20 Aug Caring for someone with a mental illness
Just like it is with physical illnesses, it is also exceptionally important that you care as much for those that are mentally ill, perhaps even a little more. People with mental illnesses require constant, gentle care and reassurance and to just lend an ear when they wish to vent or speak about all that’s upsetting them. In this article, we have attempted to explore some ways in which you can care for such people in the best possible way.
1: HELP THEM TAKE THE FIRST STEP:
The first step towards recovery is to seek help. Many people suffering from mental illnesses shy away from treatment because of the stigma attached to mental health and as a carer one of your biggest responsibilities to nudge them towards getting the help they need.
2: DISCUSS THE DIAGNOSIS:
Once the person at hand decides to get help, the next step is a thorough examination and then a diagnosis. If you find out the person that you are caring for has been diagnosed with a mental illness, then the next step is to simply discuss and talk about this diagnosis and what it means. A diagnosis is both relieving and stressful at the same time, relieving because you finally know whats wrong and stressful because of treatment and the way forward. During times of such conflicted emotions, it is important that you as the carer stick by the person and talks about the situation and the way forward with treatment.
3: PARTNER WITH DOCTORS:
Mental illnesses require very good doctors that make the patient feel comfortable enough to tackle their problems head first and hence, the next step for the carer after diagnosis is to partner with good doctors. Further, talk to the doctor about treatment options, emergency situations, medications and so on.
4: KEEP TRACK OF MEDICATIONS: Medication has often worked wonders when it comes to mental illnesses, thus it is very important to keep proper track of consumption of the same, every day. The carer must know what pill should be taken when, the side effects of each pill etc. He or she should also keep a close watch over the patient if the medication dosage is changed or a new kind of medication is introduced.
5: MAKE A LIST OF IMPORTANT INFORMATION:
As a carer, always keep a list of all important information regarding the person you are caring for, the mental illness, emergency telephone numbers, doctors information, early warning signs, medication, side effects etc.