Taking Care of Your Folks During Their Golden Years

3 Signs That Your Loved One Could Benefit From Hospice Care

Are you caring for a terminally ill loved one? If so, then you may face a point where you and your loved one make the difficult decision that treatment is no longer effective. At that point, your priority may be to just make your loved one comfortable rather than beating the illness. If and when you reach that point, hospice care can be an effective solution. Hospice is an organization that can provide care either in your loved one's home, in the hospital, or in some other treatment facility. They maintain care so that your loved one may experience a comfortable and peaceful passing. It can be hard, though, to make the decision to start hospice care. Here are a few signs that it may be time to stop thinking about treatment and start thinking about hospice care:

Your loved one has decided to quit treatment. This is one of the biggest signs that a consultation with a hospice representative may be necessary. If your loved one has decided to stop treatments, then it may be time to shift your focus from finding a cure to keeping them comfortable. That's what hospice specializes in. In some cases, a person may still seem relatively functional and healthy when they stop treatment. Even then, hospice can be beneficial as the hospice representative can help you and your family manage expectations and plan for the road ahead. If your loved one stops treatment, a hospice representative can help you decide what steps to take next and how to maintain your loved one's comfort.

Setbacks have become more frequent. Often when someone is fighting cancer or some other terminal disease, a decline in health can come quickly and suddenly. You may not realize the end is near until it's happening. If your loved one is starting to spend more and more time at the hospital, then it could be possible that their body isn't responding as well to treatment.

Also, think about how they're reacting to rounds of chemo or other treatment. Is there any short-term improvement in condition? Or do they seem to be on a consistent downward trajectory? If they no longer seem to be making progress against the disease, then you may want to meet with a hospice representative, who can advise you on how hospice would bring your loved one peace in the time they have left.

You and your family are exhausted. If you or your family has been providing round-the-clock care to the loved one, chances are good that your energy is spent. You may have been ignoring your own personal obligations. You may have put work, friends, and other commitments on hold. You may even have some resentment about all of the work.

If these are your final few months with your loved one, you don't want to have negative feelings during that time. By using hospice care, you can get a break. Hospice will handle treatment and keeping your loved one comfortable. That will allow you to spend quality time with your loved one and cherish the time you have remaining.

There never is a bad time to call hospice. At the very least, they'll meet with you and your loved one and tell you whether now is the right time for hospice treatment. Contact your a hospice care service like Orchard Hill at Sudbury Assisted Living Community and schedule a consultation for more information.