This may be a somber article, but the truth is, everyone should know this information. I have lost both of my parents, my Dad 12 years ago and my Mom only 2 years, 1 month ago. My Mom had Congestive Heart Failure, coupled with Diabetes. I watched her go from a vibrant, spunky spitfire to a shell of a woma deeply depressed. She lived with me, so I had to have all of the information that the Doctors needed to try and save her life. Sadly, my sister and I had to take my Mom off of life support in the end, sending her to be with her one true love, my Dad.
No one is ever prepared for illness, but I hope you follow these tips. I suggest a notebook to compile the following information:
**1. Doctors name **- This is extremely important to have so you can provide a history of your parent’s health.
**2. List of allergies **– Could mean the difference between life and death, literally. Write down all allergies and keep. This is especially important if one of your parents is allergic to medication — penicillin, for example.
3. Advance directives – This is a tough one, but it is good to know what your parent’s wishes are regarding life-support.
**4. List of medications and all supplements **– This is good to know so the doctors can assess how to provide treatment and not interact adversely with current medication.
**5. Religious affiliations **– In case of blood transfusions, this could be a deciding factor.
6. Insurance Carrier – Know the name of your parent's health insurance providers and their policy numbers.
**7. Prior operations or major medical procedures **– Especially if a pacemaker or defibrillator was inserted.
**8. Daily habits **– If your parent smoked or drank, give this information to the Doctor.