Language Communication ProcessMexican Americans may speak Spanish or English in the home environment, or a combination thereof, depending on who they are speaking to. For instance, older adults may speak Spanish regularly, along with many parents, while younger adults may speak English as their primary language and may know little Spanish or only use it sparingly. When speaking to outsiders, Spanish may be preferred for those who are uncomfortable with English, while those who are fluent in English will likely speak this language on a regular basis. Second and third generation people in the United States do not frequently speak their native language and have a tendency to speak English throughout their lives, as they were raised with this language and are most comfortable with it.
Health Belief and Practices
Generally, Mexican Americans believe in different home remedies before making the decision to visit a doctor, many of which are passed down from mothers to their daughters (Smith, 2003). When outside guidance is required, mothers tend to take charge of health-related matters and explain to others within the family unit when additional care and treatment is necessary (Smith, 2003). Food may be used as a means of curing illness, including the use of beans, tropical fruits, dairy products, aromatic beverages, and meats to promote healing (Smith, 2003). Furthermore, black bile, blood, phlegm, and yellow bile are necessary to achieve a greater healthy balance (Smith, 2003). It may be difficult for some Mexican Americans to obtain the necessary care and treatment outside of the home due to limited access to care and language barriers; however, it is important for patients to seek treatment as necessary and to ensure that their needs are expressed and heard by the healthcare team in an equal fashion that does not prevent care and treatment from taking place (Medina).
- Medina, C. Belief and traditions that impact the Latino healthcare. Retrieved from https://www.medschool.lsuhsc.edu/physiology/
- Smith, A.B. (2003). Mexican cultural profile. Retrieved from https://ethnomed.org/culture/hispanic-latino/mexican-cultural-profile