Published on November 22, 2023

How to Protect and Support Your Mental Health After an Injury

When a patient receives improper care or an incorrect diagnosis, their situation could point to a case of medical negligence. Unfortunately, expectant mothers and new parents fall among those most likely to receive insufficient support. Figures from NHS England show that over 30,000 new mothers and pregnant women are on waiting lists for mental health services.

Ill mental health is just one consequence of serious bodily injuries as victims struggle to adapt and recover. No matter your circumstances, it’s worth knowing how to safeguard your mental health after a serious injury. 

What’s the link between physical injury and mental health?

Any physical injury can lead to detrimental effects on mental health. As personal situations worsen, hospital trusts are more likely to face claims from victims. One NHS hospital trust paid out £13.5m in medical negligence claims in a year, with others owing similar compensation to patients.

Feelings of frustration, sadness, and hopelessness can lead to increased isolation. In turn, those recovering from painful or debilitating injuries might start to feel lonely and lose motivation. The longer someone spends feeling distressed after their physical injury, the more likely it is that they could experience declining mental health.

How to look after yourself after an injury

Your actions could help to promote your wellbeing after an injury. Even though you might not feel up to doing much, finding the energy to look after yourself will be hugely beneficial and could safeguard your recovery too.

Using your support network and any local services is critical. You can also try to stay on track with your recovery by adopting several healthy habits, which might include:

Seeking professional help

Medical advice, especially that concerning physiotherapy, medication, and healing techniques, should only ever be taken from a qualified clinician or healthcare professional. Try not to refer to online tips or self-diagnose on the internet.

If you suffered your injury because of an accident that wasn’t your fault, it could be worth pursuing compensation with the support of a personal injury claim solicitor. Putting your trust in the professionals will help you to secure a better outcome.

Eating and drinking 

It might be difficult to return to your usual diet after your injury, especially if you’re still in pain. That doesn’t mean you should neglect your nutritional needs, though, so you should try to get some vitamins and minerals in your body wherever possible. 

Aim to meet minimum calorific requirements in the food you eat, and don’t hesitate to use supplements in the meantime if you’re struggling.

Socialising, when you feel like it

Lastly, never force yourself into spending time with other people if you’re not ready or if the thought alone makes you feel overwhelmed. However, if you’ve reached a point in your recovery where you feel like socialising could be beneficial, it’s important to stick to your usual diary. 

Avoiding interaction might initially feel easier, especially if you’re dealing with pain or difficult feelings from your injury. But sharing your experiences and communicating with those close to you is an incredibly valuable form of support – even if it firstly serves just as a distraction. 

Overview

Traumatic physical injury can happen to anyone. While care providers focus foremost on the treatments and medicines required to treat the bodily injury presented, the consequences on mental health can be overlooked. It’s essential for victims to seek professional medical and legal support wherever necessary.


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