Four Small Things You Can Do to Comfort Your Senior at the End of Life

Providing comfort at the end of your senior’s life may feel like all that you can really do for her. That’s also easier to do than you might believe.

Remember She Likely Can Still Hear You

It’s difficult to remember, but your senior most likely can still hear you even if she’s not responding to you the same ways that she used to. Hearing your voice and knowing that you’re there with her can be incredibly comforting for her, even if she’s not able to share that with you in the ways that you’re accustomed to experiencing. Remember what your senior has enjoyed in the past, whether that’s hearing you tell her about your day or simply sitting with you quietly, and keep doing that.

Focus on Helping Her to Breathe Easily

Your elderly family member may find breathing to be more difficult near the end of her life, especially if she already has difficulties with her breathing. Helping her to adjust her position from one that is more reclined to one where she’s sitting up more can help. It can also help for her to lie on her side, which might be easier with soft blankets or pillows helping her to stay in position. If she’s unable to move on her own, you may need to help her to shift positions frequently throughout the day to relieve pressure on her skin and joints.

Light Blankets and Throws Help with Temperature Regulation

Aside from breathing easier, your senior also might need help regulating her body temperature. Changes to her metabolism and to her body composition can mean that she’s cooler than usual sometimes and possibly warmer than usual at other times. Having several light throws and blankets allows you and her to move and to adjust those coverings as your senior needs to help her to stay at as comfortable a temperature as possible.

Help Her to Orient Herself Whenever Necessary

Something else to remember is that this period of your senior’s life can be very hazy and disorienting for her. She may have a difficult time keeping up with the time of day or even what day it is. This can happen because her sleep schedule may be dramatically different than usual or she may be experiencing cognitive changes. This is why hospitals tend to use a whiteboard with information like the current day that’s visible from the patient’s bed. Putting a calendar or a clock in your senior’s field of vision can help her to quickly see what time of day it is.

These solutions may be exactly what your senior needs, or she may need comfort in other ways. Hospice care providers can help you to determine what is helping your senior the most and what else she might need.

IF YOU ARE CONSIDERING HOSPICE CARE IN SACRAMENTO, CA, FOR AN AGING LOVED ONE, PLEASE CONTACT THE CARING STAFF AT PIC COMFORT CARE TODAY. CALL (530) 885-9948.

Shaun Clinkinbeard
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