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Dealing with the Fears Associated with Congestive Heart Failure in Your Elder Care Journey

April 14th, 2016

Elder Care in Palm Beach County FL

Elder Care in Palm Beach County FLHearing a diagnosis of congestive heart failure can be sobering. Any time that a medical condition involves your parent's heart it can be frightening, but this particular condition can make your parent feel especially vulnerable. Though it does not mean that your parent's heart has stopped suddenly or that it is going to stop suddenly in the near future, it is a serious and impactful diagnosis. With congestive heart failure your parent's heart becomes weakened and is no longer able to pump blood effectively through your parent's body. This can be relatively mild or can escalate to a far more serious situation. If your loved one has recently received a diagnosis of congestive heart failure, one of the most important steps in your elder care efforts that you can take is helping him deal with the fears that may come up.

It is normal for a senior who has recently received a serious medical diagnosis to experience a range of emotions, one of which may be fear. By helping your parent acknowledge these fears and work through them you can help him to better confront his condition, embrace the life that he now has, and life as healthy, safe, and comfortable a lifestyle as possible throughout his aging years.

Some of the fears that your elderly parent might have after his diagnosis with congestive heart failure include:
• Not being able to be active any longer. Some of the most common symptoms of congestive heart failure include fatigue, weakness, and shortness of breath especially during exertion. These can make it difficult for your parent to stay active, and may even make him think that he needs to stop all activity. The reality, however, is that he should still continue to enjoy as active a lifestyle as possible even after his diagnosis. This does not mean that he should push himself too hard or suddenly start doing physically strenuous activities. Instead, he should talk with his doctor about his limitations and participate in activities as much as he can handle.
• Facing mortality. It is a completely normal and common reaction for a person who has recently received a diagnosis of a heart condition to start thinking about his mortality. He might worry that he has not done enough in life, or start thinking about the future generations of the family and how they will not know him. This can be a very difficult and delicate situation to approach. Take the time to help him feel more at ease with his life. This might mean helping him to record final wishes or start creating a legacy to leave for the future generations. While you are doing this, however, it is essential that you also try to pull his mind away from these topics and support as good of mental and emotional health as possible. Reassure him that he still has plenty of life to live and that he can make it amazing.
• Not knowing when something is wrong. If not managed properly congestive heart failure can escalate quickly. Your parent might fear that he will not know when something is wrong. Consider easing this fear by hiring an elderly health care services provider who can get familiar with his health and his care guidelines. This care provider can be with your parent when you are not, easing his mind and helping him to feel less anxious.
If you or an aging loved one are considering elder care in Palm Beach County, FL, contact the caring staff at BrightStar Care of Jupiter. Call today (561) 741-1200.

Topics: Senior Care