Updated March 8, 2019
A traumatic brain injury could change your life forever. Even if you weren’t the one injured, your life likely won’t be the same, at least not right away. It can be hard to admit that you’re struggling to adapt to these changes, but rest assured that you’re not alone.
Just because you weren’t injured doesn’t mean your life wasn’t affected: Your family structure underwent an upheaval, there could be new communication and financial struggles, you may have less time to yourself, and you might not get the support you need to help your loved one heal.
However, there are some strategies for coping with life after a loved one’s injury that may help you adjust to your new routine. Whether it’s gentle reminders, modeling appropriate behavior, or repetition, these strategies for helping your loved one will require you to keep trying. Do your best to stay as positive as possible, avoid comparisons to how things “used to be,” and get whatever support both of you need.
Stress isn’t good for anyone. You can’t concentrate, stay organized, or think clearly if you’re stressed, and your relationships will suffer as a result. Even something as small as stopping by your favorite coffee shop or reading a chapter of a book can do wonders for your mood.
If you have a hard time justifying taking a break or relaxing, think of it as doing it for your injured loved one. You can’t care for others if you are burnt out.
Try to keep life as normal as possible while your loved one recovers to avoid frustration and keep any memory problems in check. Establish a daily routine and stick with it. Keep everything in its place. Include them in your family activities and conversations as naturally as you can. They are still a part of your family, and maintaining a more familiar structure will help their recovery.
Make sure your home is safe for your loved one. Keep clutter out of hallways and off of stairs, remove any objects that could cause tripping or falling, and keep everything well-lit. Dangerous and breakable objects should be moved, and medications should be locked in a cabinet or drawer.
Follow their doctor’s advice about taking care of them. If you feel unsafe as a result of their mood swings, avoid escalating the behavior and bring in outside help.
Your loved one may need to re-learn basic skills, such as eating, brushing their teeth, or even going to the restroom. Learning a new task may be a struggle for a person with a brain injury, and there might be some things that they can’t remember how to do. This situation can be very frustrating for both the injured person and their caregiver.
After a loved one’s traumatic brain injury, you and your family are probably feeling overwhelmed. Any big changes in a family can leave their mark, but a brain injury, in particular, can cause far-reaching changes.
You don’t have to go through this time alone. We can help. If you or a loved one have been injured as a result of a brain injury, contact the Indianapolis Brain Injury Attorneys of Wilson Kehoe Winingham. The lawyers at WKW can help you get the compensation you deserve. Call 317.920.6400 or fill out an online contact form for a free, no-obligation case evaluation.
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