Role of Communication in Health and Social Care - Part 2

Communication

‘Communication is about passing messages between people.’(http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/gcsebitesize/business/people/communicationrev1.shtml). There are different types of communication in the health and social care sector. When communication is effective the conversation is clear and no one gets confused by what the other person’s meanings. Effective communication in a health and social care environment is very important and there are many types of it. Being able to effectively communicate with the service user requires the person to be open minded in respecting other people’s thoughts and opinions in avoiding passing judgment on what that person is saying.

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Active listening is also another form of being an effective communicator as it allows you to increase your understanding of that person’s thoughts and feelings. Eye contact and facial expressions are also a form of being an effectively communicating as this shows understanding and interest in what the other person is saying, allowing one to hold the conversation for longer with more understanding and enjoyment of the conversation.

Formal communication, Informal communication:

Formal communication is including writing letters, emails, speaking clearly and using standard English rather than using ’slang’. This is often used to shorten terms and phrases to make it quicker o type when texting and messaging on Facebook. This is used when talking to friends and family, making sure that it isn’t used in the working environment is crucial as tit can be classed as unprofessional. Informal communication can be used in case of emergencies to contact ones manager, and can also be used when one is contacting the client once there is a good understanding between the care worker and the service user. It can help the user to feel more comfortable with the care worker too.

Forms of Communication

Texting

There are other ways of communicating with the service users such at text messaging, this is technologic communication. But this is only an effective way of communicating depending on the relationships between the sender and receiver. For example, one wouldn’t text their boss to have a laugh with them, but may text them if they are running late for work or are unable to make it into work on that particular day. Although they may text a colleague whom they have befriended to discuss matters which are non-work related and can also text them to tell them they are sick or that they may need someone to cover a shift for them. Another way that it could be used is if a social worker wanted to communicate with their teenage client, they could so by coming down to their way of communicating. They may choose to do this as it’s the preferred way of communicating for teenagers. An example of when this can be used is, ‘What time shall I come see you today?’ This the teenage will not feel intimidated by the situation in which their social worker is communicating in regards to.

Sign Language & Other non-verbal ways of communication.

Having the capability to effectively communicate with the service user it does not only mean verbally, it means that the carer can communicate either through verbal or non-verbal communication. Non-verbal communication is a form of interpersonal interaction by gestures and eye movements. Non-verbal communication skills such as one’s body language and hand gestures improve relationships by helping to accurately read people’s emotions understanding what they are feeling, creating trust and responding to non-verbal clues to show that you understand notice and care about what the patient is saying. In such situation where a client is deaf or hard of hearing signing is an effective way of communicating the deaf and hard of hearing. It’s effective because signing is the main way to communicate with the deaf and can sometimes be the only way of communicating with a certain deaf person as this is the only form of communication they may have learned over the years.

Music & Drama

Music can be used in a health and social care environment as therapy as well as communication; it may allow service users to understand how they would like to voice their opinions. This can also allow the service user to use technology like computers and laptops to not only listen to music but also for watching dramas which also have morals and give the service user the ability to hopes and aspirations.

Pictures & Writing

Pictures and writing would be used as communication for service users with learning difficulties to help them with speech and communication skills. They also enable the service user to see situations and life problems from a third persons view.

Braille

This is a series of raised dots that can be read with the fingers by people who are blind or whose eyesight is not sufficient for reading printed material. Teachers, parents, and others who are not visually impaired ordinarily read Braille with their eyes. Braille is not a language. Rather, it is a code by which languages such as English or Spanish may be written and read. But this allows the service user to be able to ‘read’. (http://www.rnib.org.uk/livingwithsightloss/reading/how/braille/braille/Pages/what_is_braille.aspx)

Written:

Newspapers –Inform you about what is going on throughout the world socially and economically. This is a form of communication via the media.Online, )

Books – These can be both fiction and non-fiction. The non-fiction is things like biographies. They are communication with the outside world of what the author has done throughout his life or the incidents or crisis’s they have experienced in their lifetime.

Magazines – These keep the rest if the world informed with the day to day events of the actor, singers, and other famous and popular people around the world. This is via the paparazzi, it is said that they invade their privacy to keep their fan in touch with what is going in their daily lives.

Technological:

This is communication that has been made easy by the development of the technology over the years.

Computers –

This is technology is used for communication, with this you can access the internet and a person can access social networking through this such as Yahoo, Facebook, MSN and so on.

Telephone –

This technology that has been designed to communicate with someone who is far away from others. They have to pay for it. Sometimes it is quite expensive but it is quite often affordable. When an individual have a mobile phone they do not need to worry about missing a phone call or. These are more modern and convenient as they come is smaller sizes and are easier to handle.

P2 Discuss Theories of Communication.

Theories of communication

Argyle’s Communication Cycle.

“According to Argyle, skilled interpersonal interaction (social skills) involves a cycle in which you have to translate or ‘decode’ what other people are communicating and constantly adapt your own.” (Whitehouse,2007,P19)

Argyle’s stages of the communication cycle were when an idea occurs, message coded, message sent, message received, message decoded, message understood.

The first stage is ideas occur this is the process where we think about what we are going to say and who to. The second stage, message coded, is where we think about our idea and plan what to say. The third stage is message sent, this is where we speak or sign what we are saying. The fourth stage is message received; this is where the person they are speaking to has listened to what they have to say. The fifth stage is message decoded; this is where the message can be translated if needed to. The final stage is message understood, this is where the receiver can clarify the meaning or ask any questions to clarify misunderstandings. Argyle’s theory of the communication cycle centres on six core concepts, or, a cycle.

The cycle is as follows:

1. A idea occurs. For example, the service user’s idea is that they want to buy a car.

2. Message coded. This would be them putting their desire of a car into whatever means they wish to communicate with. This may be a language, pictures, writing, or any other means of communication that they can think hold a conversation with.

3. Message sent. Here they have communicated their desire for wanting a car.

4. Message received. The person they wish to notify of their desire to have a car in this case it would be a care worker who has received our message.

5. Message decoded. The service user now must take what they have said and attempt to decode it. Now, “I want a car” is pretty straight forward0000000, but remember, not everyone is as obvious as this, and this is the step where communication breakdown may occur as they may decode our message incorrectly.

6. Message understood. Hopefully the last step was effective and carer was able to understand what the service user was trying to communicate about. Now the cycle can begin anew, with the start of a new conversation. (http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_is_the_Argyle_communication_cycle)

Tuckman’s Stages of Group Interaction

Tuckman described the four distinct stages that a group can as it comes together and starts to operate. This process can be subconscious, although an understanding of the stages can help the group reach effectiveness more quickly and less painfully. “Stage 1: Forming Individual behaviour is driven by a desire to be accepted by the others, and avoid controversy or conflict. Serious issues and feelings are avoided, and people focus on being busy with routines, such as team organisation, who does what, when to meet. But individuals are also gathering information and impressions – about each other, and about the scope of the task and how to approach it. This is a comfortable stage to be in, but the avoidance of conflict and threat means that not much actually gets done.

Stage 2: Storming Individuals in the group can only remain nice to each other for so long, as important issues start to be addressed. Some people’s patience will break early, and minor confrontations will arise that are quickly dealt with or glossed over. These may relate to the work of the group itself, or to roles and responsibilities within the group. Some will observe that it’s good to be getting into the real issues, whilst others will wish to remain in the comfort and security of stage 1. Depending on the culture of the organisation and individuals, the conflict will be more or less suppressed, but it’ll be there, under the surface. To deal with the conflict, individuals may feel they are winning or losing battles, and will look for structural clarity and rules to prevent the conflict persisting.

Stage 3: Norming As Stage 2 evolves, the “rules of engagement” for the group become established, and the scope of the group’s tasks or responsibilities is clear and agreed. Having had their arguments, they now understand each other better, and can appreciate each other’s skills and experience. Individuals listen to each other, appreciate and support each other, and are prepared to change pre-conceived views: they feel they’re part of a cohesive, effective group. However, individuals have had to work hard to attain this stage, and may resist any pressure to change – especially from the outside – for fear that the group will break up, or revert to a storm.

Stage 4: Performing Not all groups reach this stage, characterised by a state of independence and flexibility. Everyone knows each other well enough to be able to work together, and trusts each other enough to allow independent activity. Roles and responsibilities change according to need in an almost routine way. Group identity, loyalty and morale are all high, and everyone is equally task-orientated and people-orientated. This high degree of comfort means that all the energy of the group can be directed towards the tasks in hand.

Stage 5: Adjourning

This is about completion and disengagement, both from the tasks and the group members. Individuals will be proud of having achieved much and glad to have been part of such an enjoyable group. They need to recognise what they’ve done, and consciously move on.” (Whitehouse,2007,P19)

From Tuckman’s theory it is shown that by the way that people are feeling and the views they have on different topics of discussion. It also has a big impact on if the individual feels as though they belong in that group.

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