with aphasia to understand what you’re trying to express.

6. Avoid Abrupt Topic Changes

When talking to your loved one, make sure you don’t suddenly switch topics in the middle of a conversation. Instead, stick to one topic at a time to prevent your parent from becoming confused or frustrated. You should also avoid talking about complex or difficult topics when possible.

Aphasia is fairly common among seniors who have experienced strokes or other major health issues. Living with a serious health condition can make it challenging for seniors to age in place. However, they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional live-in care. Coral Gables seniors can benefit from assistance with meal prep, bathing, transportation to the doctor’s office, medication reminders, and much more. To hire a professionally trained caregiver for your aging parent, call Home Care Assistance at 1 (305) 964-5636 today.