Caregiving at Home

1

Thinking About Home Care

2

Communication

3

Caring For Yourself

4

Setting Up Your Home, Safety and Body Mechanics

5

Preventing Infection in the Home

6

Normal and Abnormal Signs of Aging

7

Meeting Special Needs and Conditions

8

Death, Dying and Hospice Care

9

Providing Personal Care

10

Transfers and Ambulation

11

Basic Healthcare Skills

12

Healthy Eating and Hydration

13

Emergency Care

14

Medications

Chapter 2 Communication

In the course of caregiving, communication is a vital skill. There are many people you will need to communicate with in order to give optimal care. These people may include your loved one, other family members both in and outside of your household, physicians and other medical professionals, pharmacists, and other providers of assistance and services. Chapter 2 of Caregiving at Home focuses on providing you with tools to make your communication more effective and efficient. It describes the communication process and how it works, including common barriers to communication and how to avoid or overcome them.

As a caregiver, you will rely on information from many sources. Find out how to be a good listener and how to make sure you get the information that you need. Guidelines are included for communicating with those who have special needs, included hearing or visual impairment, impaired speech, memory loss, confusion, and dementia. This chapter provides tips for communication with medical professionals. It includes a list of commonly-used medical terminology and abbreviations as well as guidelines for reporting your observations to the physician and tips for making the most of a visit to the doctor or hospital. This chapter also includes a list of ten indications that might mean your loved one should change doctors. By enhancing your communication skills, Chapter 2 of Caregiving at Home will help make the day-to-day work of home care flow more smoothly.