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Grief Is a Unique Challenge

Grief Is a Unique Challenge Grief is difficult for everyone. Often, the psychosocial and physical aspects of grief are more severe than expected and become perhaps the greatest life challenge of all.

The December issue of Mayo Clinic Women’s HealthSource provides an overview of grief — a normal reaction to loss. In years past, grief often was described as following a certain pattern or orderly progression from one feeling to another.

But there is no one way to grieve. People who are grieving experience many different emotions in any number of combinations.

They may include denial, sadness, anger, confusion, despair and even guilt. Physical reactions can include sleeping problems, changes in appetite, a drop in energy level, body aches and pain or the development or worsening of an illness.

Time spent grieving varies, too. Some people take months to fully accept or adapt to a loss. For others, the process may take years.

To help cope with grief:

    — Express feelings: Suppressing thoughts and emotions may prevent working through grief. Friends, family or members of the religious community often can be a source of support and comfort. Other options are support groups or grief counselors.
    — Delay any major decisions or changes: Decisions that affect life and lifestyle, such as housing changes or new ways of handling finances, should wait a while. Advice from a trusted family member or friend, financial adviser or attorney may be helpful.
    — Take care of personal health: Eating right, getting adequate sleep and limiting alcohol are important. Regular exercise can relieve stress and anxiety.
    — Be patient: Expecting to simply “get over” grief is unrealistic. Ups and downs may last for weeks or months following a loss. Though some feelings of loss may never fully go away, the most intense signs and symptoms of grief typically diminish over time, within six months or so.

Grief that is prolonged and debilitating may be a sign of depression or post-traumatic stress disorder. A doctor should be consulted for treatment options.

Source: Mayo Clinic

Grief Is a Unique Challenge

Rick Nauert PhD

Rick Nauert, PhDDr. Rick Nauert has over 25 years experience in clinical, administrative and academic healthcare. He is currently an associate professor for Rocky Mountain University of Health Professionals doctoral program in health promotion and wellness. Dr. Nauert began his career as a clinical physical therapist and served as a regional manager for a publicly traded multidisciplinary rehabilitation agency for 12 years. He has masters degrees in health-fitness management and healthcare administration and a doctoral degree from The University of Texas at Austin focused on health care informatics, health administration, health education and health policy. His research efforts included the area of telehealth with a specialty in disease management.

APA Reference
Nauert PhD, R. (2015). Grief Is a Unique Challenge. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 22, 2018, from https://psychcentral.com/news/2010/01/04/grief-is-a-unique-challenge/10514.html

 

Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 6 Oct 2015
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 6 Oct 2015
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.