As we care for sick and elderly loved ones, the thought of them nearing the end is enough to still the heart. For those struggling with a life-threatening illness that is not responding to any treatment, palliative care becomes the most logical option. Many often assume that palliative care equals being on one’s “deathbed.” However, palliative care entails so much more. It prepares the patient physically, mentally and spiritually for the end of their life by allowing them to live it to its fullest.
Does palliative care make death come faster?
A patient that goes into palliative care is not necessarily going to die within the next week or even month. Many patients in a hospice, senior medical center or the comfort of their own home can receive palliative care for days, months and even years. Typically offered to patients with terminal illnesses with less than six months to live, palliative care allows them to take control of the life they have left and die with dignity. During this time the patient as well as their family and caregivers can receive the spiritual support they need to come to terms with the situation at hand.
Can palliative care only be received in a hospital setting?
For patients seeking palliative care, the thought of dying in a hospital isn’t very comfortable. Palliative care can be provided in any setting that the patient chooses, including a hospital, their home or a hospice center. The most important thing is ensuring the patient is comfortable and is having his/her wishes fulfilled. Providing comfort while administering medication to the patient if desired is also important. The Respironics SideStream Nebulizer achieves maximum aerosol quality and respirable output for administering most commonly prescribed medications.
Should I feel guilty about placing a terminally ill loved one into palliative care?
Absolutely not. Many caregivers and families choose palliative care as a joint decision with the patient so that their last months of life can be surrounded by love and great memories. Often at times, a terminally ill patient decides to stop their chemotherapy, medication and other treatments since they are not helping to be in less pain and enjoy the time they have left.
Placing an ill loved one who is unable to make the decision themselves into palliative care is not a selfish decision. Rather, palliative care allows your loved one to be as comfortable as possible and come to terms with the end of their life respectfully. For additional comfort, patients can use Drive Medical’s 4-Position Clinical Care Recliner Chair. This chair has a padded recliner so patients can relax.
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