One of the toughest things a person can go through in life is watching a loved one go through the final days of their life, especially if that person is battling a long term illness.
When a loved one and their family reaches that point, thankfully there are many hospice services and hospice organizations that can help families through this difficult time. In fact, the number of hospice patients grew from 513,000 in 2000 to about 1.4 million in 2015.
Choosing hospice care can be tough, but there are many benefits it can offer your loved one and your family:
- Options: You and your loved one have options concerning hospice care. Whether you chose outpatient care, which treats a patient at home or inpatient care, where a loved one is treated at a hospice facility, you have options depending on what works best.
- Respecting wishes: Hospice care also allows a loved one to spend their finals days in peace and quiet at home and with some privacy if they don’t want to spend it in a hospital.
- Routine: Whether your loved one stays in hospice care facilities or is treated at home, the care they receive offers a chance for routine and comfort. This is very beneficial, especially if someone is having a hard time excepting they are in their final days.
- Personalized care: Hospice workers can help patients feel as comfortable as possible, doing everything from offering pain meds to giving them some of their favorite foods to even just lending a sympathetic ear. Hospice care team members are on call 24 hours a day and 7 days a week, meaning they are able to provide care when and where it’s needed.
- Help for families: Having a loved one enter hospice care can be a very tough thing for families. It’s a tough enough choice to accept that a loved one needs hospice care let alone making the choice to put a loved one in hospice care. When these things happen, families can go through a lot of emotions and that’s where hospice workers can be very helpful. These workers can answer tough questions, help families through the grieving process and even offer bereavement and grief counseling when a loved one dies.
While a lot of hospice care treats symptoms with clinical therapy or medication, there is a lot of benefit to using holistic hospice therapy as well. These holistic hospice therapies help enhance a patient’s quality of life and as well as enhancing patient-centered care.
Some hospice services use Reiki therapy for patients. This holistic hospice therapy works with the idea that life has an energy field (aura) that flows around it and through it. To that end, the therapy helps improve energy flow by helping to create a peaceful and safe feelings.
At its core, Reiki therapy promotes:
- Pain management
- Positive emotional closure
- The release of fear, grief and anxiety
Another holistic hospice therapy is aromatherapy, which can bring about physiological changes in blood flow, muscle tension and blood pressure through different smells. This therapy involves using essential oils to stimulate the brain’s limbic system and the inhalation of these oils can have many positive effects including:
- Reduction of stress and anxiety
- Control for nausea and pain
- Helping to create a calm, peaceful atmosphere
It should also be noted that essential oils also be blended into creams and lotions and then applied to different parts of the body, which can help alleviate soreness, ease muscle stiffness and reducing swelling.
A third form of holistic hospice therapy is acupuncture, which uses thin needles placed at strategic points along pathways of energy in a person’s body. These needs stimulate the release of endorphins, which naturally help the body modify its perception of pain. In fact, acupuncture can:
- Relieve depression
- Relieve stress and anxiety
- Reducing fatigue as well as vomiting and nausea
- Reducing pain
With hospice care service, your family can feel more comfortable about your loved one’s last days because they’ll be taken care of by professionals. Your loved one has many treatment options and can have their final wishes respective by folks who give them the gentle care they need in their final days.