Deterioration Of Verbal Communication

Deterioration Of Verbal Communication

Deterioration Of Verbal Communication


Nursing Diagnosis Definition

The nursing diagnosis for deterioration of verbal communication is defined as "a disruption in the ability to use or understand spoken or written language due to identified factors, characterized by difficulty speaking, difficulty understanding spoken or written language, or difficulty reading or writing." This diagnosis is used to identify patients experiencing challenges in verbal communication due to various factors.

Defining Characteristics


  • Patient reports difficulty speaking or understanding spoken or written language: Subjective complaint indicating problems in verbal communication.
  • Patient reports difficulty reading or writing: Subjective observation of challenges in written communication.


  • Observation of difficulty speaking, understanding spoken or written language, or difficulty reading or writing: Objective assessment indicating issues in verbal and written communication.
  • Positive results on communication assessment (e.g. Aphasia screening, hearing test): Objective findings from assessments confirming communication difficulties.

Related Factors

  • Cognitive impairment: Conditions such as Alzheimer's disease or traumatic brain injury can impair cognitive function, affecting verbal communication abilities.
  • Hearing loss: Auditory impairments, whether congenital or acquired, can hinder the reception and interpretation of spoken language.
  • Stroke: Cerebrovascular accidents can damage areas of the brain responsible for language processing, leading to speech and comprehension difficulties.
  • Head injury: Traumatic brain injuries can disrupt neurological pathways involved in verbal communication, resulting in speech and language impairments.
  • Dementia: Progressive cognitive decline associated with dementia disorders can progressively impact language skills, including speaking and understanding.
  • Brain disorders: Conditions such as Parkinson's disease or multiple sclerosis can affect neurological function, including verbal communication abilities.
  • Age: Advanced age is often accompanied by natural cognitive decline and sensory impairments, contributing to communication challenges.
  • Certain medications (e.g. sedatives, antidepressants): Some medications may have side effects such as drowsiness, confusion, or impaired cognitive function, which can affect verbal communication.

Risk Population

  • Individuals with cognitive impairment: Those diagnosed with conditions like Alzheimer's disease, dementia, or intellectual disabilities.
  • Individuals with hearing loss: Those with congenital or acquired hearing impairments, including age-related hearing loss.
  • Individuals who have had a stroke or head injury: Those who have experienced cerebrovascular accidents or traumatic brain injuries affecting language centers.
  • Individuals with dementia or brain disorders: Those with progressive neurological conditions affecting cognitive function and language abilities.
  • Elderly individuals: Older adults who may experience age-related cognitive decline and sensory impairments.
  • Individuals taking certain medications: Those prescribed medications known to affect cognitive function or cause sedation.

Associated Problems

  • Inability to communicate needs and understand information: Difficulty expressing oneself and comprehending spoken or written language, leading to ineffective communication.
  • Decreased social interaction and isolation: Communication difficulties can impede social engagement and interaction, potentially leading to feelings of loneliness and isolation.
  • Increased risk for medication errors: Misunderstandings in verbal or written instructions may lead to errors in medication administration, posing risks to patient safety.
  • Decreased ability to perform activities of daily living: Challenges in communication may hinder the individual's ability to independently carry out daily tasks and self-care activities.
  • Decreased quality of life: Communication impairments can significantly impact overall quality of life, affecting relationships, independence, and emotional well-being.

Suggestions for Use

  • Assess the patient's communication abilities and identify any specific difficulties: Evaluate the patient's verbal and written communication skills.
  • Identify and address any underlying causes of deterioration of verbal communication (e.g. cognitive impairment, hearing loss): Investigate and manage factors contributing to communication difficulties.
  • Provide communication aids as needed (e.g. hearing aids, communication boards): Offer assistive devices to facilitate communication.
  • Involve speech-language pathologist and audiologist in the care of the patient: Collaborate with specialized professionals for comprehensive management.
  • Encourage the patient to participate in communication therapy: Motivate the patient to engage in interventions aimed at improving communication skills.
  • Educate the patient and their family on communication strategies and techniques: Provide guidance on effective communication methods.

Suggested Alternative Nursing Diagnosis

  • Ineffective verbal communication: Refers to the inability to exchange information via spoken words in a clear, concise, and meaningful manner, affecting understanding and conveying of messages.
  • Impaired verbal communication: Denotes difficulties in expressing oneself verbally or understanding spoken language, leading to ineffective communication interactions.
  • Impaired spoken language: Indicates challenges specifically related to speaking, articulating, or forming words, hindering effective verbal communication.
  • Impaired written language: Highlights difficulties in reading, writing, or comprehending written communication, resulting in ineffective exchange of written information.

Usage Tips

  • Consider the patient's overall health status and any underlying medical conditions when making a diagnosis: Take into account the patient's medical history and current health status.
  • Be specific when documenting the factors that contribute to deterioration of verbal communication: Provide detailed documentation of the causes of communication difficulties.
  • Consider using additional diagnoses to address associated problems (e.g. Ineffective verbal communication, impaired spoken language): Supplement the primary diagnosis with additional ones as needed.

NOC Results

  • Communication: The patient is able to effectively communicate their needs and understand information provided by healthcare professionals. This includes verbal and nonverbal communication methods.
  • Comprehending: The patient demonstrates understanding of spoken and written language. They can accurately interpret instructions, follow conversations, and comprehend written materials.
  • Expressing: The patient expresses themselves effectively using spoken and written language. They can articulate their thoughts, feelings, and needs clearly and appropriately.

NIC Interventions

  • Communication Aids: Provide communication aids such as hearing aids or communication boards as needed. These aids can enhance the patient's ability to receive and convey messages effectively.
  • Speech-Language Pathologist Consultation: Involve a speech-language pathologist in the care of the patient. A speech-language pathologist can assess the patient's communication abilities, provide targeted interventions, and develop personalized therapy plans.
  • Audiologist Consultation: Involve an audiologist in the care of the patient. An audiologist can assess and manage hearing-related issues, recommend appropriate hearing devices, and provide counseling on hearing conservation.
  • Therapy: Encourage the patient to participate in communication therapy. This may include speech therapy sessions aimed at improving speech production, language comprehension, and overall communication skills.
  • Education: Provide education to the patient and their family on communication strategies and techniques. Educate them on methods to facilitate effective communication, such as using clear and concise language, employing visual aids, and practicing active listening.

Isabella White

Hello to all nursing enthusiasts! I'm Isabella White and I'm thrilled to welcome you to this space dedicated to the exciting world of nursing. Let me share a little about myself and what we can expect together on this journey. About Me: Nursing is more than just a profession to me, it's a calling. When I'm not caring for my patients or learning more about health and wellness, you'll find me enjoying the great outdoors, exploring new trails in nature, or savoring a good cup of coffee with close friends. I believe in the balance between caring for others and self-care, and I'm here to share that philosophy with you. My Commitment to You: In this space, I commit to being your reliable guide in the world of nursing. Together, we'll explore health topics, share practical tips, and support each other on our journeys to wellness. But we'll also celebrate life beyond the hospital walls, finding moments of joy in the everyday and seeking adventures that inspire us to live fully. In summary, this is a place where nursing meets life, where we'll find support, inspiration, and hopefully a little fun along the way. Thank you for joining me on this exciting journey. Welcome to a world of care, knowledge, and connection! Sincerely, Isabella White

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