Healthy Living

AIDS: How to Give a Patient Emotional Support

AIDS: How to Give a Patient Emotional Support


For a patient with HIV, physical health is not the only issue they have to face. Along with physical illness, there are loads of mental health issues that may also affect an HIV patient. These issues could be anything from depression and anxiety to insecurity and others. Many people suffer from shock and surprise when they learn that they have been infected with HIV. It is perfectly normal for patients with HIV to have strong reactions when they find out that they have been infected with this disease. They could feel fear, anger, or overwhelming emotions. They may often feel helpless, sad, and anxious about this serious disease.

The thought of having to take care of someone who has AIDS can be very hard. It can sometimes feel overwhelming and emotional support can be difficult. You should know that caring for someone who is affected with AIDS will take plenty of time and effort. You have to be able to provide uplifting words of encouragement and constantly support them through their moods, challenges, and suffering. People suffering from the condition usually go through various stages of dealing with their illness. It could include anger, denial, depression, anxiety, fear, stress, and finally acceptance.

Here are some tips and ways that you can use when you are trying to give a patient with AIDS some emotional support:

Encouragement is a big factor that comes into play.

When you encourage someone, it provides an uplifting feeling. Through encouragement and positive words, you can change someone’s opinion about themselves and that can be a very positive thing to do for patients dealing with AIDS. It is important to let people who have AIDS know that they are cared for and that you are going to be there to provide them with the emotional support they need.

You can also let them know that they are valuable and they are loved the way they are. One of the best ways you can help make a patient who has AIDS feel comfortable is to maybe let them help around the house or help with other things so that they can feel useful and good about themselves. You can also attend therapy sessions with them, attend treatment sessions with them, and provide support and encouragement that could help them stay strong against their illness.

When patients with AIDS are part of a larger group, you should include them in activities so they do not feel left out. With the right care, most people can continue to cope and keep up with their regular day-to-day activities and continue doing so comfortably for many years. Talking about their feelings with close ones, encouraging friends and family, can also go a long way in helping patients feel much better in dealing with their illness.

Keep on communicating.

It is important to be in touch with the person who has AIDS and being a part of their everyday lives through constant and regular communication. Regular communication, which isn’t interfering or which is easy and comfortable for the person affected can help you make the person feel all right and help them talk to you about anything related to the disease.

They may also feel more comfortable talking about things that they might be going through. It is best to talk honestly about AIDS so that the person is more comfortable around you and has trust in what you say. They should feel like they can discuss their issues or problems with you. Of course, it is always best to have a doctor monitor the patient's condition to make sure that everything is fine, but that doesn’t mean you can’t talk to the person and try and help them out with what they are going through.

Talk normally.

If anyone you know has been affected by AIDS, then one of the best things you can do to help them cope with it is to treat the situation normally and not like there is anything wrong. However, this does not mean that you should look down upon them or discriminate them in any way. It just means that you should treat them like you would anybody else or like you would treat them without being awkward about their disease. Provide to these people positive coping strategies and encouragement to help deal with AIDS. It is always best to do this by also being kind, courteous, and respectful of them. You can also check for other resources such as clubs, workshops, support groups, etc., to help other people and the affected person engage in more activities.

Help the person affected by AIDS find out what it is like to be around people who are friendly and good for them. Some people usually withdraw when they find out that others have AIDS due to shock or stigma. In such cases, help them get back to living their normal lives by being friendly along with giving them encouragement to live their lives comfortably with AIDS. Give them a nice topic of conversation to talk about, compliment them, or just be kind. Help them have some confidence in themselves.

The Bottom Line

Treat people with HIV/AIDS like you would treat anyone else. However, when you do deal with people with this condition, make sure that you use your common sense so as to not accidentally become rude to them. Reassure them that you do not want to cause any offense or distress.

They are human too and they need to be treated with respect and kindness like any other person. Instilling a sense of normalcy, positivity, and creating a calm and comfortable environment can help a person better deal with AIDS in their lives. You should treat people with this condition fairly and understand that at the end of the day, they too are just people who try to cope with the daily struggles in life. The only difference is that they are the ones who need a little more support than others.

It is very important to give emotional support for people suffering from AIDS because having a crutch is the best thing for any troubled soul.