6 Psychological and Emotional Effects of a Chronic Lung Disease on Your Elderly Loved One
When your loved one is diagnosed with a lung disease, there are a lot of aspects of his life that change overnight. Whether he’s dealing with COPD, asthma, or even lung cancer, there are plenty of physical changes that he’s facing. Unfortunately, there are also quite a few emotional and psychological effects that he’ll have to deal with as well.
No longer being able to do the things that he used to do so easily can cause severe depression in your elderly loved one. He can also experience depression due to feeling like a burden or feeling as though he’s done something wrong over the years to cause his lung disease.
Your loved one may also experience deep fears, particularly about the future or about what could happen if he’s not at home when an exacerbation strikes. Having elderly care providers available can help with this fear because someone is there who can help him if something should go wrong.
Anxiety and Panic
Anxiety and panic are all too common for an elderly loved one with lung problems. There is the constant panic that his breathing could suddenly become difficult or there is the panic during an attack that he won’t be able to breathe again at all. Talk to your loved one’s doctor about medications that can help to calm the panic.
Loss of Independence
Feeling dependent is common with a lot of chronic problems that your elderly loved one might face, but it’s particularly prevalent with loved ones who have lung issues. They may feel that they can never be alone again or that they constantly have to have oxygen or medications with them. Talk to your loved one’s doctor about ways to help him feel more in control and independent again.
Loved ones who feel that they stand out because of oxygen or because of their condition are likely to suffer from low self-esteem. They may feel uncomfortable going out in public, since something might happen that could draw even more attention to them.
Your loved one has likely lost a lot due to his lung disease, so it’s not unusual if he feels a little bit of anger. Sometimes this is directed at the disease itself, but other times he may be angry at himself or at the medications that he has to take. Journaling can help him to work through his anger, as can talking to someone who can help him to work through the feelings.
When your loved one has a lung disease, there is more going on than just the physical symptoms.
If you or an aging loved one are considering elderly care services in King of Prussia, PA, contact the caring professionals at Reliant At Home Care today (610) 674-6860.