When someone suffers a serious injury or illness their biggest source of support will usually be their family.
This support can be practical and emotional and can include:
- Supporting someone with their treatment and accompanying them to medical appointments;
- Encouraging them to maintain a healthy diet and lifestyle;
- Making sure they take their medication;
- Helping them with personal care such as showering and dressing;
- Being supportive and trying to keep their spirits up;
- Encouraging them to socialise as they might become withdrawn.
If a family member has been injured or suffered an illness while serving and are unlikely to recover then it is likely that they will be medically discharged. This can be a very difficult time because of the uncertainty involved about what the future will hold.
You can learn more about the process for a medical discharge, how to access treatment and support services here.
Being a carer
If your family member has a very serious injury or illness you may end up in a role where you are acting as a carer. Being a carer is a huge responsibility and can be very demanding.
If you are acting as a carer then you may be entitled to help from your local council. You may be able to arrange for someone to step in every now and again to give you a break or for someone to help with tasks such as gardening or housework.
You can find more information through Citizens Advice including what financial benefits you might be able to claim as a carer.
Carers UK is another great resource of information and advice.
It is really important as a carer that you look after your mental health. You can find more information on sources of mental health support here.