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What is Palliative Care, and How Does It Affect You?

What is Palliative Care, and How Does It Affect You?

Palliative care is a term used to describe the health care for a patient who has been diagnosed with a serious illness such as cancer. The World Health Organization offers the following definition:

Palliative care is an approach that improves the quality of life of patients and their families facing the problem associated with life-threatening illness, through the prevention and relief of suffering by means of early identification and impeccable assessment and treatment of pain and other problems, physical, psycho-social and spiritual.

When you are facing a life-threatening illness, addressing both the tangled knot of feelings that you just can’t seem to sort out and palliative care services can be overwhelming. Each person going through the stages of grief (denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance) has a unique perspective. The goal is to make the patient as comfortable as possible whilst they are undergoing treatments that can cause mild to severe side-effects, manage pain, and maintain a good quality of life throughout these stages.


The reality of dealing with a serious illness and death

Finding out that you have an illness that can end your life is one of those moments that changes you, and it can also alter the way you perceive everything and everyone. Positive thinking is a key factor in making the most of each day, and you hold that power.

In some cases, patients have very little time to truly understand and accept what’s happening to them. In other situations, the patient must deal with difficulty over a long period of time. No matter what your situation is, it’s important to take advantage of your personal support system, and all of the health care services offered by your local medical professionals. This can help manage stress and alleviate depression, and contributes to a healthier outlook on life.

Advancements in modern medicine have made facing illness a more hopeful experience.  It’s worth noting that receiving palliative care can improve your quality of life and make each day count as one you’ll treasure.

Talk it out

If you have experienced loss, whether tragic and unexpected, or the death of a loved one after a long, drawn-out period of treatment, you may already know that the effects of this trauma can manifest themselves physically and mentally.

Getting outside of your own head is often the simplest way we can cope with difficult situations. Some things you can do to alleviate your stress and sort out your thoughts:

  • Confide in someone you trust
  • Write down any questions or fears that pop into your head; you may want to bring them up later
  • Visit a mental health professional; sometimes a neutral listener is exactly what we need
  • Make time for your spiritual needs
  • Join a support group in your area to share your story and listen to others who are going through similar stages of grief

How can Retire-At-Home Services Halton help?

We understand that it’s not easy to allow a stranger into your home, much more so during a difficult time such as dealing with a potentially terminal illness. We want you to know that our team at Retire-At-Home Services Halton pays attention to the details, whether you’re in your own home or at a retirement residence.

Our commitment to you and your family is a priority, and we will do everything we can to make your quality of life better. We’ll take the time to get to know you, and match you with a caregiver whose personality compliments yours. We also work with your medical team to ensure continuous health care for your individual needs.

  • In-home care (service areas: Oakville, Burlington, Georgetown, Milton, Mississauga North, Halton)
  • Regular monitoring of your health to ensure proper care
  • Pain relief
  • Dignified nursing services
  • Positive attitude toward the cycle of life
  • Companionship
  • Grief counselling
  • Enhancing your quality of life, and that of your family and friends
  • Nurses that are available 24/7 for immediate concerns

Contact Retire-At-Home Services Halton for a complimentary in-home consultation at 1-888-509-9394 or 905-864-9020.  You can also use our online contact form.



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