Accidents can happen to you anywhere and at any time. In many cases, personal injuries occur due to several factors including reckless, negligent or intentional behavior.
Whether accidents are medical mistakes, sports injuries, car or workplace accidents, accidents can severely impact your mental, physical and financial health, and send you on an emotional roller coaster. These emotions can range from grief to frustration, anger, confusion, sadness, hope, melancholy and even excitement.
Dealing with physical injuries and the emotional turbulence can lead to stress, preventing you from fully recovering.
Understanding personal injuries
Personal injury legally means an injury suffered by an individual body, emotions and mind due to someone else’s carelessness or negligence. Under the law it’s called tort law or personal injury law.
How to deal with personal injuries
Many people, especially after a traffic accident, experience post-traumatic stress. Symptom of PTSD include;
- Ongoing feeling of uneasiness
- The anxiety of riding in or driving a car
- Refusing to get medical tests or even procedures
- Trouble sleeping, nightmares and flashbacks
- Excessive worry, irritability or anger
It is important to seek support to help you go through this stressful time. The support includes;
Seek proper medical attention to assess and stabilize any physical damage. Bruises and scrapes may heal without frequent doctor check-ups, but more serious injuries such as head and spinal injuries, fractures and internal organ damage require frequent medical attention.
Delaying and avoiding medical treatment may aggravate and worsen the injuries, causing infections and prolonging recovery. Thus, before you seek any other forms of support, medical support should be your first port of call.
Personal injuries can leave you with emotional and physical scars.
While slight physical injuries heal fast, severe injuries can take ages, or they may cause permanent, life-long disabilities. Regardless of the extent of the injury, you will need social support from family members and friends. This is especially necessary if you become disabled or are in constant pain and can’t undertake your daily chores.
Family, community and friends should come together to help where possible. Social support is instrumental in helping and widening a victim’s focus outwards, staving depression, isolation and loss of positive self-image.
Remember, medical treatment caters to just a fraction of healing, but with strong social support, your healing process is faster and less stressful.
Accidents lead to death, physical, and property damage.
It is vital to seek legal assistance through a personal injury lawyer to protect your interest. By allowing your legal team to handle the personal injury claims, you reduce the stress and focus on healing.
After an accident, many victims experience financial setbacks. You need to cater for your medical and living expenses, which can be overwhelming, especially in severe cases.
The case may become complicated if you are the sole breadwinner, or have many dependents. Do not shy from seeking financial assistance, such as disability and welfare support. It will reduce your stress levels and promote faster healing.
Laughter triggers emotional and physical changes, boosts your mood, strengthens the immune system, and reduces pain. This helps to bring your body and mind back to balance.
More so, laughter inspires hope, lightens your burdens and keeps you focused on the positive. Laughter also releases anger.
Be proactive in creating laughing opportunities.Watch stand-up comedy online, watch comedy TV shows, read books and invite your funny friend over.
Stress lowers the immune system and creates muscle tension in our bodies, thus impacting our ability to heal fast. However, practicing relaxation:
- Reduces blood pressure
- Slows your breathing and heart rate
- Relieves tension
- Lowers stress hormones
- Relaxes the muscles
- Increases your immune response
- Lowers your blood sugar
- Reduces inflammation
Additionally, relaxing aids digestion, thus enabling the body to absorb the essential nutrients needed for recovery and fighting infections.
Lastly, relaxing helps to quiet your mind
Visualization allows you to remove and disconnect from your current situation and negative emotions and instead places your attention on the positive action needed to achieve success – in this case, healing.
In addition, visualization enables you to think of something you want, then perceive it and believe in it and work toward achieving. Visualization also;
- Increases motivation
- Defines you wants and needs
- Increases positive thoughts
- Optimizes your thought process
Adjust your goals
Recognizing that your expectations and goals may not be the same as before the injury is an important step in reducing stress.
It is also important to manage your expectations. Recovery can be slow, and you will probably have to deal with numerous setbacks from medical to financial and legal.
That said, adjusting your plans and goals can prevent you from creating more stress. This doesn’t mean you have failed. You are simply working within your new parameters, and allowing your body and mind time to heal.
Additionally, adapting keeps your goals alive and on the path.
Proper nutrition and taking care of your general health is essential when dealing with personal injuries.
However, worrying about getting the exact calories, protein, vitamins, and other nutrients can lead to undue stress. In turn, this can hamper your healing process.
Request your doctor for healthy eating guidelines that will improve your overall health. You may also consult a nutritionist to assist you in crafting a dietary plan that best aids recovery.
Patience for an injured person is an everyday essential and the key to a happy life and smooth recovery.
This means being able to calmly wait in the face of the pain, adversity and frustration that can occur after an accident.
Patience is the difference between serenity and annoyance, tranquility and worry, harmony and strife in your home.
Embracing patience enables you to;
- Gain better mental health
- Become better parents, neighbors, friends and family members
- Achieve your goals, regardless of the progress and timeline
- Get better sleep, thus improving health and healing time
To cultivate patience;
Reframe your situation
Feeling impatient can delay healing since your mind is consciously activating negative beliefs and thoughts. However, practicing patience enables you to consciously practice self-control, regardless of the outcome.
For example, if the doctors extend your bedrest for another month and you have goals to achieve, you may fume and lose control. But when you apply patience, you will realize that the doctor has your best interests at heart, and therefore, take the advice positively.
Practice mindfulness and gratitude
Regardless of the outcome after the accident, learn to acknowledge your feelings and be grateful you are still breathing.
Be mindful of those taking care of you by acknowledging their hard work and sacrifice. Be thankful for their service, even when they attend to you late or slowly.
Final thoughts on dealing with personal injuries during stressful times
Proactively working to recover from personal injuries is the key to healing and enjoying your life again. Follow the above points to train your body and mind to readjust and regain control of the situation by shifting your focus to healing and what is achievable during the recuperating period.
Avoid getting consumed with things you can’t do or missing out on, and embrace the process. Injury recovery is an opportunity to emerge mentally and physically stronger.