You can make all the plans you want for your life, but don’t be surprised when a curveball comes your way. In many cases, these curveballs can completely derail your lifestyle. The only thing that is predictable about life is its unpredictability, and few things are more difficult to handle than a traumatic physical injury.
In an instant, your whole life can change. One minute, you have a body that is working in perfect condition, and the next, you are suffering from lifelong disability. These moments can be incredibly traumatic, making it difficult to move on and accept the changes to your lifestyle. If there is no hope of total recovery, then the emotional damage is even more severe.
Learning to adapt to a new lifestyle after a physical injury is challenging but necessary. Even if recovery is possible, it may take a long time, and you will have to be patient. It is important to follow the steps laid out by your doctor to adjust to your body’s new needs. Here are a few tips to help you deal with these traumatic physical injuries.
Don’t Push Past Your Limits
A bad injury is very disruptive. Perhaps you are missing a lot of time at work, or you want to get back to enjoying the activities you normally engage in. This creates a temptation to push yourself beyond the limits to heal quickly. However, doing so would be a huge mistake. The damaged areas of your body are not yet ready to carry that load, and rushing them back into it could lead to a new injury or an aggravation of the old one. Understand what your new limits are, and do not push beyond them. Otherwise, your recovery time could double and force you to maintain this new lifestyle for much longer than you thought.
Prioritize Emotional Recovery
Physical recovery is crucial when you have suffered from a major injury, but it is not the only aspect of wellness to think about. For example, maybe you are navigating lifestyle changes after a car accident. You have lost mobility in your legs and will be in a wheelchair for a while. This change can be devastating from an emotional standpoint. Perhaps this will be the first time that you prioritize your mental health. A support group or therapist could be a vital resource when you are dealing with grief from the loss of your previous lifestyle. Seek professional help to find an outlet for your emotional frustrations so that you do not take it out on your family or friends.
Seek Financial Solutions
In many cases, traumatic injuries will cause strain on your finances. Perhaps the medical costs are very high, and your insurance does not cover everything. Maybe you are missing time at work and have no income as a result. However, you still need to pay the bills and look out for your family. There are several solutions to consider. If the injury occurred at work, you probably can claim worker’s compensation benefits. For incidents that were caused by the negligence of another party, a personal injury lawsuit could earn you fair compensation to cover damages. If you are a veteran and the injury is service-related, then you could look into VA disability claims, which grant tax-free monthly payments to injured or ill veterans. Whatever the nature of your injury and what caused it, there could be financial resources to put your mind at ease in the aftermath.
Lean on Your Closest Support Circles
Traumatic physical injuries also affect the ones we love most. Often, your family members and close friends will bear the brunt of the impact that is caused by your new lifestyle. Perhaps your physical needs are greater, and they are the only ones who can provide for them. This can often lead to guilt because you feel like a burden to them. However, in most cases, these inner circles are more than willing to help you adjust. Even if there is no burden on your loved ones, you should still lean on them for emotional support. These are the people who love you the most and know you the best in the world, so it is important to have this emotional support in your life after a traumatic injury.
Focus on the Positive to Find a New Normal
This may be the most difficult aspect of suffering from a severe injury. You may be forced to find a new normal. This can take time, especially if the injury has completely changed your lifestyle. However, if you can focus on the positives and follow the strategies listed above, then you should be able to find a new normal and get back to enjoying your life, even if it looks different from your original plans.