Important for relatives: Dealing with stress and grief

As already described on the previous pages: Sepsis does not only mean a break for the person affected, but also for life partners and relatives.

During the acute illness, you have been there for the patient, possibly visiting him regularly for months in hospital or in the rehabilitation facility. As soon as the patient is back home, the support continues. Everyday life has to be restructured, doctor's appointments have to be made and care has to be provided. There may also be financial worries and fears about the future. This situation often leads to exhaustion and psychological problems for relatives.

→ Please refer to

“Psychological effects”

It is important that you also allow yourself rest and time out. It is of utmost importance that you manage your strength, because the recovery process of your relative can take months. If possible, integrate fixed times into the daily schedule that you use exclusively for yourself, for a walk, meeting with friends, etc.

Do not be afraid to ask friends and family for help.

Special support is needed by relatives whose family member is so seriously ill that the dying process is inevitable. In this case, it is advisable to contact local hospice and palliative care facilities.


Unfortunately, quite a few sepsis patients die both in the acute phase and in the later course.

The loss of a loved one is an exceptional situation and shakes the mental balance. Grief is not an illness, but it can make you ill in the long run if the help and support you need is not forthcoming.

If necessary, there are numerous offers for the bereaved to cope with their grief.

If you feel that you cannot cope with the situation, you can turn to hospice services.

The way in which you can cope with your grief will be discussed individually with the staff. Another possibility would be a bereavement group. You can find appropriate offers online, e.g. via the National Contact and Information Centre for the suggestion and support of self-help groups.

Information & help:

You can find hospice services in your area at:

Information Centre for the suggestion and support of self-help groups: