No family is ever completely ready to take care of a loved one who has suffered a brain injury. Regardless of the cause, plans must be made to tend to the person’s needs and to do what is in his or her best interest. One of the most important things a family can do is to remember that they are not alone. Many resources exist to help family members integrate their loved one back into the home.
The days after the injury occurs are grueling. The first few days are filled with uncertainty as many tests are administered and your loved one is evaluated by different types of doctors. When the patient is in the intensive care unit (ICU), hospital rules often do not allow frequent or lengthy visitation. It is important to take advantage of this to keep yourself well. Although you may want to be at your loved one’s bedside, you have a long haul in front of you. That’s why the Brain Injury Association of America says that “Brain injury rehabilitation is a marathon and not a sprint.”
Many families find it helpful to start a notebook to share information. As information comes in or questions are presented, these can be recorded in the notebook.
After the person’s condition has stabilized, rehabilitation begins. As the victim’s limitations become clearer, he or she may become frustrated by those limitations, by setbacks, or by a lack of progress. Many family members often become frustrated or sad at this time also, as they start to see their loved one’s post-injury abilities.
It is wise to open a discussion with the medical team about support the loved one will need after discharge from the hospital. Every brain injury is unique, so planning should be tailored to the needs of your loved one. Here are some areas often faced by brain injury survivors:
- inability to organize or plan;
- memory problems;
- inability to focus;
- behavioral issues;
- confusion; and
- poor judgment.
Fortunately, there are many steps family members can take to help reduce the effects of these limitations.
If you or a loved one suffered a brain injury in an accident, contact the San Francisco personal injury attorneys at Alexander Law Group, LLP right away at 888.777.1776. We have decades of experience representing brain injury victims and their families. Call now: Delay could harm your case.