Suffering a severe or catastrophic injury is a life-changing event that devastates victims and their families. The aftermath of the injury includes physical, emotional, and financial consequences that make it difficult for victims to return to life as normal. No amount of money will undo the damage caused by a severe accident, but money can help reduce or eliminate the financial burden associated with catastrophic injuries that require lifelong treatment or care. If you are not already suing for damages, you need to contact an attorney immediately to find out more about receiving compensation for your injury.
This blog focuses on the physical and emotional effects of a serious injury, aspects a successful settlement or court-awarded damages can’t really help. Injury victims, especially those who have scars, have lost body parts, or have had to undergo an amputation, deal with as much mental pain as physical pain, and often suffer with depression and remain angry about their condition. If this describes you or a loved one, you need to contact a mental health professional in the Seattle area as soon as possible. You don’t have to spend your days angry and depressed.
Although you may live with certain aspects of your injury, you can optimize your health by supporting your body’s natural capability to self-repair after severe injuries and illness. Below you will find some tips and suggestions to help you cope and move past the physical and emotional struggles that accompany sustaining a life-changing injury.
Recognize the Link Between the Physical and the Emotional
If you have suffered a serious injury, you might have chronic pain. Perhaps you have back pain, knee pain, or phantom pain from an amputation. Regardless of the pain you are experience, the old cliche—mind over matter—applies.
Research on pain suggests victims can learn to feel pain after experiencing pain, and when they fear or anticipate pain, they feel more pain. When you come into contact with the situation that led to your injury, such as a car accident, an unintentional fall, or a workplace accident, it’s not uncommon to fear another accident and feel additional pain. Chronic pain is no joke, and you should be communicating with your doctor about effective pain management, but part of that strategy should include overcoming your fear of pain.
Engage in Rational Thought
After a severe injury, you most likely have had well-meaning friends and family tell you to think positively, look on the bright side, and other unhelpful things to blow some sunshine your way. The power of positive self-talk can be helpful for some, but many psychologists prefer to focus on rational and realistic thought through the implementation of Rational Emotive Behavioral Therapy (REBT) principles. REBT seeks to transform victims by helping them change the things they tell themselves about their injuries. Some examples of transformative thoughts that might be useful to you include:
- The accident that led to my injury is not my fault.
- Others have experienced severe injuries and also have limitations.
- I refuse to let my limitations ruin my life.
- I will make an effort to restore my career and my personal relationships.
- I will attempt to make meaningful contributions to my community despite my limitations.
For some, physical pain is not only a reminder of an injury, but a reminder of the assistance and extra care needed invoking feelings of weakness. Engaging in rational thought through therapies like REBT, help victims cope with anger, accept their limitations, and lead a full life.
Eat Nutritious Meals
It’s likely that you know you should consume a healthy diet, but sometimes we don’t do what’s best for our health. After sustaining a severe injury, there is no better time to focus on what you put in your body. Vitamins and minerals found in unprocessed foods may promote healing and recovery. Including these things in your diet will help you optimize your health so you feel the best you can feel despite any disability or pain. For example, vitamin A may promote the healing of skin and bones, vitamin C may help repair connective tissue through the formation of collagen, and the enzymes found in pineapple may reduce swelling, bruising, and pain after injury and surgery.
Eating healthy also includes avoiding a lot of starch and sugar, and drinking plenty of water. Sugary foods give you temporary energy, but cause you to crash so you feel worse. Drinking water flushes the toxins out of your system and keeps your joints lubricated. When you eat healthy most of the time—we all need a little birthday cake, some homemade pasta, a glass of wine, or a beer on occasion—you will find you are more energetic, helping to fight off some of the depression you might feel after a serious injury.
Make Exercise Part of Your Daily Routine
As much as you need your rest for healing and recovery, you also need to keep moving to the best of your ability. Some injuries might prevent regular exercise, so you should discuss your limitations with your doctor. In most cases, you can do some sort of activity to get your heart rate going and build your strength. If the benefits of exercise could be extracted into a liquid or pill, people would rush their doctors for a prescription.
You probably know the physical benefits of exercise, but did you know that activity also promotes healing? Physical activity affects hemostasis, the body’s physiological response to bleeding and the first step of wound healing. Additionally, exercise promotes collagen formation, helping soft tissues heal, improves the healing of bones, muscles, tendons, and ligaments, and decreases the formation of scar tissue. Finally, exercise helps combat anxiety and depression that a victim might experience after an injury, improving one’s overall mental health.
Contact Boohoff Law’s Skilled Seattle Personal Injury Lawyer Today
If you or a loved one has suffered a severe or catastrophic injury after an accident, Washington law entitles you to sue for damages in civil court if your injury was a result of another party’s negligence or intent to harm you. Let an experienced personal injury attorney handle the details of your case while you focus on recovery, rehabilitation, and living with your injury. Contact Boohoff Law online or call our Seattle office at (877) 999-9999 to schedule a free consultation and learn how we can assist you after a severe injury.