In light of the Corona Virus (COVID-19), Australia has introduced strict new social distancing protocols that restrict or prohibit people from meeting in person; these include in venues such as pubs, gyms and indoor sporting venues, cinemas, restaurants and cafes, galleries, community facilities and attending religious gatherings or places of worship.
For those people living in Residential Aged Care Facilities, they are now limited to visits that are short in duration with no more than two visitors at a time.
During a time where we are restricted in our ability to see people face-to-face as many usually would, it is important that we make the most of other communication methods to stay connected to our loved ones. These days, we are lucky to have technology to help us with this. From video calls, text, emails and phone calls, technology lets us communicate with others through different means.
Whether people experience communication difficulties or not, different methods of communication can enhance our connection and conversation in different ways. Here are a few ways we can stay connected with our loved ones during social distancing and how they can support effective communication.
Video calls are a great way of communicating and staying in touch in real time. Video calls provide visual and auditory information, supporting everyone’s understanding of the messages being conveyed and making communication more accessible to people who may have difficulty hearing, reading or writing. Video calls allow people to converse and complete everyday activities together, like cooking, eating, watching movies, exercising, completing therapy and playing games!
Phone calls are another great way of staying connected in real time. Phone calls provide auditory information and make it easier to convey and understand tone of voice, jokes and information. Phone calls are easy and available for most people and can make communication more accessible for people who have difficulty reading or writing.
Text messages are a quick and easy way to communicate. They allow for short amounts of text, images and videos to be quickly sent between friends, family and colleagues. Text messages provide visual and written information. This can be an effective way of communicating for people who have difficulty hearing, remembering information or being understood by others. While it’s not in real time like video and phone calls, text messaging still allows for messages to be sent and received quickly!
Emails are also a quick and easy way to communicate. Emails provide visual and written information and allow for text, images and videos to be quickly sent between friends, family and colleagues. This can be an effective way of communicating for people who have difficulty hearing, remembering information or being understood by others. While it’s not in real time like video and phone calls, or as fast as text messaging, emails let you convey larger messages and keep a written record of conversations.
It’s important we all stay connected at this time and what better way than to make the most of the communication methods many of us already use. Through finding a method or methods that suits you, your strengths and lifestyle, hopefully we can support ourselves and each other during a very strange time!
If you have any questions or concerns about your communication and how best you can continue to do this at this time, please contact Southern Highlands Speech Pathology on (02) 4862 5063 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.