Hopefully, you’ll never have to deal with a loved one’s health emergency. As with anything unexpected, though, it’s always better to be prepared for something that never happens than not be prepared for something that could happen tomorrow. When a health emergency strikes, proper actions both during and after the emergency could literally be the difference between life and death. Fortunately, there are a few steps you can take to help both you and your loved one deal with the emergency in the best way possible.
Information Is Power
In determining the state of someone’s condition, details matter. Whether you call an emergency dispatcher or a doctor, they’re going to need details to determine the proper course of action for your loved one. That’s why it’s important to describe, as best you can, the symptoms that your loved one is experiencing.
If your loved one can talk, ask questions to help you better understand what they’re feeling. When on the phone, don’t leave out any details, no matter how small they seem. By themselves, some symptoms could be harmless, but in the presence of other symptoms, that symptom you thought was small could be what determines just how serious the emergency is. Effectively communicating this information to someone who can help could make all the difference in the treatment of your loved one.
Remaining calm may be difficult in an emergency situation, especially in one that involves the health of a loved one. You must do everything in your power, though, to stay calm for the duration of the emergency. If you don’t, you might end up making a mistake that could make treatment of your loved one more difficult, such as not accurately describing symptoms, causing your loved one to become frightened, worsening their condition, or even over-stressing yourself, resulting in a medical emergency of your own.
There will be a time, once your loved one has been stabilized, to cry and scream and generally let out all the emotions that have been building up inside you. Until that time comes, though, stay calm, stay steady, and be the strength your loved one doesn’t currently have.
Prepare for Later
In the case of many health emergencies, long-term follow-up care will be required. To ensure this care is as effective as possible, you want to be sure to listen intently to all that your loved one’s ER doctors and nurses have to say, writing as much down as you can so you won’t forget it.
While much of this information will ultimately be captured in your loved one’s discharge papers, don’t assume that every bit of information that could be useful to your loved one’s primary care physician such as Rural Health Services Consortium Inc. will be included in those papers. Take notes on things such as diet and activity restrictions, suggested medications, and practical tips you are given to help your loved one in their recovery. You may end up not needing this information, but it’s good to know you have it in case you do.
Seeing your loved one experience a health emergency can be a trying experience. When they pull through, however, it can add a whole new depth of appreciation for this person that you never had before. Take advantage of this emergency to draw closer to your loved one, letting them know just how much they mean to you, so you’ll never feel unfulfilled in the event that another emergency strikes.