Dignity & Control

When reaching your final years or if faced with the diagnosis of a life limiting illness the more planning and preparation you put in place, the easier it may make the end of your life and can provide comfort for those left behind, reducing the burden on them to clear up financial, property or other issues.

Preparing to die doesn’t mean giving up, taking to your bed or spending the rest of your time deep in despair. It’s about accepting the limitations of your body and mind and finding the best quality of life until the end.

You may have a very clear idea of how you want your life to end or you may not yet have any preferences or set wishes, but by making preparations you can enhance the quality of the life you have left and deal with the emotional issues associated with your death.

Some terminal illnesses can be particularly hard to endure and many people often express fear of an end devoid of dignity. It is best to make your wishes clear whilst you are able and instruct people you trust to carry them out. This section contains advice on how to manage dying with dignity.

You can also find advice to help you prepare; information on living wills, types of funeral and saying your final goodbyes. There is a directory of Law Society approved probate solicitors and FSA approved financial advisers to provide you with additional expertise should you require it.

A useful document to help you prepare is available at the Marie Curie Palliative Care Institute, which provides guidance on the different aspects of care required at the end of life, including comfort measures, prescribing medicines and discontinuation of inappropriate interventions. This plan also talks about physiological and spiritual care for the person who is dying and their family.