"You're going to have to seek hospice care" are words no family or patient wants to hear when dealing with a debilitating illness. In 2012 it was reported that 1.65 million Americans received care from hospice and 44.6% of all deaths were under the care of a hospice program. Those alarming numbers have inflicted fear in many Americans.
Traditionally, hospice has been known as a place of care for those who have been told that they will soon die. While hospice may help in aiding a patient until they transition into eternity, it should never be viewed as something negative.
In fact, considering hospice for yourself or your loved one will not make you die sooner but it can help provide the support and assistance you never knew you needed as either a patient or a caretaker.
As a society we generally focus on the negative impacts of hospice care but there are some really good and little known benefits of hospice care. In fact, a local hospice in Cleveland suggests that hospice could benefit your family in several ways during potentially one of the worst crisis your family may ever face:
Support for the Caretaker
Being a caretaker can become an emotionally and physically depleting journey. Many caretakers often neglect self-care because they assume the role of taking care someone else as more of a priority than taking care of themselves. Hospice care can give caretakers a much needed break without the caretaker feeling as if they are neglecting their loved one or patient.
When discussing death with a patient and their family there will be many questions. Some of these questions could be why would God let this happen or even what will I do when I die. While you may not personally have all these answers the spiritual counselors provided by hospice care could lead you down a path of spiritual enlightenment and understanding.
One on One Counseling
If you as a care taker are feeling overwhelmed, hospice can provide counseling to you as you work through the typical emotional needs of a caretaker. On the flip side, if you are a patient you probably have emotions that can range from sadness to anger to happiness. All these emotions are quite normal and a counselor could assist you in getting those emotions in check.
It is a common misconception that once you go to hospice you will not get the care you need. That is not true. Hospice care makes sure that you continue to see your nurse and physician providers on a regular basis. In between visits they also help make sure you are taking the necessary medications and treatments in conjunction with other pain management procedures.
Has your loved one been placed in hospice before? What benefits did your family gain from the experience?