Supporting Significant Life Event: Social Networks Essay

Questions:

Task 1:

This task requires you to understand how significant life events such as dying and bereavement impact on individuals and their social networks.

You could use the context of the case study mentioned above and your work place in health and social care to deal with the tasks.

1.1 Explain the physical, psychological and social impact of bereavement on individuals (that is; the bereaved person).

1.2 Analyse possible group responses to bereavement.

1.3 Analyse the impact for others in health and social care when an individual is bereaved.

Task 2:

Description of problem to be solved: This task requires you to understand the support available for individuals experiencing significant life events such as bereavement.

2.1 Evaluate the effectiveness of organisational policies and procedures of supporting bereaved individuals e.g. Mrs Garry and their social networks.

2.2 Explain how others in social networks may provide support to bereaved individuals

2.3 Evaluate the suitability of external sources of support available for bereaved individuals.

Task 3:

Based on personal reflection of your own experiences within health and social care and the case study provided.

Due to its practice-based requirements; these criteria will also be covered with the Integrated Unit of PPD

This task requires you to be able to analyse responses made by health and social care services to support individuals experiencing significant life events.

3.1 Analyse possible organisational responses to the need to support individuals experiencing a significant life event.

3.2 As a health and social care professional, reflect on your own personal contributions to the support of individuals experiencing significant life events such as bereavement. ?

Answers:

1.1 Physical, psychological and social impact of bereavement on individuals

As referred to in the case scenario, George had suffered the loss of her beloved mother and her death may be considered to be a devastating event. This sudden shock is expressed through both physical as well as psychological reactions. George was unaware of her mother’s condition but when he was informed about her hospitalization and the seriousness of her conditions, George went through a period of intense shock, loss and grief. Bereavement manifests some physical signs of depression, anxiety and fear (Carter, Mikan and Simpson, 2009).

Another physical symptom is that of increased adrenaline. It is one of the features of the “flight” or “fight” responses to certain crisis. The loss of a beloved one often provokes this type of panic. Such adrenaline hike may lead to accelerated heartbeat, involuntary limb shakiness and in entire body. Physical exhaustion is another manifestation. Research shows that digestive problems may emerge after the death of beloved individuals. These are forms of physical symptoms.

On the grounds of psychological aspect, emotional numbness is one of the symptoms of bereavement. Initially the affected individual may feel detached from his life which results from shock of grief. Another common emotional impact is that of anger. One may feel angry with oneself or the individual is no more in life (Skea and Nishioka, 2008).

Bereavement even affects individual socially as the person remains no more in contact with his social surrounding. His social life gets affected severely and the time taken to get used to with the normal life varies from one person to another. The bereaved individual may start neglecting his own appearance for some time and feels quite isolated from the rest of the world (Hays, Kasl and Jacobs, 1994).

1.2 Possible group responses to bereavement

Any bereaved individual may frequently switch amidst alternate emotions of denial, sadness, anger, guilt and fear several times a day. The extent of experiencing bereavement depends on individual attributes as well as personality. It is also dependent on the ways any individual responds to loss or crisis situations, the kind of relationship shared between the bereaved person and who died, and also our attitudes as well as opinions about death as well as life. This may also get affected by the extent to which we are supported by our surroundings and all sorts of stress. Different groups may respond to bereavement in different ways, and this depends upon the type of relationship they managed to have during the course of life. There are groups of people who are affected minor because of their practical lifestyle and personality. It is known to them that people are mortal and that one has to leave this world one day or the other. They face emotional setback for a couple of days and they again their go with the normal flow of life. Again there are some groups of peoples who face it quite seriously and the time period may vary for several days of even months.

Complicated bereavement may occur when any bereaved individual remains incapable of dealing with their personal feelings of grief as well as loss (Hoyle, 2012). They may possess intensified thoughts related to own lives, regrets, personal choices, or even own mortality. The concept of bereavement may instigate several changes which can impact those individuals left behind by their beloved. Although coping with these changes may be severely painful as well as many cases overwhelming, the very result of the process may be positive. For instance, it is identified by individuals that confronting the matter of death enable them to become even more compassionate and pursue all that important in life.

1.3 The impact for others in health and social care when an individual is bereaved

All health care professionals often encounter bereaved individuals by means of personal as well as professional lives. Most of the individuals face common grief and gradually cope, while others face severe setback and reactions prolonging period of which may prove to be fatal for the bereaved individual (Kendler, Myers and Zisook, 2008). This may complicate things. Whereas the experience of bereavement refers to pervasive aspect of growing up, this is a crucial event for some young people and carrying significant outcomes in both short-term and long term. Some new studies and investigations have shown that bereavement can bear significant outcomes even in health and social care workers (Kim et al., 2012). These significances are reflective in varied forms involving spiritual development, respective perspective on personal identities and understanding own individualism along with background. Since health and social care providers are ones who directly deal with such bereaved patients, they experience different forms of bereavement. They get so much involved in managing the situation that sometimes bereavement impacts them adversely.

Bereavement: A risk

Health care providers and other care givers have to undergo difficult situations along with the patients. Bereavement is not only harmful for the closed individual but even for the surrounding as not every time it comes up with negative outcomes (Magill, 2009). The impacts can be of different types like some can develop increased expectations for themselves or acquire new strengths, while some others may get overwhelmed as well as de-motivated, thereby reducing expectations. In all the evidence points towards the need to have complex models of stress factors as well as resources that young people may draw upon and considered for longer time period. The experience of such losses may be quite distinctly associated with risk of negative outcomes. These are linked to social class and other factors.

2.1 Effectiveness of organizational policies and procedures of supporting bereaved individuals

There are evidences that show that organizational policies must be maintained to in order to support bereaved individuals. This would enable young people, children, families and communities including that of professional individuals to cope with the tough situations and respond to the social surrounding in the most desired manner possible. The society needs to understand this that the issue of bereavement is a general attribute with the lives of young people and this is the issue to be dealt with experts (Ando et al., 2013). Arguments may be raised regarding the inclusion of such type of ‘death education’ in educational institutions or professional organizations. Support groups in organizations may have specific relevance to deal with bereavement cases or difficulties and including lives of miserable people. Research also states the need to have increased support as well as training by professionals to deal with issues related to bereavement (Juth et al., 2015).

Palliative experts in organizations have recently given increased attention towards the concerning issues of all bereaved individuals, youth or children. Several innovative initiatives have been like that of interactive websites meant for young people as well as children. However, recent voluntary funded services often center hospices with increased emphasis upon anticipated deaths (Skea and Nishioka, 2008). Some researches concern about the way of accessing services for bereaved individuals. This is associated with the issues concerning personal help as well as health education for youth. These wide areas of policy development require ensuring that bereavement is well included with proper consideration to own right as significant issue for people. Simultaneously it is also significant for such policies to pay specific attention towards the manner bereavement support the living deprivation as well as disadvantages. Hence, while evidence refers to the need for varied range of effective services that is potentially available to every individual (Juth et al., 2015).

2.2 How others in social networks may provide support to bereaved individuals

It is expected that teenagers learn to bear own responsibilities and also manage own behavior or emotions in private as well as public. Several studies have shown that large groups of bereaved individuals avoid talking with anyone regarding experiences. They feel the risk of isolation with time. Bereaved individuals can have varied relationships with their peers or family members. Family and friends play crucial role in identifying and dealing with bereaved individuals and their experiences in bereavement (Carter, Mikan and Simpson, 2009). Families and social surroundings play key role in mitigating with the problem of bereavement of individuals. These may include mutual support from closed ones and also appropriate behavior responses from them. Bereavement even affects individual socially as the person remains no more in contact with his social surrounding. His social life gets affected severely and the time taken to get used to with the normal life varies from one person to another (Pietil?, 2002). The bereaved individual may start neglecting his own appearance for some time and feels quite isolated from the rest of the world. The society needs to understand this that the issue of bereavement is a general attribute with the lives of young people and this is the issue to be dealt with experts (Ierodiakonou – Benou et al., 2008). Arguments may be raised regarding the inclusion of such type of ‘death education’ in educational institutions or professional organizations. Support groups in organizations may have specific relevance to deal with bereavement cases or difficulties and including lives of miserable people. Research also states the need to have increased support as well as training by professionals to deal with issues related to bereavement.

2.3 Suitability of external sources of support available for bereaved individuals

Bereaved individuals can have varied relationships with their peers or family members. Family and friends play crucial role in identifying and dealing with bereaved individuals and their experiences in bereavement. Families and social surroundings play key role in mitigating with the problem of bereavement of individuals (Lee, Woo and Goh, 2012). These may include mutual support from closed ones and also appropriate behavior responses from them. Bereavement even affects individual socially as the person remains no more in contact with his social surrounding. His social life gets affected severely and the time taken to get used to with the normal life varies from one person to another. The national government must set out policies so that palliative care is available and accessible to every individual and also those diagnosed with diseases. People suffering from dementia must have equal access to such services (Carter, Mikan and Simpson, 2009). Focus must be given to discussing as well as documenting wishes. In the health care sector, training must be given to the staffs and professionals to provide suitable care support to patients. The concept of bereavement may instigate several changes which can impact those individuals left behind by their beloved (Shaw, Abrams and Marteau, 1999). Although coping with these changes may be severely painful as well as many cases overwhelming, the very result of the process may be positive. For instance, it is identified by individuals that confronting the matter of death enable them to become even more compassionate and pursue all that important in life (Gall, Henneberry and Eyre, 2013).

3.1 Possible organizational responses to the need to support individuals experiencing a significant life event

Within acute settings, generalist may be competent to identify individuals who at the end of their lives are likely to benefit from specialist care irrespective of medical conditions. NHS Trusts need to ensure that these staffs are given opportunities to learn from various palliative care teams. The national government must set out policies so that palliative care is available and accessible to every individual and also those diagnosed with diseases. People suffering from dementia must have equal access to such services (Read and Bowler, 2007). Focus must be given to discussing as well as documenting wishes. In the health care sector, training must be given to the staffs and professionals to provide suitable care support to patients.

Government has a great role in providing clarity as well as leadership related to policy on care planning as well as its implementation. It needs to consider raising awareness of such issues as bereavement so that every individual is well aware about the cause and impact of bereavement among individuals (Lee, Woo and Goh, 2012). The health committee needs to frame policies and regulation so as to make effort to help the bereaved individuals as George as mentioned in the case scenario. The health staffs and professionals must be given adequate training on dealing with bereaved individuals so as to help them cope with difficult situations (Gall, Henneberry and Eyre, 2013). The concept of bereavement may instigate several changes which can impact those individuals left behind by their beloved. Although coping with these changes may be severely painful as well as many cases overwhelming, the very result of the process may be positive. For instance, it is identified by individuals that confronting the matter of death enable them to become even more compassionate and pursue all that important in life.

3.2 As a health and social care professional, reflect on your own personal contributions to the support of individuals experiencing significant life events such as bereavement

Reflection on my personal contribution towards support of individuals experiencing life events would be beneficial. Being one such medical professional in the health sector I feel it is my prime duty to focus on various types of care that can be provided to individuals undergoing some tough conditions (Lee and Kim, 2003). One such area is with bereaved individuals. These are individuals who seem to waste their rest of the life in grief of any one of their beloved ones. The loss of death of a closed one may cause severe damages to lives of some people. I believe these are the individuals who need mental care the most. Support from family and society are vital for them and this is the area I focus on as a human being. Bereaved individuals may struggle over several years to major bereavement often unnoticed by the surroundings (Holland et al., 2013). The idea that an individual would soon get over with the loss may be wrong as the person may revisit different bereavement such as struggling to deal with all sorts of overwhelming feelings, possibility of being isolated from social groups, increased sense of risk as well as vulnerability, lack of proper help from social surroundings, lack of decision making power in lives, etc. One must not let any sort of discomfort to prevent one from reaching out to the bereaved individual. The most significant thing that can be done for any bereaved person is simply to be there at the time of need for support as well as caring presence to help the person cope with pain and stress (Stajduhar, Martin and Cairns, 2010). The society needs to understand this that the issue of bereavement is a general attribute with the lives of young people and this is the issue to be dealt with experts. Arguments may be raised regarding the inclusion of such type of ‘death education’ in educational institutions or professional organizations. Support groups in organizations may have specific relevance to deal with bereavement cases or difficulties and including lives of miserable people (Ierodiakonou – Benou et al., 2008). Research also states the need to have increased support as well as training by professionals to deal with issues related to bereavement.

3.3 Make recommendations for improving the support available in a Care Home for residents and their social networks when affected by significant life events such as bereavement

In a Care Home for residents as well as social networks, support to bereaved individuals may be improved by certain life events. When any individual is suffering from the pain of loss of closed ones, it is important for the surrounding individuals to be more concerned about the person and his conditions. They may be willing to talk about the person who passed away. In that case one of the most effective things one can do is to listen to the bereaved individual carefully, and provide them adequate time as well as space to grieve off. Empathy is what needed to act as the supporting factor for bereaved people (Wong, Ussher and Perz, 2009).

It is important to communicate with the bereaved individuals on a regular basis either by directly or through calls, email or letter. The person needs to be encouraged to talk and there needs to be created an environment where the bereaved individual can be themselves as well as exhibit their feelings and not that put up something else in front (Gall, Henneberry and Eyre, 2013). Their mood swings are common and this needs to be well understood by others. Bereavement even affects individual socially as the person remains no more in contact with his social surrounding. His social life gets affected severely and the time taken to get used to with the normal life varies from one person to another. The bereaved individual may start neglecting his own appearance for some time and feels quite isolated from the rest of the world (McKiernan et al., 2013).

The death of any closed one is the most difficult things one experiences. The struggle is with several frightening emotions involving anger, depression and guilt. Often the bereaved individual feels alone and pressed with grief but having someone as support beside to share all feelings.

One must not let any sort of discomfort to prevent one from reaching out to the bereaved individual (Holland et al., 2013). The most significant thing that can be done for any bereaved person is simply to be there at the time of need for support as well as caring presence to help the person cope with pain and stress.

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