Hiccupping. Itching. Changes in sleep and appetite. These are just some of the seemingly harmless warning flags that may possibly point to kidney disease. And with upwards of 20 million people in the U.S. alone living with the disease, in addition to many more who are as yet undiagnosed, it’s imperative that people experiencing these symptoms bring them to the attention of the health care provider.
How Can You Help Improve Quality of Life for Someone With Kidney Disease?
If kidney disease is confirmed, sharing these guidelines from the National Kidney Center with the person you are caring for can help them to improve quality of life:
- Become educated. Power is attained through understanding, and encouraging the person to learn as much as possible about the disease will be helpful towards more effectively managing it.
- Maintain control. It is, ultimately, the responsibility of the person with kidney disease to take note of symptoms, keep track of test results and treatments, and manage the disease and daily lifestyle choices. As the person’s caregiver, you can empower them to be conscious of their sense of control.
- Remain healthy. Following a diet that’s ideal for kidney disease, on top of engaging in doctor-approved exercise and taking medications as prescribed are vital for the person’s health.
- Be productive. Both mental and physical wellbeing are positively influenced when the person has purposeful work and activities to do. Help the individual you love to stay active by volunteering with a cause of interest.
- Be proactive. Encourage the person with kidney disease to consider a plan for the future, including various treatment choices to consider if their condition should change or worsen.
Most importantly for those with kidney disease – or any other health condition – it’s critical to remain socially connected with friends and family who can provide encouragement and inspiration. As the individual’s main family caregiver, you play a vital role in providing necessary camaraderie, meal planning and preparation, personal care services, housekeeping, and the many other ways you provide assistance to improve quality of life. Be sure that while you are providing care for your loved one you are also taking plenty of time to care for yourself, something that is incredibly important but often overlooked by overwhelmed family caregivers.
At Carolina Hearts Home Care, we’re on hand to partner with family caregivers to ensure the best possible care is provided at all times, while family members take the time away they need for their own physical and mental wellbeing. Call us at 1-855-277-2005 to find out more about how we can help.