Long-Distance Caregiving Tips To Support Your Loved One With Cancer
Caring for someone with cancer from far away would be a challenging one. Due to personal responsibilities, it might be hard to live with your loved one who has cancer. It is common to think that your role is unessential, but you can offer significant support. Here are the long-distance caregiving tips you can follow to support. You can offer choices of how you would be of help to them instead of simply telling them to let me know if you need anything, as it can be hard for them to ask you or decide what you would be fit to help. Depending on how close or important your loved one is, you can do a lot on your part.
Long-Distance Caregiving Tips To Follow
Learn And Stay Organized
Learn about the cancer of your loved one and the treatment options available. Collect and plan out the financial, medical, and legal needs of the person with cancer. Make sure the important documents like advanced directives are completed to avoid confusion later.
Advanced directives are legal documents containing the patients’ decisions on what treatment options can be done when the patient is unable to make a decision due to sickness or who can take decisions on their behalf. Search all possible ways of managing the cost of cancer care and let the loved one know the best choices.
Keep In Touch With The Health Care Professionals And Nearby Caretakers
Introduce yourself to the health care professional and caretakers who live nearby to the person with cancer. Give your contact information to them so that they can call you when needed. To understand the diagnosis and treatment options, you can ask the person to record the doctor visits. For talking with a healthcare professional, they might ask for confirmation from your loved one. Keeping in touch with the people who are caring for your loved one is a crucial part of long-distance caregiving.
Recruit Professional Services
Sometimes, the nearby caretaker cannot temporarily take care of the person with cancer as he/ she is ill or has any important personal duties. In that case, you can ask a healthcare professional or social health worker to refer to a professional caretaker. A home care professional services can range from basic medical needs to other personal needs such as meal preparation. Most of these needs cannot be offered remotely, and arranging professional services can greatly help the nearby caretakers.
Provide Emotional Support: Every Little Thing Counts
Regular communication is the best way to offer emotional support. It gives them the feeling that they are not alone. Through calls, video calls, or tests, ask them how the treatment goes and how they feel. If your loved one has younger children, you can assist them with their study projects through video calls. Ask the nearby caretakers, such as neighbors, friends or family members if you can help them in any way and how they feel.
Prepare For The Unexpected Travel
You may be needed to travel suddenly in case of any emergency requirements, such as staying in hospital or replacing a family member role. Save vacation and sick leaves and separate funds for this. Ask your friend or neighbor in advance to take care of your home when you are leaving. Be aware of the flight, train or bus timings and costs to travel on short notice.
While You Visit: Have A Plan
While you visit a person with cancer, plan what you are going to do. List out all the doubts you have regarding the treatment and care, so you don’t miss out when visiting the health care professional. Plan to share some works of the nearby caretakers while you visit. It can provide relief for them, and you can also figure out what things require changes. Talk with all persons involved in taking care of your loved one and ask for their suggestions and concerns. If your loved one has advanced cancer, discuss their life wishes with the family.
Your Role Is Important: Care For Yourself
With long-distance caregiving, many people have feelings of guilt about what they cannot do. The advice or suggestions given by them are sometimes not well received by in-person caretakers. This can also end up in frustration or stress. Focus on what support you are offering instead of what you cannot. It’s common to feel stressed or depressed when you are taking care of a person with cancer, even from far away. Talk with a family member or friend you trust about how you feel and cope with stress in healthy ways.