Most people immediately associate the term "hospice" with comfort, and rightly so. This physical comfort is easy to picture -- nurses and physicians at a patient's bedside, operating medical equipment and providing any drugs the patient may need in order to be as comfortable as possible. Yet this is but one aspect of holistic hospice care; hospice teams provide crucial mental health services as well, both to the patient and their family.
Care for mental illnesses
It is a fact of life that as we age, we become more susceptible to mental health disorders. Mental illness affects around 15% of adults over age 60 -- often, friends and family of the afflicted need help to provide proper care. Fortunately, holistic hospice care includes not just medical professionals but social workers, counselors, psychologists, and psychiatrists who can help individuals with common conditions that develop late in life, such as Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia. These disorders can have an impact on quality of life that is equal to, or even greater than, severe pain. Hospice caretakers are trained in helping those who are struggling with a mental illness.
Coming to terms with our own finite nature is possibly the greatest challenge that humans can face. The soothing environment provided by holistic care hospices makes it easier for patients to work through these unimaginably difficult quandaries. Trained counselors and staff are accustomed to supporting people who must embark on a complex and challenging emotional journey. They will help guide not only the patient but the patient's family to conceptualize their situation in a healthy, adaptive way.
People often find religion particularly fruitful during life's most challenging moments. Visits by clergy are not at all uncommon in hospice care -- if a patient no longer has any mobility, they can still seek the comfort of prayer and conversation with spiritual leaders should they so choose.
If you or a loved one is in need of holistic hospice care, choose "The Soulistic Way" with Soulistic Hospice, a nonprofit service providing soulful, compassionate care.