Diagnosis of a terminal illness brings about a lot of changes in our lives and priorities. There are new challenges to fight and concerns to address. Overall, it can be heartbreaking to know about your or your loved one’s terminal illness. You may feel lost with no idea what to do or how to manage the situation. Worry not, as a few things can help make the blow somewhat softer.

Below, we have listed four things to do when you or a loved one receives a terminal diagnosis.

  1. Empower yourself through knowledge: We tend to fear the unknown; it’s a common theme among humans. Therefore, empowering yourself by learning about the illness and its effects on you and your family will help you get a leg up on the diagnosis. Ask your healthcare provider for more information about the illness and how it will affect you in the coming days, weeks, or months. Please note these changes can be physical, mental, and emotional.

    You can also educate yourself about your illness through resources available online or at a local library. Ideally, you should also learn about end-of-life symptoms to treat them and improve the quality of your life for the remaining time.

  2. Forgive yourself in advance: Accept that there is no right way to deal with a terminal illness. Over time, you are bound to experience various emotions, from anger to fear and depression. However, your reaction to these feelings and how you manage them will be unique. Some days you might do better, while other days may take a toll on you and your loved ones. Therefore, forgive yourself in advance for those times.

  3. Set your priorities: No one knows you better than you; set your priorities for the time you have left. For instance, you may want to undergo all the treatment options to extend your lifespan. Or you may want to enhance the quality of your remaining time and spend it with your friends and family. Or you may want to do both.

    Make an informed decision about how you wish to spend the rest of your life. It can help avoid feelings of fear and helplessness.

  4. Plan for a good death: Plan for a good death where you decide to die comfortably on your terms at your choice of place. While the nature of your illness and treatment methods will influence these choices, various options are available, including hospice centers in Michigan offering greater care.

    Once you have made a decision, discuss it with your healthcare provider and loved ones to ensure it is the correct option for you.

About Cardinal Hospice

Now that you know what to do when you or a loved one receives a terminal diagnosis, it is time to look for a hospice facility that offers great care to increase the quality of life for your remaining life. At Cardinal Hospice, we provide the best possible care to patients and their families experiencing life-limiting conditions. We believe the end of life deserves as much recognition as the beginning. Our clients choose us for our highest quality end-of-life care to patients experiencing a life-limiting condition. For more information, call on (989) 318-5583 or (248) 329-0483, write to [email protected], or fill out the patient referral form.