Mesothelioma is a severe disease caused by prolonged asbestos exposure, mainly at the workplace. Firefighters, farmers, construction workers, veterans, industrial workers, HVAC professionals, miners, and hairdressers are at high risk. The airborne asbestos fibers cling to the lining of the lungs when inhaled and subsequently form tumors. The worst part is that these tumors may go undetected for decades after asbestos exposure. Not surprisingly, mesothelioma is common among the elderly. An unexpected cancer diagnosis can be devastating for a senior patient and their family. But you can do your bit as a caregiver to make your loved one as comfortable as possible. Here is the best advice to look after seniors suffering from mesothelioma.
Help with daily chores
Aging has dire implications, and a condition like mesothelioma can worsen them. You can help your elderly relative with daily chores such as dressing, cooking, feeding, and exercising. You may also organize their appointments, maintain medical records, and communicate with healthcare providers. Ensuring good care for the patient can help them achieve well-being despite medical challenges.
Provide emotional support
Besides providing physical care, you can go the extra mile by offering emotional support to your loved one. The diagnosis itself is daunting, and symptoms like pain, breathing issues, and seizures can make life even more challenging for the patient. They can take a toll on the emotional well-being of the senior. You can support them by talking to them, listening to their concerns, and encouraging them. Arrange for counseling therapy if the patient seems depressed or anxious.
Money often becomes a concern for patients because treatment can be expensive whether you manage it yourself or hire a professional. Thankfully, you can claim compensation from liable companies, employers, insurance, or trust funds to cover these expenses and ensure good care for the patient. Injury or death due to Mesothelioma? Contact a personal injury lawyer today to get your relative the compensation they deserve. You can even seek justice as a surviving family member for the wrongful death of your loved one.
Understand severe symptoms
Mesothelioma is a severe disease that worsens over time. As a caregiver, you must understand the symptoms indicating that the patient is reaching the end-of-life stage. These include difficulty eating and drinking, dry mouth, extreme fatigue, drifting in and out of consciousness, slow breathing, weakness, weight loss, and less frequent urination. Your loved one may lose interest in activities, hobbies, and socialization. Watch out for these signs, and seek medical advice to help the patient as much as possible.
Invest in self-care
Looking after a senior with mesothelioma is taxing, and it can affect your physical and mental well-being. You must invest in self-care to deal with the workload and traumatic feelings of losing a loved one. Seek the support of your partner, siblings, and friends to help with the caregiver’s responsibilities. Look after your diet, exercise regularly, and meditate daily. Also, take a break from your duties occasionally.
Caring for a senior suffering from mesothelioma is challenging. Your loved one needs physical and emotional support as they approach the end of life. Commit to doing your best to make them comfortable while looking after your own needs.