Question: I am going through a very hard and stressful time dealing with my husband’s illness. He had bleeding in the brain and is in a nursing home for two months.
Dr. Amy: It can be incredibly stressful when something happens to a loved one and suddenly they're sick. All kinds of fears and emotions may rise up. If you have concerns about your husband’s medical care, I encourage you to have an open conversation with his doctors. Give yourself permission to ask your questions and expect thorough and complete answers. Often, not knowing what to expect is a significant source of stress.
In addition to making sure your husband is getting proper care, it’s important to take good care of yourself. Getting enough sleep, eating lots of fruit and veggies, and getting regular exercise will all help you feel your best and make it easier to handle stress. Now is also a great time to treat yourself to some extra attention. A little pampering can go a long way. Listening to music, taking a long bubble bath, and seeing a movie are all easy enough to organize. Spending time with friends will ease your stress, too. Feeling connected to others and feeling that they understand what you're going through is important to mental health at all times, but especially in times of crisis.
I encourage you to talk to your doctor if your stress becomes too much. He or she may recommend a medication or other strategies to help you through this difficult time. I send you strength and peace.
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