This work will explain factors that may influence communication and interpersonal interactions in Health and Social care environments and also explain, review and evaluate strategies used in Health and Social Care environments to overcome barriers to effective communication and interpersonal interactions.Learning Disabilities – They affect the way a person understands information and how they communicate. Around 1.5 million people in the UK suffer from learning disabilities. People with a learning disability have difficulty; understanding new or complex information, learning new skills and Coping independently.ADHD (Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) – What is it?It is a disorder that effects a person’s behaviour, people with ADHD will have different development and activities of their brain causing them to act out in a way that is different to others, they suffer various symptoms that affect the way that they pay attention, listen and follow directions, patience or sit still. People who suffer from ADHD will find it hard to control their speech and actions. I is the most common learning difficulty and signs of it start to show at the age of 3-7. Invalid source specified.How does it act as a barrier to communication?ADHD is a barrier to communication because it causes restlessness, uncontrollable actions and speech, these things may distract a professional from doing their job, as they have an abnormal attention span they may have to get the professional to keep repeating themselves which could potentially cause confusion and/or frustration from both the professional and the person suffering from ADHD, children suffering from ADHD process language differently so the communication will have to be tailored to how they process communication, this difference will cause them to go off topic at times and struggle to find the correct words to use. Communication should take place in a quiet environment where there are no distractions for them this increases the effectivity of the communication as it helps them to listen more advanced than they would in a loud and busy environment with lots of distractions.Invalid source specified.Dyslexia- What is dyslexia? Dyslexia is a type of learning disability that can affect and create problems with reading, writing and spelling. However intelligence isn’t affected, unlike some other learning disabilities. Someone with dyslexia may mix up letters and words during reading, struggle with spelling, struggle to write information down when told it verbally, read and write slowly, and may find it hard to plan and organise, as well as many more symptoms. It is estimated that 1 in 10 people in the UK are impacted by dyslexia, and is a lifelong disability which can cause challenges every day. (NHS, 2018) Why is dyslexia a barrier to communication? Many people with dyslexia can find it hard to communicate. Speaking and listening can be more difficult with people who have dyslexia, as they can struggle with pronunciation, stumbling over words, forgetfulness and can find it hard to remember and say numbers in sequence. They can also find it hard to focus on the person they are communicating with, and can find they are often distracted from the conversation. It can also be harder for people with dyslexia to remember what they have been told during verbal communication, and can struggle to take everything in that a person is telling them, therefore can find it frustrating.Autism- What is it?Autism is a learning difficulty that affects an individual’s communication, interests, behaviour and perception on the world and the environment they live in. Children portray symptoms of autism before the age of three, but are not normally diagnosed till after the age of three. Statistics state that boys are diagnosed with autism more than girls and that one in a hundred people in the UK are diagnosed with autism. People with autism are usually put through language and speech therapy to try and help with the control over autism, but there is no cure for autism. People with autism have issues with interaction and struggle with eye contact, body language, gestures and facial expressions. Not only this, they prefer to be alone than with others. They struggle to have and create their own language, so they tend to repeat words and phrases others say. Also, some like to stick to a routine and any changes within that routine can cause them major discomfort. A lot of these issues can be viewed in early childhood. Why is this a Barrier to Communication? Autism is a barrier to communication, as people with autism struggle to understand other people’s emotions and tend to not pay attention to what people say. To overcome this, always say their name so they know you are talking to them, make sure you have their attention before asking them questions and use their interests to engage them. It is also difficult for them to understand what people are saying, to help speak slowly, pause so they have time to process exactly what you’re saying, reduce the amount of questions asked, and use non-verbal communication like eye contact and facial expressions. Furthermore, they perceive everything as literal, so they struggle with ‘figure-of-speech’ and sarcasm, so it prevents them from chatting with people and feeling belonged. Cerebral Palsy- What is it?Cerebral Palsy a disorder in which affects the movement of a person, Cerebral palsy occurs from birth due to a problem in the brain. The Symptoms delayed/ arrested development and weakness in the arms and legs. There are various severities of the condition thus affecting the symptoms. It occur if the baby has a bleed in its brain, or lack of oxygen and blood supply to the brain cells. There is no cure for cerebral Palsy but I can be cared for through therapy helping speech and movement. (NHS, 2017) Why is it a barrier to communication?A symptom of cerebral palsy is difficulty to control the muscles in the tongue which creates a barrier as speech is not clear and quite slurred making it hard to understand a person with severe cerebral palsy to speak, In extremely sever cases people may be unable to make any sound whatsoever therefor this causes a great issue in communication and health and social care settings. (Admin, 2017)Down’s Syndrome- What is it?Down’s syndrome is a genetic condition which is caused by an extra chromosome, it is not usually inherited from the parents. Down’s syndrome typically causes some level of learning disability and people who have it usually display certain physical characteristics. Babies are usually diagnosed soon after birth and may have; a small mouth with a tongue that may stick out, a flat back of the head and a below average birth weight and length. Every mother has a small chance of having a bay with Down’s syndrome, but the likelihood increases with the age of the mother. Along with learning difficulties, people with Down’s syndrome also usually have health problems, such as;• Heart disorders, such as Congenital Heart Disease• Hearing and Visions problems• Thyroid problems, such as an underactive thyroid• Recurrent infections, such as pneumonia Why is it a barrier to communication?There are many reasons why Down’s syndrome can be barrier of communication.Visions problems can affect communication as they will have difficulty seeing, therefore they may struggle to read and learn at school, especially if they don’t go to a special needs school. If they have trouble hearing they may also have trouble speaking. They will also have trouble hearing, therefore due to both of these facts, people with Down’s syndrome who have these problems may find it difficult having conversations with other people. Some people with Down’s syndrome don’t have very good verbal skills. This means they may struggle talking and holding a conversation with another person. This would then lead them to not being able to express themselves, tell other people want or need and they also wouldn’t be able to tell people how they feel.The strategies to overcome a barrier to communication caused by learning difficulties;o Makaton- This strategy is the use of hand actions, words and expressions to help a child with learning difficulties and delayed speech development to learn words and how to ask for things such as; drinks, food and to use the toilet, it is used to help children with autism and down syndrome, The use of Makaton helps people with delayed speech to speak, explain feelings and needs through the use of actions which overcomes the barrier to communication, There are many advantages to the use of Makaton, it is easy to use, very interactive and fun and can be taught easily, there are many disadvantages, Makaton needs to be taught and can be hard to remember for some people, it also needs coordination and multitasking for it to be successful. Makaton can be used in a school environment to help children with Down syndrome or autism to learn effectively when their speech is underdeveloped. In My opinion Makaton is a fun way of communication and can be very effective but I feel like it takes time to learn properly and be executed to be understandable. (Anon., n.d.)o Sensory Rooms-A sensory room is a special room designed to give a sensory experience to a child who suffers from a learning difficulty like autism, it can help to relive a child from anger or stress and help them cool down, and it can also trigger a creative mindset. The aim of these rooms is to give a sensory experience that can relax a child suffering from autism and possibly helping them to develop communication by relaxing them allowing them to interact and develop their social skills. The advantages of these rooms include, a fun and colourful experience for the child, They are safe and soft so there are no health and safety risks, The disadvantages are that these rooms are extortionate to build, the child would also have to be accompanied by an adult at all times, these rooms feature bright lights and noises so could possibly trigger an epileptic seizure. A sensory room can be used in various health and social care setting such as to help with mental health, the colours and sounds relax people and can help to control depression or anger, therefore it could be used in a doctors or therapist setting. I think apart from the price of sensory room that they are an effective way of overcoming barriers in communication and they can help many people. (Anon., n.d.) (Admin, 2017)o Colour Therapy (Chromotherapy) -This strategy involves the use of colour to alleviate several different emotions, it is said that each colour represents multiple emotions, It can be used in the form of lights, fabric, liquid, colouring books etc. It is a holistic practiced targeted towards people with depression and anxiety, in order to help them to relax and de-stress, but it can also help people with delayed communication development to express their feelings using a chart. It is said to help relax people during stress and relieve negative emotions as well as acting as a way to communicate non-verbally about emotions and feelings. The advantages of this are that anybody can take part in colour therapy, it is cheap and simple to do and it is also a fun way to express emotions and feelings. The disadvantages are that it is a holistic practice and has not been scientifically proven to be effective, it can take up time and people may be too impatient to take part and it could also cause confusion as different colours can express multiple feelings and moods. It can be used in therapy like counselling for depression or autism, to help the person relax and stay calm, it could also be used in education systems like nursery or infant schools. I think that it is a fun strategy but may not always be effective and could cause more confusion and have a negative impact on the service user, it is a less professional practice than other strategies. (Anon., 2008)o Picture Cards/ Boards- This type of strategy combines words and pitures in the form of cards or on a board, they have actions like; toilet, food, feeling sick, hurt or tired.They are used to help people with limited expressive language ability, it helps aid the child to ask for things and express their feeling without having to communicate verbally (Logsdon, 2018), There are varius advanatages to this strategey; it is easy, affordable, it can also help people with autism or OCD to plan out their day, they are interactive and also help to develop communication through pictures. There are also a few negatives to this strategy; some children may not understand the pictures, it does not help to improve their speech and can delay their speech development, there may not be certain actions that the person needs to express in the form of cards so it may be limited. This strategy can be used in schools or nursery for a child struggling with learning disabilities to communicate with their helper or teacher. Personally, I think that these cards and boards are a great way to help communication and overcome the barriers caused by specific learning disabilities. o Time Out Cards- These cards can be used in multiple environments, they help childern to takwe time away from stressful situations by showing the cards, it helps them to relax by removing themselves from situations that may be too stressful or frustrating for them. This can help overcome communication issues by helping a child with autism or any other learning disability to calm down and take time out of a class or seesion and go to a place they find ‘safe’, it can help for a teacher to provide support to a student if they need it as it is a physical sign of distress. The advantages are that they are; cheap, easy to follow and understand, they can also make a child feel special and boos their esteem, there are ofcourse negatives about them; people can over use them , they could cause someone to feel left out, if used in schools it might delay the childs intellectual development by skipping class. They can be used in a classroom environment if a child feels stressed by a certain situation or topic in class they can just show the teacher their card and leave the room to relax and have some time out. In my opinion these cards are good way to communicate non verbally as a child does nopt have to explain their need to leave class but can just get up and go if need be. (Anon., 2015) The strategies to overcome a barrier to communication caused by Language and Culture.Language- A combination of words and phrases used by a specific country or region to communicate with people in that same region, an example of language is English. (Dictionary, n.d.)Culture- the Characteristics, believes, actions and words of a specific group of people e.g. countries or religions. E.g. in African cultures- ‘When male children reach age 5 or 6 in the Northern Angolan Songo tribe, they are sent to live with their uncles on their mother’s side.’ (Anon., n.d.)Why is language and culture a barrier to communication?Language is a barrier to communication as there are various different languages, if the service user speaks and understands a different language to the professional then it creates a problem as they will find it hard to understand each other so the message that is trying to be portrayed will not be portrayed or understood.Culture is also a barrier to communication because the professional may not be aware of a traditional practice or belief of the service user creating a problem and confusion in the relationship between the two. Strategies to overcome the barriers;• Translator; A translator is a person who listens to both sides of the conversation and changes the words from the service user into the language of the professional or vice versa. This makes it easier and helps the two to speak with a mutual understanding. This helps to overcome the barrier as it converts both languages into a language that is understandable for both sides of the conversation, enabling the service user and professional to understand each other’s needs and advice. The advantages are that it enables people from different background who speak fluently in different languages to communicate effectively, along with this positive there are lots of negatives; the conversations may be private, sensitive and confidential in which the service user may feel uncomfortable with the translator hearing and understanding their problems, translators are not cheap and can be extremely expensive and translations may not always be 100% accurate and may be too thorough with the translation leading to misunderstanding and possible confusion.
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