Find out their level of education so that you can put it in a way they could understand. Find out if they have children/grandchildren that gives them joy and make them want to stay in good health to be around them longer.
Taking time to find out what they did for a living and then explaining the educational material geared in that direction help with scaffolding understanding and longer term retention of the info. Examples include heart disease or HTN related to a plumber working with pipes. Or a conveyer belt when discussing diabetes.
Always exercise patience and listen to your Geriatric patients. Attending to minor details and simple requests go a long way. I recall one of my patients needed to have Muscle Rub on her feet (not a typical spot for muscle rub) but it made her feel better. At times I was very busy when she would come to the Nurses’ Station to ask me to put the ointment on. She passed away not long ago after an unexpected CVA incident and in retrospect, those seemingly simple not so convenient muscle rub treatments, now seem a big deal. In short , attend to their every need, no matter how small.