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Emotional Thursdays

Providing Emotional Support

Understanding a patient’s perspective and providing emotional support to people in crisis can be overwhelming. Not only do you handle matters of the health for your patients, but also their emotions. It can be uncomfortable, it can be weird, and even scary, and it can even be one of those situations you avoid at all costs. But as a medical professional, you must have the understanding of all stages after a loss or an announcement of a terrible disease.

Whenever you’re dealing with grief, understand and lend an ear to the patient so he would know that he can trust you with his feelings. Act as an advocate for them during this critical stage in their life.

It is critical to validate, use statements, keep calm and encourage your patient to talk things out. We're often taught several methods and ways to communicate, but these useful tips will surely upgrade your listening techniques!

  • As caregivers you must never feel that the anger is directed towards you; always remember to gain control of your feelings first and maintain self-awareness.
  • Maintain eye contact and set limits by using a firm manner; use a normal tone of voice and show that you are actively listening to them even when they are not in a good mood.
  • Watch out for possible signs of physical aggression, dealing with a challenging patient might be complicated. Remain calm and always put your training into practice.
    • Be aware of symptoms of depression. A depressed patient lacks motivation, energy, and hope. It’s important to monitor and keep an eye in your patient’s activities, check on them in unexpected moments but don’t put a pattern on your rounds. Provide them with activities that can bring out positive thoughts and avoid triggers of any depressive feelings.

    This is not an easy journey, but as a caregiver, you are also a guide to your patient in every step of the way. Respond with kindness and love to whatever heart-breaking changes or painful experience they should undergo. The role that you play in their lives is crucial and very important!

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