Some things in life are unplanned, especially when it comes to being sick and then hospitalized.
When someone you love is admitted to the hospital, even for a planned surgery, there are certain things that you can do to make it better
for them. Even if you are not faced with this right now,
it is good to be informed, so you can have the best possible
outcome for your loved one.
Recently, this happened in my family.
A trip to the emergency room with my nineteen year old son, turned into a three week long
There are things that you can do
for your loved one that will help them while they are in the hospital
in the recovery process.
Having a backround as a Registered Nurse,
I know how hospitals function, so from a professional, as well as, from a caregivers side,
this information will be invaluable to you.
There is a lot going on behind the scenes
that you may not be aware of,
and being somewhat flexible can help keep you and your loved one stay sane.
Although you may not have the same controls as you do at home, you can still have a say
in the care your loved one receives. So….my number one tip,
ASK QUESTIONS! The olden days are gone where Doctors were treated like Gods.
No disrespect needed, but you are paying THEM for a service, and it is your absolute right to
ASK AWAY! You may or may not get the answers right then that you need,
but most Doctors are willing to give answers. Even as a trained medical professional,
I never pretend to know it all and need answers as a caregiver.
Knowing the What and Why can be beneficial since you will probably be near your loved one the most during
a hospital stay, and on many occasions, help in the recovery process. So,
DO NOT BE AFRAID TO ASK QUESTIONS!!
At one point, I knew I would not be around when the Doctor made the daily rounds,
so I left a list of questions.
You can also call them. Nurses are also a great resource, and can usually answer any questions you might have.
Be present and visible. Yes, around the clock!
Hospital staff are frequently overloaded,
and your presence really makes a difference. You act as an advocate to your loved one,
who may be unable to have a say. Be prepared to hear beeping machines!
Hospitals are actually very stimulating and noisy places to be, so
promoting a restful environment can happen more by posting a sign on the door and holding phone calls at intervals.
Take turns with other family members and friends. At the first possible chance,
bring comforting items from home. I brought several pillows with our own pillowcases
and some super cozy blankets. Being in the hospital can be scary and lonely,
and things that are familiar
bring a lot of peace. My son used them the entire stay!
A trip to the gift shop at the hospital produced a soft Teddy Bear the size of a pillow,
and you bet he donned a baseball cap from my sons favorite football team.
He hung out in the hospital room the entire stay!
Okay, I hear ya, my son is nineteen years old, but never underestimate a soft snugly stuffed animal!
Age is not relevant when you are not at the top of your game.
Definitely visit the gift shop for that one of a kind gift. A card, balloon, books, or magazines, and even flowers and plants are available
when a trip to a store is not feasible.
Recoop offers a gorgeous 100% Organic Cotton Recovery Robe that can be ordered online. Perfect in speeding up the recovery process! These will be perfect for anyone you know experiencing illness, as it promotes recovery and well-being. Pictured below.
As a side note, if you are far away from someone you love that is in the hospital,
most gift shops will let you purchase items over the phone and deliver to the room.
Although the hospital supplies the basics such as toothbrush, lotion, etc..
your own personal items,
well…there’s nothing like it. Do not forget deodorant!
You might want to add some socks, slippers(non slippery), shorts, loose t-shirts, and robe.
I am sure you have seen the beautiful gowns they give
you in the hospital!? Not!!
Once the get well cards start rolling in,
tape them to the wall over the hospital bed and in a place visible to
your loved one.
This will ensure that the hospital staff will see
that their patient is an actual person, and someone highly cherished.
It will also remind your loved one that they are, as well!
Most hospital stays are very short, but
even a few days can be monotonous and boring.
Be a motivator to get your loved one in recovery mode as soon as possible!
Once they are able to sit in a chair, and go for a walk,
facilitate it! Like I said, hospital staff are busy,
so anything you can do is great! The sooner a person gets moving, the better for their
Something else you can do to help beat the boredom
and give hope for the future,
is start a Vision Board. Get some magazines of interest and bring scissors, poster board, and glue.
This is a common practice for dreamers and
entrepreneurs, and anyone that wants to be
Great way to promote recovery! Another tip,
bring in a blank Journal and Daily Devotion or Quote Book.
If they are unable to read or write, you can read something inspirational to them.
One last thing, you have seen the adult coloring books out there, right?
A friend of mine bought me one, and it was filled with
inspirational quotes. I left it in the room so everyone who came for a visit
could color one and then pin it up
with the cards!
Something else to keep in
mind is taking care of yourself, the caregiver. The road to recovery is different
for each person, and you will need support and care, as well.
You and your loved one will get through this in time. Hang in there,
and reach out to others for support. Stay in touch with us at Recoop. Join our Facebook
and Instagram community for inspiration and information
you need to live a healthy and happy life.
Family and friends will be happy to help you, as did my family and support network,
when going through this time. Recoop offers a free downloadable Self Care Guide that can help.