Communication problems associated with hearing loss and dementia are very common for residents living in aged care facilities and 95% of residents live with at least one communication disorder.
Aphasia is a complex condition not widely known in the community, however, it can cause devastating communication loss. It is a language disorder that can occur suddenly after a stroke or head injury, or develop slowly from a growing brain tumour or disease.
Aphasia affects approximately one third of stroke survivors, and 60% of these people still experience the effects of aphasia twelve months after their stroke.
While intellect is commonly not affected, aphasia affects a person's ability to express and understand written and spoken language. This might result in:
Living with aphasia can cause depression, withdrawal, and reduced self-esteem and self-efficacy. Conversation is about connecting with people and we do this by engaging about interesting and relevant experiences.
There needs to be comprehension and expression from each communication partner. With aphasia, there is difficulty in these language areas, but it is not that language is lost, it is that it needs to be accessed differently.
Food Solutions speech pathologists are trained to assess and help people with aphasia and can give family and carers useful strategies to aid their communication.
These quick start tips from the work of Joanne Lasker and Kathryn Garret (2007) will support accessing conversation and connections.
Here are some examples used to help chat about Corona Virus: