A MedlinePlus article published this holiday season outlines tips for families coping with a suddenly critically ill family member. Kelly McElligott, clinical social worker at Loyola University Health System, states that “families are totally unprepared for sudden injury and overwhelmed when it is a very serious injury. Families need a road map to guide them through their worst moments.”

McElligott outlines the following steps for a person to deal with such a sudden hospitalization of a loved one:

  • Take care of yourself.
    • "If you do not take care of yourself, you cannot take care of someone else."
  • Continue to live.
    • "Life does not stop because someone is in the hospital. Other family members need attention and support also."
  • Let others help.
    • "Friends, relatives, colleagues and others will offer assistance and it is critical to accept help.”
  • Ask questions.
    • "No individual could know what to expect when a severe injury occurs."
  • Be open about your experience.
    • Reach out to people for support by sharing your experience or what you have witnessed.”
  • Find peer support.
    • Others who have had similar experiences can help people understand that it's still possible to laugh, socialize and enjoy life.

For the complete article, please follow this link.