After an injury, the primary focus is always on physical healing and understandably so because it can be the difference between life and death.
However, some injuries will do more than physical harm to cause significant damage to your mental health too. This is especially true if the physical injury interferes with your ability to earn a living or offers your life significantly, for example, when it results in losing a body part or disfigurement.
If you feel like your mental health is at risk when recovering from an injury, this guide is an excellent read for tips on your steps.
Acknowledge Your Emotions
The first weeks or months after an injury can be quite difficult. You will be looking at a changed life, sometimes in a huge way, and you can expect to have feelings of grief, regret, denial, anger, and depression.
These feelings are part of the healing process. They will fade away with time if you take the right approach. So allow yourself time to come to terms with what has happened.
Maintain a Positive Mindset
Acknowledging your emotions doesn’t mean that you follow them whatever they lead you. You must stay in control by maintaining a positive mindset. Learn to celebrate the progress you make. It may not be as much as you wish, but every step is progress.
It is also essential to consider another person who may have it worse than you. You can find inspiration for a positive mindset by listening to podcasts, reading books, and watching videos of people in similar situations who rose from it.
Mental distress after an injury usually results from the fact that some injuries will rob the patient of the enjoyment of the convenience they got from engaging in some activity. So finding help getting back on your feet will be a big step towards regaining control of your mental well-being, and it starts with getting physical therapy.
When choosing a physical therapist, you want to be sure they are registered, experienced, and conveniently located. You also have to consider their fees. Different physical therapists handle physical therapy invoicing differently, so you may want to check out different care providers and compare costs.
When you are healthy, you may not have much of a problem getting social since you’ll be meeting people in the office in the gym or for drinks after work. But all these changes after severe injuries can leave you in seclusion in a hospital or at home.
The seclusion creates the perfect opportunity for sliding into mental problems. So ensure you seek support from your community, starting with your family, friends or support groups.
There are situations where you may need to seek help from a mental health professional. For example, when you feel your situation is beyond what you can handle alone.
Find a New Hobby
If your injury requires you to spend substantial time away from the things you love, it is best you look for alternative activities. For example, if you are athletic but your injuries render you unable to engage in physical activity, you could consider video gaming.
While it may not give you the same experience as the activity, it can offer some enjoyment and take your mind off your situation. Books are also a good way of passing the time and focusing on something else rather than your injuries.
Some injuries can allow you some level of exercise. For example, an arm injury will limit arm movement, but you can still walk if you do it safely and follow your doctor’s recommendations. Exercising lowers stress levels, so get as much of it as possible.