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Diseases & Conditions : Care of the Terminally Ill Child

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    • A Child's Concept of Death

      For infants and toddlers, death has very little meaning. School-aged children begin to understand death as permanent, universal, and inevitable. A predominant theme in adolescence is a feeling of immortality or being exempt from death.

    • Anticipatory Grief

      Anticipatory grief is similar to the normal process of mourning, but it occurs before the actual death.

    • Discussing Death with Children

      The ultimate goal in discussing death with a dying child is to optimize his or her comfort and alleviate any fears. If the child is not ready to discuss death, the most helpful step parents can take is to wait until he or she is ready.

    • For Parents: Important Decisions to Be Made in the Dying Process

      Detailed information on important decisions to be made when a child is dying, including the right to refuse treatment, to die at home versus the hospital, advanced directives, do not resuscitate, autopsy, organ donation, palliative hospice care, and funeral arrangements.

    • Glossary - Care of the Terminally Ill Child

      Glossary of terms relating to terminal illness in children

    • Grief and Bereavement

      The process of grieving is often long and painful for parents, siblings, relatives, friends, peers, teachers, neighbors, and anyone that understands the loss of a child.

    • Home Page - Care of the Terminally Ill Child

      Detailed information on care of the terminally ill child

    • Hospice

      The goal of hospice care is to provide the terminally ill child peace, comfort, and dignity.

    • Online Resources - Care of the Terminally Ill Child

      List of online resources to find additional information on terminal illness in children

    • Physical Needs of the Dying Child

      A terminally ill child has many of the same needs as any seriously ill child, including a routine for sleep and rest, and for pain management.

    • Psychosocial Needs of the Dying Child

      The child with a terminal illness has the same need for love, emotional support, and normal activities as any person facing death.

    • Supportive/Palliative Care

      Supportive, or palliative, care is care aimed at comfort of the child versus cure and treatment.

    • The Dying Process

      Understanding the physical and mental changes the body goes through as death occurs, may help alleviate some fears and misconceptions about death.

    • Topic Index - Care of the Terminally Ill Child

      Detailed information on care of the terminally ill child