When one of your loved ones is diagnosed with a terminal illness, there are so many things that go through your mind: fear, sadness, anxiety, grief, stress, and disbelief are just a few. You may be wondering how best to help them stay comfortable or how they’ll pay for long-term care should they become unable to care for themselves. It can be extremely overwhelming to try to care immediately. There
are lots of things to consider, from how to protect their finances to how to help them with daily activities, and it’s a lot to think about.
Fortunately, there are many things you can do to help your loved one stay comfortable and safe during this time, especially if they will be spending time in the hospital. Start by making a list of all the things that need to be done, and talk to them about what kind of assistance they need in their day-to-day. There may be household chores that they are no longer able to complete, or it might help immensely to have a comfortable place to rest. Think about the details.
Keep reading for some great tips on how to help your loved one after a terminal diagnosis.
Create a soothing place for rest
Your loved one needs a safe, comfortable place to rest in that will help them feel relaxed, and there are a few easy ways to do this. By keeping books, puzzles, and other hobbies nearby, you can help them stay entertained and pass the time. It’s also important that there are photos and favorite pieces of art nearby so your loved one will feel that there’s a sense of normalcy. If they have pets, having them close for as long as possible will give them some comfort as well.
Talk to their doctor
Talk to your loved one’s doctor to find out how you can help them stay comfortable. With every illness, there are different treatments and methods that will help, so it’s important to find the ones that work for your loved one’s specific needs. Ask as well about what not to do; for instance, certain plants can aggravate the symptoms of someone who is living with cancer. Knowing how to keep your loved one as comfortable as possible while also keeping their safety in mind is key.
Look into final expense insurance
Final expense insurance can be hugely beneficial in several different ways, from allowing you to pay for medical bills and other debts after your loved one passes on to covering the cost of the funeral and other final arrangements. Talk to them about acquiring final expense insurance to help ensure that all the costs are taken care of.
Do some research
It’s important to do a little research on how to help your loved one–and yourself–with protecting mental health. The stress of living with a terminal illness can be devastating for both of you, and it can have far-reaching consequences for many years. Allowing them to grieve and go through their own process is imperative, and it’s also a good idea for you to look into finding a counselor or therapist to talk to about your feelings, especially if you’re taking care of your loved one.
Helping someone you love after they have received a terminal diagnosis can be tricky as well as stressful, and you can hardly take care of someone else if you yourself are feeling symptoms of depression or anxiety. Don’t forget to take your own needs into consideration so that you can face anything that comes your way.
Lindsey is the author of A Life Well-Balanced, a lifestyle blog dedicated to helping people live a more balanced life – physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually.