When Your Family Gets Sick: Caregiving 101

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When your family gets sick, are you prepared? Do you know what to do to be a good caregiver? For most of us, there will come a time when we need to think about how we are going to take proper care of the people in our lives when they become sick or unwell, or when they suffer some tragic circumstance such as a car accident or disability. If we are taking care

Although it might feel like this is years off, you never know when it might happen, and it is something that we should all prepare for as fully as possible. As a first step, do you have a proper first aid kit stocked? Do you now what PPE stands for?

Ways to Be the Best Caregiver You Can

How exactly can you hope to look after those close to you, and what might be involved in ensuring that you do so as successfully as possible? Let’s take a look at that very question now.

Finding Proper Care

For one thing, you should bear in mind that there is probably some professional care that this person should be receiving. Especially if they have a specific medical problem which they need care for. You might want to help that person by looking into finding the right care for them and that might not be you. This can be a difficult task but is also going to be made easier if you know where to look.

Good healthcare like that promoted by Regis College is what you are looking for here, where the patient is really given the kind of scope and care that they actually need for their specific problem. If you can help them find that, then you will already have done a lot to improve things for them.

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Being With Them

Ways to Be the Best Caregiver You Can

One of the most important things you can do when your family gets sick, moreover, is to make a point of simply being with them when they are struggling. This can be especially important for those suffering with long-term illnesses and disabilities, as well as those who are perhaps closer to passing away altogether.

The more that you can just show up and be with them, the more likely it is that you are going to be able to enjoy their presence, and they yours, and you will probably find this helps to keep them much more involved in what is going on around them too. This really is one of the most important things that you can do if you want to do all you can for that person, so make sure you bear it in mind.

Pain Control

One of the invaluable things you can do when you are in the presence of someone suffering like this is to help with their pain control. In some cases, they might have a great deal of medication that needs sorting out and arranging, and that is something that you can put a lot of thought into if you want to make sure you are making things easier for them.

In this way, you will also be helping them to have a better time, and to feel more as though they can really handle what is going on, so it is clearly invaluable to ensure that you are doing this. If nothing else, they will be in less pain.

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Be Compassionate

If the family member you’re caring for is going through chemotherapy or other serious medical treatment, sometimes the best way to help is to just sit and talk with them during their treatment in order to help take their mind off the procedure. You can also take them out for their favorite food or a walk once they are feeling up to it.

For someone who has had a motor function injury such as a stroke, helping to support them when they get up from a chair will ease their fear of falling. Just these small gestures will mean a lot.

Show That you Care

Never be afraid to say something even if you don’t know what exactly you should say.  Show you care in any way that you can. You’ll know by their response if it is helping them, and it will. Social support is critical to building their confidence and helping them get through their treatment or cope with an ongoing illness. Do not say things like “let me know if I can do anything” or “call me if there is anything I can do.” When someone is sick, they usually will not ask for help. You need to take the initiative to provide concrete help.

Take Care of Yourself

Last but not least: when your family gets sick, don’t neglect YOU. If you get  rundown or unwell, you won’t be of any help to anyone. Set limits if you need to and make sure to do the things that keep you happy and healthy and take time for yourself to stay strong.

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