When you face the imminent death of a sick loved one, you may feel overwhelmed, stressed out, and depressed. Thoughts of funeral or cremation services enter your mind because you’re forced to face the harsh reality and make plans. Certainly, it is a unique and difficult situation that no one wants to be in. After all, no one wishes to see their loved one die before their eyes. Though most people understand that death is inevitable, the majority have never been in a position to care for a dying person. If you face this harrowing situation, know that it is okay and normal to feel a sense of despair.
However, you must also remember that although caring for a dying loved one is difficult; it is still a great opportunity that allows you to say goodbye. Sadly, most people don’t get this chance to have a final conversation or bid their loved one farewell. Instead of looking at this challenging crossroad with dread and trepidation, embrace it as a privilege to demonstrate your genuine care and concern for your terminally ill loved one. Don’t shy away from this opportunity to be of service. To help you out, here are some suggestions to help you bring comfort to a dying person.
Prepare a Tranquil Environment
Usually, a dying person becomes even more sensitive to loud noises and bright lights. The senses are enhanced in these final moments, so it is best to create a tranquil space that ensures there are no unpleasant stimuli. Here’s what you can do:
- Be mindful of the noise level
Make sure you don’t disturb their rest with a noisy television, ringing phone, or loud conversations. Be mindful of what’s coming from outside the window. You don’t want any jarring noises that can cause pain or discomfort.
- Dim the lights
Turn off bright overhead lights and use smaller lamps to create a warmer ambiance instead. Softer illumination works better in creating a peaceful environment. Make sure that no light shines directly on the patient.
- Play calming music
It would help to play peaceful music as this calms the spirit. Many dying people respond well to soft background music, such as those instrumental melodies in popular funeral songs. This can help ease anxiety and enhance relaxation for everyone in the room. You can also play the person’s favorite songs as this evokes happy emotions and memories.
- Rely on aromatherapy
Finally, use aromatherapy with lavender essential oil that’s known for helping people calm down. This scent is great for both the patient and caregivers as studies show that it reduces anxiety and helps promote good sleep. Lavender is also a well-known anti-microbial and anti-fungal so that it can diffuse bad elements in the room.
Show Solid Support With Your Presence
Someone who is terminally ill generally looks and feels weak. Though they may be quiet or appear sleeping, their minds are actually active. They may be thinking about any unfinished task they want you to do. Moreover, they process and analyze how to let go of their attachments in this ephemeral world. The best thing you can do during this period is to sit next to the person. Lend a listening ear and hold their hand. Your silent support and comforting touches exhibit your genuine love and care. If you and your dying loved one use prayer or meditation, now is the perfect time to practice this together.
Speak in Soothing Tones and Utilize Kind Words
When you speak to a dying loved one, remember to use a soothing tone. Speak softly and use gentle words. It would help to go near the person for better clarity. Remember, hearing is one of the last senses to go, so keep speaking to your dying loved one. Now is your chance to express your feelings. That being said, hold back on resentments and negativity. Instead, focus on saying thank you and I love you. Remind the person of his or her amazing life and influence on you. Assure your dying loved that it is okay to let go because you are both ready. You will take care of whatever concerns are left, so there is nothing to worry about.
Use Warm, Loving, and Gentle Touches
Above all else, don’t forget to use gentle touches. Hold your loved one’s hands or caress the arms as it feels soothing. Don’t forget to wet the lips with water. Use a sponge stick to moisten the mouth as the human body dehydrates when the person is dying. These little gestures can make a whole world of difference in your loved one’s level of comfort.
Final Wrap Up
Remember, in the last few days of life, your loving presence has the most profound impact. Don’t shy away or turn your back in these last precious moments. You will not regret performing this act of love and service as a dying loved one leaves the physical realm behind. As your days go on past the memorial services, you will treasure the loving memories you create in these final days. And, honestly, you will feel grateful that you got the chance to spend more time and say goodbye to your loved one.