With so much attention being paid to wellness as we continue to enjoy greater longevity, it seems natural that our society is taking a closer look at how we can also approach the end-of-life better. The Death Wellness movement has been gaining momentum and acceptance as more people in America and worldwide seek to meet death on their own terms.
A recent report in Fast Company explores the many ways that society is turning away from clinical death, in a sterile hospital setting pumped full of drugs, towards a more gentle parting. And a big part of being able to meet death with more peace and less fear is being able to have open and honest conversations with loved ones. By approaching death with thought, planning and compassion, dying doesn’t have to be an isolating, frightening experience.
The medical community is also embracing a gentler approach to the end-of-life with efforts focused less on extending life at all costs and more on pain management and comfort care. Whether it’s through cultural or religious customs, families, social workers, and even death doulas can help guide dying patients and their love-ones to a more connected and human experience of death.
In a society that plans for everything with insurance and retirement savings, the names of who will take care of our children, our pets, our plants should we become ill or injured, the one thing we often don’t discuss at all is our death. But the Death Wellness movement is gradually opening up more avenues to discuss end-of-life options, from Death Cafes to card games that have players rate their wishes regarding death, people of all ages are becoming more interested in normalizing the discussion surrounding death.
Talking frankly with your health care provider and your family can help ensure a better death when the time comes. And by breaking the silence surrounding end-of-life, not only can the individual approaching death be more supported and less fearful, loved-ones may have a greater opportunity to fully know their loved-one and celebrate their lives. Learn more about finding or training to become a death doula by following this link to the International End of Life Doula Association.