Although we always make sure the physical needs are always met the emotional and spiritual needs are just as important. A tip from from Part II Support Systems a daily check in by phone or visit once a day can be helpful to a person who is home bound and doesn't have a chance to interact with anyone all day. I have noticed with my elderly single family members that having a visit or phone call to look forward too can be very positive to their emotional health.
Tip #1) Daily Check ins or visits
My 90 year old aunt who lives alone makes us a meal once a week. She enjoys delivering it not just to see us but to see my 1 year old son. She has been able to see him grow up these past 15 months and it has been a great joy to her. Although she is not sick I do believe this has been very helpful to her.
When visiting my dad in the Rehab Facility after his knee operation I would bring my little son. Not only did it brighten his day but also everyone Else's.
Tip #2) Furry Friends: They say pets can be extremely healing for a person. Although some pets may be difficult to care for someone with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, or someone who is bed bound still pets like cats take little maintenance and can be very healing. I know when I don't feel good and my cat comes and kneads and lays on my belly I just feel better.
Tip # 6) Set Boundaries. Have the primary care giver give clear explanations and boundaries. What you can do or not do, when you sleep, what you need, how to speak positively over you. This helps everyone and is soooo good for your Emotional Well Being.
An example of a conversation might be, “ Aunt Dorothy Mary really isn't suppose to be going up and down the stairs, but she is hard headed and is embarrassed about asking for help. When you come over can you make sure to check in with her and bring her water and ask her if there is anything else she needs. “
Tip #7 ) Social media (Facebook) the good and the bad:
I found Facebook to be a saving grace after the birth of my son. With my mind half gone and my body not cooperating Facebook allowed for a distraction from my woes. I didn't get on and complain or visit support groups I just tuned out. Support groups can be helpful but I will warn you especially my recovering Fribromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue clients, “DO NOT SPEND MORE THAN 10 minutes a day on those types of Support Groups” . Why? Frankly because those people are not you and on those sites you will hear 90% depressing messages about the disease and very little about the recovery. It can very easily turn a switch on in your brain that says maybe I am not getting better. So to avoid that limit your time.
Tip #8) Entertainment
Entertainment is important for both the disabled individual, the family and caregivers. If you can not turn off for a little while everyday it can lead to burn out and further health crisis. I encourage people to pick something they really look forward to. Maybe it is a favorite Soap Opera, CSI, or Star Trek re-runs those can all be beneficial as long as they are used as a once a day one or two hours of tune out. If you are going to watch movies pick a uplifting, funny comedy or something that will make you laugh. Don't forget reading, books on CD, inspirational sermons or uplifting music. My favorite was to listen to the nationally syndicated radio station K-Love .
Tip #9 ) Keep a routine.
In some serious illnesses unfortunately routines are needed for medications and daily medical procedures. In other cases like Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue you may be lucky to have enough energy to do the dishes everyday. I don't mean you have to stick to a strict schedule but keep a routine with your approximate wake up, food, nutritional supplements, time with your children, spouse, entertainment, naps etc. This will help you with boundaries too. For example if the family knows 3-5pm is mommy's rest time then no one should be allowed in your room at that time.
Tip #10) Staying involved with your faith.
This was crucial in clients who are in the recovery stage. If you can not get to your church each week, see if a recording would be available for you. Make sure to utilize the healing ministries at your church or seek them out. Remember when we are the weakest He is the strongest. Having Faith in God can be quite comforting, as well as reading the Bible. It is full of stories of deliverance and healing.
Tip #11) Miracles still happen
Since 2007 I have personally witnessed over one dozen miraculous healings. Healings where the client had Fibromyalgia who was hospitalized monthly and in a day was delivered from her illness. I have sat in the hospital next to a friend who was literally at death's door and miraculously is healthy and healed today. I have seen heart conditions healed. I have witnessed a woman in debilitating pain, on 5 different pain medications and in a wheelchair throw their wheelchair away and get off all pain medications. I have seen Stage 4 Bladder Cancer healed.
God healed all these people, miraculously. I am a skeptic and very scientific and had I not witnessed them myself may not believe. But I will tell you all these people had an amazing faith and believed that God would heal them….. and He did.
So if there is one thing I can tell you in all my years of working with those who are sick is this…. Believe with all your heart that you can get better and you can be healed and then let go and see what doors God opens for you. For some those doors will be miraculous healing for others they will be resources and ways to recover.
I believe you can recover and have Total Wellness. Do you?
Dr. Mary Starr Carter
Dr. Mary Starr Carter has worked with thousands of clients from terminally ill and chronic diseases to those who are healthy and want vibrant health. She has counseled hundreds of families who had given up hope find simple safe solutions. Known as the Total Wellness Doc she looks at all aspects of health to help someone overcome disease. She specializes in difficult cases like Fibromyalgia, Hormone and Adrenal issues, Asthma, Diabetes and Chronic pain.
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