Living With Terminal Illness

Living with a serious illness and caring for your loved one can cause physical and emotional stress.

Adjusting to the Diagnosis

It may take time to adjust to the diagnosis, but knowing your choices and options can help relieve anxiety for you and your family. Talking about your wishes and goals of care will help you provide a roadmap for making informed decisions about your plan of care.

Family members and friends may need to share caregiving responsibilities. If caregiving is a problem, speak to your hospice social worker for suggestions for help. Family dynamics may change — you may experience role reversals or other changes. It’s hard to make all of the adjustments on top of receiving the recent diagnosis as well.

Living with a serious illness and caring for your loved one can cause physical and emotional stress that may include anger, anxiety, denial, depression, and dissatisfaction with life. There may be some questioning: Why me? Why now?

Hospice care involves a team-oriented approach to expert medical care, pain management, and emotional and spiritual support according to the patient’s and family’s needs and wishes. At the center of hospice is the belief that each of us has the right to die as pain-free as possible, with no loss of dignity, and that our families will receive the necessary support to allow us to do so.

 

Advance Care Planning

One of the greatest gifts you can give your family is to provide guidance on the treatments you would — and would not — want to receive if you were unable to speak for yourself. This is called advance care planning.

Download the Oregon Advanced Directive.