Providing Physical Comfort
Ask the person you're caring for if they're comfortable.
- It is very important for you to ask the person you are caring for if they are comfortable. You need to know if they are experiencing physical pain, breathing problems, confusion or other symptoms so that you can work to ease the distress.
- By talking with the person’s physician and other healthcare providers, pain medication and other therapies can be provided to achieve a level of comfort.
If they are experiencing pain:
- Ask them to describe the pain rate on a scale of 0-10.
- Write down everything they say and review this before you call the physician and health care provider.
- If you have specific questions, write them down too.
- As you talk with the physician or health care provider, write down the answers you receive so that you can refer to the information later.
Providing Emotional Comfort
Talk to them
- In addition to physical pain, your family member or friend may experience emotional and spiritual pain. They are experiencing many losses including the loss of control over their own life. It is important for you to continue to explain to them what is happening with your family member or friend's care, condition, and any other changes, so that they can feel more empowered.
Share your feelings with each other.
- Take some time each day to talk to your family member or friend about their feelings and to share your feelings with them.
- Be patient and listen to what they want to share with you.
- Whatever feelings they have - let them know that they have a right to feel that way; do not try and talk them out of their feelings.
- If your family member or friend wishes to discuss their fears, concerns or distress with someone else, encourage them to do so.