Preparing for a Terminal Diagnosis

Terminal Diagnosis

Receiving the diagnosis of a life-limiting disease is one of the hardest things that anyone will go through, but it can be done with the proper amount of preparation. It leads to emotionally trying times that force an individual to become closer to their family, loved ones and friends.

There are things that can be done to help make this type of diagnosis easier.

The first thing that must be done when preparing to receive a diagnosis of a terminal illness is for an individual to involve those closest to him or her. This requires contacting them, bringing them to see the person, exchanging bygone memories and the like. This will significantly decrease the amount of stress that person feels while developing a support network.

The next step is to begin re-establishing ties with people whom may have been cut off for one reason or another. While these people may not be involved directly in making any decisions or providing advice, it can help to remove a feeling of “I wish I would have done this” from an individual’s mind.

The third thing that must be done is that the terminal illness in question must be discussed with the individual’s support group. Explaining it at length will aid everyone understand how long the individual has, what stages the illness will bring with it, and it will aid in forming future plans that may care for the individual’s needs later.

The fourth step revolves around establishing a financial aid system. While insurance and other vehicles created may pay for a majority of things involving taking care of a person with a terminal illness, they likely will not pay for everything. Things like groceries, rent and utilities may become nearly impossible to fund as an individual enters certain stages of a terminal disease. Friends and family members can help make these plans.

The last thing must be done continuously. It involves having the person with the terminal illness socialize with other individuals. This can include people in a group with similar diseases, or it can simply involve a friend who is willing to listen and reciprocate the individual’s feelings. This will force away feelings of loneliness, emptiness and other negative emotions.

While terminal illnesses have no cure, they generally have some sort of life expectancy attached to them. Realizing this, making preparations before receiving the diagnosis, and developing a strong support system will aid in making the right decisions for the person with the terminal illness.