There’s nothing more important than family. When someone close to you gets sick and needs in-home, around the clock care, it’s natural to want to be there for them. However, caring for a sick loved one is one of the most daunting tasks you can face in life. If you’re not a healthcare provider, you may feel overwhelmed by your newfound responsibility.
If it’s your first time being a caregiver for a sick loved one, you have a lot to learn, and you’ll have to learn much of it on the fly. Nonetheless, you want to eliminate trial and error as much as possible when you’re responsible for the well-being of someone you love. Continue reading to get some sound advice that will help you care for your sick friend or family member.
CPR and First Aid
Cardiopulmonary resuscitation, more commonly known as CPR, is one of the most essential medical techniques to learn. Chronic and terminal illnesses come with a vastly higher chance of medical emergencies, so learning CPR is one of the best things you can do for your confidence and your loved one’s safety.
CPR courses are inexpensive, and it doesn’t take much time to learn CPR and get your CPR certification. It isn’t a requirement to know CPR to be a caregiver for a family member, but it exponentially increases the chances you’ll be able to save their life in case of a medical emergency.
COVID-19 has affected the entire United States and limited our ability to move about, but you can take online CPR classes and get your CPR certification the same day. CPR Care offers CPR and first aid classes online, and upon completion, you’ll be a more competent health care provider.
When caring for a family member with a chronic, debilitating, or terminal illness, you become not only a caregiver but also a de facto guardian. You may not be a guardian in the legal sense, but there may come a time when you have to make critical decisions for them and help them to keep track of medications and doctor’s appointments.
As we endure this public health emergency, in-person visits to the doctor have been put on pause in many parts of the United States. That means it’s now even harder for patients to keep track of appointments and get medical advice about medications and treatments.
Fortunately, the use of telemedicine has become a popular option for patients. Nonetheless, it might be even harder for your loved one to keep track of telemedicine appointments than in-person visits.
Cancer patients are at higher risk for cardiac arrest and stroke than other patients. If you’re caring for a cancer patient, you have to take special care to ensure they make it to their cancer care telemedicine or in-person appointments. They can’t afford to miss checkups and treatments. It’s best to try to schedule their telemedicine appointments around your busy schedule so you can be there with them and for them.
People with serious illnesses tend to try to diminish their suffering, so you have to pay attention to their condition and symptoms. You must watch for and recognize signs that their condition is worsening because they might not tell you so themselves.
Illness is scary, and sometimes the treatment can be just as scary. There may be times that you’ll have to act as a patient advocate and speak up for them to let their doctor know exactly what’s going on with them. Also, your loved one is counting on you to make sure their doctors and specialists are providing them with the best care possible. You’re their voice and their rock.
The most important thing to learn about caring for a sick family member is patience. Illness is distressing for everyone, and there may be times when you may not be too fond of each other.
However, those are the times when it’s most important to operate in love and practice patience. Put yourself in their shoes, and try to understand their plight so you can find the grace to remain caring and compassionate, especially when it’s most difficult to.
Caring for a loved one who is ill would be difficult for anyone, but by looking into CPR training, practicing patient advocacy, and helping your loved one stay on top of test results and in touch with their care team, you’ll be on the right track.