I've spoken to patients from many countries and places around the globe. Sometimes it's like watching the movie Billy Elliot or trying to understand the lyrics of South African rap-rave crew Die Antwoord. I'm aghast, did they just curse? I wouldn't know because they speak so fast my mind can't keep up. It sounded like a curse word but there was an "O" sound instead of a "U."
That's how it can be when we're explaining details or a procedure to patients. Do they really grasp the concepts I've just explained or are they simply nodding their head in agreement? Pictures can help and sometimes I'll draw to better explain details. This is more for the family's benefit when I realize the patient is unable to follow what I'm talking about. Gesticulating is an art and if you watch enough Charlie Chaplin movies like me, you can get your point across without saying a word.
Talking slowly with appropriate pauses is usually the best way for me to communicate with patients. Since they've had so many changes in their life in such a short period of time, they may not be completely focused on me and what we're doing. If the gym is busy, patients can easily become distracted by other conversations going on around them. When this occurs, I'll have the patient get up and walk outside the gym in the hallway or even outside the building away from the distractions.
Keeping concepts simple for THA patients with phrases like, "Don't bend, twist or cross your hip," instead of the more detailed explanation that's on their handout can more readily be understood by them, especially if they have a memory deficit. Long details of what we do and why can often be placed aside as well, so we don't confuse the patient during the session. How about you, what is the best way for you to communicate with the patients you see?