List of Tips for healthy communication

Let’s Talk Month: 9 Tips for Better Communication with Your Child

October is celebrated as “Let’s Talk Month,” a time to emphasize the importance of effective communication between parents and their children. Here at Mountain Hope Good Shepherd Clinic, we value family health, and believe that open and honest communication is the cornerstone of a strong parent-child relationship. It builds trust, fosters understanding, and helps children grow into confident, emotionally healthy individuals. UNICEF provides valuable insights on how to enhance parent-child communication, offering nine key strategies to help you connect with your child on a deeper level.

A key point is to be an Active Listener: Active listening is the foundation of good communication. When your child speaks, give them your full attention. Make eye contact, nod, and encourage them to express themselves. Being an active listener shows that you value what your child has to say. List of Tips for healthy communication

  1. Avoid Bribes: Bribing your child to get them to do something can undermine their sense of responsibility and the intrinsic motivation to do it. Instead try to explain the benefits or consequences of their actions, allowing them to make informed choices.
  2. Speak Clearly and Simply: Use language that is age-appropriate and easy for your child to understand. Avoid jargon and complex terminology. Clarity in your speech makes it easier for your child to grasp your messages.
  3. Use Noticing Statements: Noticing statements involve acknowledging your child’s feelings or actions without judgment. For example, “I noticed you seem sad today. Would you like to talk about it?” This technique can help your child feel respected and loved.
  4. Explain Feelings: Help your child understand their emotions by explaining your feelings and emotions when appropriate. Share how you deal with various emotions, teaching them healthy ways to manage their feelings.
  5. Use Reflective Listening: Reflective listening involves summarizing what your child has said to ensure you’ve understood correctly. It also shows that you value their thoughts and feelings. For example, “I hear you saying that you’re upset because your friend didn’t include you in the game.”
  6. Focus on Behaviors, Not the Child: When addressing behavioral issues, it’s essential to focus on the behavior itself, not on labeling or criticizing your child. For example, say, “Hitting is not allowed” instead of “You are a bad kid for hitting.” This approach promotes positive behavior change.
  7. Lead by Example: Children learn by observing their parents. Model the communication skills you want them to develop. This includes being respectful, empathetic, and understanding in your interactions with others.
  8. Have Fun Together: Quality time spent together is a great opportunity for open communication. Play, engage in activities your child enjoys, and create an environment where they feel comfortable talking to you.

Let’s Talk Month is a reminder of the vital role that communication plays in building strong parent-child relationships. By applying these nine effective communication strategies, you can foster trust, understanding, and emotional well-being in your child. As you actively listen, avoid bribes, speak clearly, use noticing statements, explain feelings, practice reflective listening, focus on behaviors, lead by example, and have fun together, you’ll create a nurturing environment where your child feels respected, loved, and heard. These essential skills will benefit them throughout their lives, helping them become confident and emotionally resilient individuals. So, take the time to talk and connect with your child this October and beyond.

Get Your Flu Shot card in hands of Medical Doctor. Medical and health care.

Why Getting a Flu Shot is Especially Important This Year

It’s that time of year again! Fall has arrived, and following closely behind, flu season. Have you gotten your annual flu shot yet?

Nearly every person ages 6 months and older needs to be vaccinated against the flu each year. While that’s what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends for every year, getting your annual flu shot is especially important in 2020. But why is that?

Read on as our Mountain Hope Good Shepherd Clinic team answers some commonly asked questions.

Why Do I Need a Flu Shot Every Year?
Before we dive into why flu shots are so important this year, let’s first answer this common question.

Many people wonder why the flu shot isn’t like many childhood vaccines, where you get one shot—or maybe a shot followed by a booster shot some time later—and are all set.

It’s because the flu vaccine works differently. Each year, different strains of the flu (also known as influenza) spread around, causing illness. Because of that, the flu vaccine is reformulated each year to protect against the strains of the flu thought to be most common that flu season.

The flu vaccine typically provides protection against two strains of influenza A and two strains of influenza B.

While you can still get the flu after getting a flu shot, it’s less likely. In addition, even if you do get the flu after being vaccinated, your version of the flu will be shorter in duration and less severe.

What Makes the Flu Shot Important This Year?
Knowing that you should be vaccinated every year, why is a flu shot even more important in 2020? It’s because of the unique circumstances we find ourselves in currently.

This year, the flu season—which begins around November and continues through March or April—will overlap with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Consider this: In the 2018–2019 flu season, more than 35 million Americans got the flu, 16.5 million went to the doctor because of the flu, 49,000 people were hospitalized, and more than 34,000 died.

With COVID-19 already stressing out the American healthcare system, if patients start flooding into doctors’ offices and hospitals with the flu, it could cause chaos.

Getting your family vaccinated against the flu can reduce the likelihood that you will need to be hospitalized due to the illness, cutting down on the risk of what experts are calling a “twindemic.”

When Should I Get My Flu Shot?
Experts recommend getting your annual flu shot each year by the end of October. This allows your body enough time to build up antibodies against the flu after receiving the vaccination, a process that takes around two weeks.

If you aren’t able to get your flu shot by then, it’s OK. Getting a flu shot after that time will still provide you with some protection for the rest of the flu season.

What Else Can I Do to Prevent the Flu?
Many of the same habits we’ve been practicing since early this year to prevent the spread of COVID-19 are also helpful in reducing your risk of the flu:

● Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds at a time.
● Use a hand sanitizer containing at least 60 percent alcohol if soap and water aren’t
● Disinfect commonly touched surfaces and objects, such as doorknobs and your phone,
● Wear a mask when in public and unable to keep six feet between yourself and others.
● Avoid crowds and large gatherings.
● Don’t touch your face with unwashed hands.

Need a flu shot? Stay tuned to our Facebook page for the latest information about when the flu vaccine will be available, or call (865) 774-7684.


New Horizons Class find new ways to help during COVID-19 Crisis

It has become a tradition for the New Horizons Discussion Class from First Baptist Church of Sevierville to visit Mountain Hope Good Shepherd Clinic on occasion to bless patients by paying the nominal fee often regularly charged for their visits. In addition, the Class provides lunch for the staff and offers a gift bag containing toiletries, candy, and a Gideon New Testament among other items to patients who’d like to take one home.

This year, the project looked a little different, largely due to the concerns surrounding the COVID-19 Crisis. In addition to the lunch for staff, gift bags were given to the Clinic to distribute and fees were paid in advance to Mountain Hope to make the process as efficient and touch-free as possible.  Patients were informed at the time of service that their fees had been covered.

Janice Bettis represented the Class on Tuesday as they sought to bless members of the Sevier County community, “The class was scheduled to be at the clinic on April 7th and when the ‘stay at home’ order came into effect; we quickly realized that we would not be able to do this.  Class members receive such a blessing from being able to give the money and gift bags to the patients as they check out.  We are aware that the people we have been able to serve at the Clinic are some of the hardest hit because businesses are closed and they have not been able to work and subsequently pay their bills.  We contacted Deb Murph to ask if we could bring the money and the items to the Clinic for her staff to distribute for us.  She graciously agreed.  We pray that this small gesture will be an encouragement and hope to these people.  Thank you Mountain Hope for allowing us to be a part of what you do,” she said.

Mountain Hope is grateful for the support of community members like these. If you would like more information on volunteering for or donating to Mountain Hope Good Shepherd Clinic, please contact Ashley Burnette at or via cell at 865.771.9114.


Ole Smoky’s Jars & Jams Virtual Concert for Mountain Hope

Ole Smoky Distillery continues a longstanding tradition of great live entertainment with this week’s Jars & Jams Virtual Concert Series event to benefit Mountain Hope Good Shepherd Clinic, a medical and dental clinic serving the uninsured. We invite you to join us for family-friendly rock-alternative bluegrass music with Monroeville from the comfort of your home. The concert will take place Friday, April 24 at 8:00 p.m. EST on the Ole Smoky Distillery Facebook page.