Dentist may have the challenge to get to understand the American Sign Language that is used by the hearing impaired people. This is despite that there is a number of Canada and U.S residents are able to communicate in American Sign Language other still struggle with it. Here are the five guidelines to enable the dentist to communicate effectively with their deaf patients.
Correct positioning. The communication can be affecting by your situating. You should confirm that you sitting or standing position is in perfect position with that of the patient. Consider the patient with one ear impaired so that you can target the ear that is okay. However, if it’s the case of both ears being affected you should make sure that your face is clear to the patient. A lot of light can affect the ability of the patient to see your face hence they should be removed near them. Make sure your face is free from any disruption like chewing, beard and face covering.
Avoid interference. It’s necessary you make the room free for your communication. It will be waste of time when you are talking something and the patient can’t understand. Make sure that you don’t engage in other activities when talking to a hearing impaired patient. You have to make sure that you are in the same room with the patient when you are communicating with the patient. Anytime the patient is not able to see your lips move you can be sure s/he will not grasp anything you are talking about. Also you should avoid any noise in the room even from the heating and cooling system since it’s going to affect your communications.
Communicate at your best. Make your speech as clear as possible. This means that you mention word by word as you talk. Unnecessary mouth movement will do more harm to the patient than good if any. Mentioning the names of the patient before you start addressing the patient is recommended. When you mention the patient’s name you make them concentrate with your topic. Every time you are talking to hearing impaired patient use short statements.
Know your topic. Ensure you don’t use the complicated term when addressing the patient. You can spoil the mood when you use hard terms the patients can’t understand easily. Before you start narrating the patient about her /his health condition makes sure to make a good introduction to the topic. Don’t answer the asked question at once the patient will get lost amidst.
Hire an interpreter. In case you are dealing with many deaf patients or seniors you may need an interpreter. The interpreter will make sure that both of you understand each other perfectly. At all times ensure your attention is to the patient. Check it out here for more about tips for talking to the hearing impaired patients.