If your loved one has a terminal illness, he or she may have opted for hospice care. This type of care aims to keep patients as comfortable as possible during their final days. If you plan to visit your family member in hospice in the near future, you may feel nervous and unsure of what to say.
Here are a few useful tips for visiting a loved one in hospice.
When your loved one is in hospice, it is not a good idea to show up out of the blue. You never know how your family member may be feeling on a particular day. It is a good idea to call at least a few hours ahead of time. Ask your loved one if it is okay for you to drop by for a visit.
Talk About Pleasant Memories
It can be difficult to know what to say to someone in hospice. If you are unsure of what to say to your loved one, consider talking about some good memories the two of you have shared. If you have photos of these memories, bring them along. This may put a smile on your loved one's face.
Stay Away If You Are Sick
People who are in hospice typically have weakened immune systems, so they can get sick very easily. As such, if you come down with the flu or other illness, you should postpone your visit with your loved one.
Avoid Bringing Others
The last thing you want to do is overwhelm someone in hospice. If you bring other people to your visit, you may do just that. Unless your loved one specifically requests for you to bring someone, you should go to your visit alone.
Do not Overstay Your Welcome
Hospice patients tend to get tired quite easily. Even though your loved one may be very happy to see you, he or she may not be able to visit for more than an hour or two. If your family member is yawning or showing other signs of being tired, it may be time to end the visit. Your loved one needs rest.
Visiting someone in hospice can be a little nerve-wracking in the beginning. However, if you follow these helpful tips, you can have a pleasant visit with your loved one. If you have additional questions, you should not hesitate to contact the hospice provider right away.