The help of home cancer care services is invaluable when it comes to effective cancer pain management for seniors. For one thing, cancer pain is often under-treated when it does not have to be. Why?
- Some doctors or other professionals shy from asking about cancer pain, or they don’t know enough to ask. On the other hand, home caregivers see people who have cancer all the time. They live in the real world of pain, and they aren’t scared to ask patients if they’re hurting. Part of their job is ensuring that people get the pain control they need. Caregivers will communicate and help patients get necessary prescriptions.
- Many patients are reluctant to verbalize that they are in pain. This is for any of many reasons: they’re afraid to admit they’re in pain, they don’t want to bother people, they think they should just deal with the pain as a fact of life, or they don’t want to face the possibility their cancer might be getting worse. Whatever the reason, cancer care services are skilled at opening dialogues with patients. They build trust and rapport, and patients often feel comfortable articulating their feelings and needs.
- Many patients fear becoming addicted or are afraid of possible side effects. These reasons are valid, but in-home caregivers know how to properly deal with any possible side effects. They reduce addiction fears by supervising the amount of medications and by holding patients accountable.
In-home caregivers help with pain management other ways too.
- They gain the trust of patients, and when patients say they are in pain, caregivers speak their “lingo” and believe them. They will help determine pain levels but will never argue with patients about their pain or belittle them.
- They recognize pain symptoms that other people may miss, thus leading to quicker treatment.