4 Things That Might Solve Communication Problems Between You and Your Patient
Even though we try our hardest to avoid it, miscommunications happen. Said miscommunications evolve into fights and what’s sad about this is most of our communication problems are with the people that surround us, such as our family and friends. When you’re in the healthcare industry, your relationship with your patient is unlike any other; it’s intimate. You spend most—if not—every day together. If you find yourself having trouble communicating with your patient, Above and Beyond Caregiving, Inc. suggests the following:
- Trace the root cause
Whenever we get angry or frustrated with something, we unconsciously bring out that anger or frustration into other aspects of our life. If you feel like there’s something off about your patient, such as exhibiting a disposition that’s new, try to figure out the root cause of the sudden shift in behavior. This might be difficult to do, especially if your patient isn’t that open when it comes to expressing their feelings. Try to broach potential causes of their sudden shift of behavior and figure out ways to help them.
- Ask for advice
Even if you’ve spent a lot of time together by now, there are still things that you don’t know about your patient, especially things that aren’t placed on their medical records. If you suddenly find yourself having difficulty in taking care of them, seek help from your co-workers and the patient’s family. It might be embarrassing for some to do this, but even the best people in the field wouldn’t have made it if they didn’t ask for help every now and then.
- Exercise your patience
It goes without saying that this is one of the most obvious pieces of advice out there. When you’re in the healthcare industry, you perform various kinds of activities such as personal care. It’s going to take a while for your patient to get used to you and you to them, so the first few weeks are crucial in building a good relationship between the two of you. If you’ve been with your patient for a while now, and they’re suddenly acting up, put yourself in their shoes. Imagine that you’ve switched roles, and although there’s no hierarchy when it comes to who has it better or has it worse, the elderly are at a disadvantage because of their age.
- Be familiar with each other’s limits
This might be hard to do when you’re already having miscommunication problems with your patient. It’s recommended to get to know each other first right off the bat rather than just figuring out each other through non-verbal cues. In order for your patient to be comfortable and safe, and for you to work effectively, you two have to work together. A lot of caregiver-patient relationships don’t work out because it’s treated as a one-way street.
When you had fights with the people you love or the people you work with, what did you do to resolve the conflict? Share your experience and advice in the comments section below.