SHC 21: Introduction to communication in health, social care or children’s and young people’s settings
1. Understand why communication is important in the work setting
1.1 People communicate by many ways including non-verbal highlighting facial expression, eye contact, body language, physical gestures such as touch, dress and behavior, along with verbal including tone and pitch of voice. The age and knowledge of a person one is communicating with, also dictates somewhat the amount of vocabulary i.e words and terms used too . People communicate to share ideas, information, educate, build relationships, express feelings and emotions, to be social, ask questions and expand their knowledge and share different experiences.
1.2 Effective communication affects all aspects of work. Talking to a child, parent, work colleague, friend or boss, takes on a variety of different levels of communication. Maybe more smiles are given when talking to a child rather than to a boss figure. Having a good understanding of effective communication in the work place, can help avoid misinterpretation and misunderstandings especially important in ensuing a safe work place. Talking and listening to work colleagues, children and parents builds professional and personal relationships, helping establish trust between all parties.
1.3 Observing reactions when communicating with people are especially important to ensure understanding on both parties. Maybe you have acknowledged that they may not be feeling well, are feeling sad or are excited about something through their body language. Reading someone’s expression can tell you a lot about the mood the person is in. Avoiding eye contact, can also indicate that the person feels uneasy. If someone is angry, they may need time to calm down, acknowledging peoples actions and reactions can help lift or diffuse a situation. It is not advisable to continue to verbally talk to someone from a different country who does not understand you, maybe you can seek the help of a translator to help communicate or use picture cards. If someone has limited hearing and sight, ensure you’re not in a dimly lit room and use visual aids in bigger print to help the person understand what your communicating to them. Being able to recognize the ways in people communicate even without words is important to understand and be aware of.
2. Be able to meet the communication and language needs, wishes and preferences of the individuals
2.1. To find out an individual’s communication and language needs, wishes and preferences there are many ways to find out this information, it could be from the individual themselves, from a parent, teacher, friend of the individual or their carer. There may be care notes, medical notes or documents from authorities which you can access to obtain this information if no rules of confidentiality are broken, so you can see how they’re being managed, ways of communicating that helps and any progresses that have been made. Some preferences may also be based on the individuals beliefs, values or culture. It is important not to judge people for they may resist communication for fear of being judged or reprimanded. Offer reassurance about confidentiality and explain what this means. Also make sure the setting is fit for purpose, privacy is important. The individual and care worker should not hold a personal and private discussion in a room full of people, whereby the conversation could be overheard.
2.2 Demonstrate communication methods that meet the individuals needs wishes and preferences could include using a louder pitch in voice when talking to someone who has hard of hearing and ensuring there is no background distractive noise. If someone has difficulty reading, audio books can help. If an individual has dyslexia, then reading the information out loud to them, can help them better understand . A child having difficulty in remembering, may find a tape or video...
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