5 Conditions that Can Hinder a Senior’s Ability to Communicate

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Health-Related Issues that Make Communication Difficult in Rhode Island

Any disorder that affects hearing, speech generation, and speech understanding can make it difficult for seniors to communicate with their caregivers and family members. Here are five health conditions that can impair communication. 

1. Strokes

Strokes cause damage to isolated parts of the brain, and approximately 25 percent of stroke survivors develop aphasia, a disorder characterized by difficulty understanding and producing speech. Aphasia symptoms vary among individuals, and some seniors might understand spoken language but face difficulty speaking. Others have difficulty understanding but are able to speak clearly. Speech therapy, post-stroke care, and adaptive devices can be helpful for stroke survivors with aphasia. 

Recovering from a stroke, managing the symptoms of Alzheimer’s, and a variety of other health-related situations can make it difficult for a senior to continue living at home without someone there to help. Rhode Island live-in care professionals are trained to help seniors who need 24/7 assistance. With the help of a live-in caregiver, your elderly loved one can maintain a higher quality of life while aging in place.

2. Dementia

Some estimates suggest that around one-third of all seniors will develop some form of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease, which is progressive and incurable. As the disease begins to affect the parts of the brain responsible for understanding and producing speech, communication difficulties often arise. 

3. Parkinson’s Disease

Around 1 million Americans are currently living with Parkinson’s disease. Parkinson’s progressively damages the part of the brain that controls the muscles necessary to produce speech. In later stages of the disease, speech can become unintelligible. 

Experienced professional caregivers can be a wonderful source of support for seniors who are living with Parkinson’s or other serious conditions. Families looking for top-rated elderly home care providers can reach out to Home Care Assistance. From respite care to specialized Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care, there are many ways we can make life easier for seniors and their loved ones.

4. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive degenerative disease that affects the nerves that control the muscles. It’s usually diagnosed in the mid-50s to 60s. As the disease progresses, seniors experience increased difficulty with producing speech due to muscle atrophy.

5. Hearing Loss

Around one-third of people older than 60 have some hearing loss. That figure rises to one-half by age 80. Hearing loss can make it difficult for seniors to understand the speech of others. A variety of hearing aids and adaptive devices are available for treating hearing loss. However, many cases of hearing loss are overlooked and therefore not treated. 

Seniors can face a variety of age-related challenges. Though some families choose to take on the caregiving duties, there may come a time when they need a trusted Rhode Island senior home care provider. Families sometimes need respite from their duties so they can focus on their other responsibilities, and some seniors need around-the-clock assistance that their families are not able to provide. Home Care Assistance is here to help. Call (401) 284-0979 today to speak with a friendly and experienced Care Manager to formulate a home care plan for your loved one.


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