A key barrier that many people experience when it comes to visiting loved ones in residential care is that feeling of awkwardness when none knows what to say. This often leads to anxiety for not only the visitors, but also for the senior. Here are some conversational tips to remember for visits with loved ones in Red Deer assisted living communities.
Ask Open-Ended Questions
You might remember from your school days a teacher telling you the importance of asking open-ended questions. These are questions that do not have a simple yes or no answer, or in fact could have no answer at all. Asking open-ended questions is a great way to spark conversation. Some examples of open-ended questions may be to ask your loved one if they have watched any good shows or movies lately, or if they have any upcoming plans or activities. Make sure to follow up these questions with more conversation.
Share Past Experiences
Bringing along an old photo album is a great way to create a relaxed, enjoyable atmosphere when visiting a loved one. This is a great opportunity to reminisce about the past, learn new things about your family, and create engaging conversation.
Ask For Advice
We all feel better when we feel useful and needed, and being able to share advice is an important part of this. Asking your loved one for advice and their opinion on any number of things is a sure fire way to make them feel needed. This does not have to be advice on important life decisions, although it can be. You may even want to think about your loved ones past and current hobbie, and ask about these. For example, if you know your loved one enjoyed many years gardening, ask for advice on how to grow bigger potatoes, or keep pests away.
A visit with a loved one should be a cherished experience. Delaying or putting off visits because of fears of awkwardness is not fair for either of you. Remember, these visits are important, so keep finding ways to make them happen.