Dirty Words Senior Vocabulary .pdf

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Original filename: Dirty Words - Senior Vocabulary.pdf
Author: Natalie Clarke

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Dirty Words
Vocabulary Considerations When Communicating
to Older Adult Audiences

Preferred Synonyms








It is best to use a neutral & flexible general term to describe those in later life, such as
“older” (people, adults, individuals, Americans, etc.)
Age-specific references (such as “those over 50”; people 65 and up”; etc.)
Elder/elders (not “elderly”)
Middle-age
Midlife
Boomer (but not “Baby Boomer”)
Mature

Disliked Terms













Baby boomers
Elderly (unless used as an adjective)
Senior citizen(s)
Feisty
Spry
Sweet
Little
Feeble
Eccentric
Senile
Grandmotherly
Still (as a modifier: still driving; still jogging; etc.)

“Replacement” Words for Senior Housing
“Dirty” Words

Better Alternatives

Facility

community, campus, neighborhood, establishment

Unit

home, residence, apartment home

Bed

accommodations, residence

Aged/Elderly

people, individuals, those aged 62 or better

Patient

resident, person, individual, member

Semi-private

shared accommodation

Alzheimer’s unit

memory support area, memory care

“Dirty” Words

Better Alternatives

Dining room

restaurant, café, bistro

Tray service

take-out, home delivery service

Arts & crafts room

art studio, artists’ workshop, creative arts center

Activities

recreation, cultural arts, events, hobbies, art, education

Fitness center

health club, gym

Bus

transportation service, coach, shuttle, chauffeur service

Beauty shop

hair salon

Gift shop

market, store, boutique, emporium

Environment

atmosphere, ambience

Appointment

presentation, tour, visit, meeting

Care

service, amenity, attention, personal services

Admission

move-in

Discharge

move-out, change residences, leave, go home, depart

Nursing home

health care center, skilled nursing


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