Grief and Grieving - Treatment Overview
Grief itself is
a natural response that doesn't require medical treatment. But sometimes people
need help getting through the grieving process.
- Medicine. During the
initial days of grief,
anxiety or sleeplessness can make it difficult to
function. If you suffer more than a few days of severe agitation, talk to your
doctor about whether a short-term prescription
sedative medicine can help you. (Doctors
disagree about the usefulness of medicines for people who are grieving. Some
doctors believe that giving medicines for anxiety or sleep may
interfere with the ability to grieve.)
- Counseling. If you find that
obstacles to grieving are making it difficult to
function after a loss, talk to a
grief counselor, attend a bereavement support group,
or both. Counseling and support groups can also help you work through
unresolved grief from a past loss.
Chronic grief and complications
If you or someone
you know exhibits
suicidal behavior (such as thinking you cannot stop yourself from harming
or killing yourself), call 911 or other emergency services immediately.
If you find that a major loss has
caused complications, such as
depression, prolonged anxiety,
post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), or severe
and prolonged grief, see your doctor and a grief counselor for treatment.
If you have a chronic medical condition that has been made worse by the
emotional and physical stress of grief, see your doctor immediately.