Palliative care for carers

Carers are considered part of the palliative care team. Knowing what support is available can help you and the person you care for make the right choices.

Palliative care helps people live their life as fully and as comfortably as possible when they have a life-limiting illness.

Caring for someone with a life-limiting illness can be an emotional experience. It can also be rich and rewarding. Because of the emotional strain associated with providing this type of care, you may experience some negative feelings. These can include:

  • tiredness
  • resentment
  • isolation
  • stress

Children and teenagers caring for someone receiving palliative care may need extra help. They may need support at school to make sure they keep up with their studies. They may also need support to access training and employment opportunities and to maintain their social networks.

Palliative care can offer you practical support for things like:

  • respite care to give you a break when you need one
  • advice on how to give care, including medications
  • help to get equipment you need
  • after hours advice and support
  • counselling to help with any of your concerns

Getting this support will help you provide the best care you can. It will also help you look after yourself.

Planning for the end of life can help you think clearly and make decisions.

Palliative Care Australia has a lot of information for carers. Its directory of services can help you find palliative care support, including bereavement counselling services. You can also find support if you are caring for a child or young person.

CarerHelp also provides free information, resources and advice, including managing grief and loss, to help when caring for a loved one.

Carer Gateway also has information on managing your finances while being a carer.

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