Suffering a brain injury can be catastrophic for the victim, but these injuries can also have a massive impact on the lives of their loved ones. Damage to the brain can mean a lot of changes for the individual affected, including requiring ongoing care, changes to personality and mood, and in some cases, permanent disability. Knowing how to support victims can be a challenge, and it is easy to be overwhelmed and confused. In case you faced traumatic brain injury contact our brain injury law firm for help.
There tends to be an assumption that once the victim is home from the hospital, their lives will resume as usual – particularly if there are no outward, physical consequences. Sadly, this is usually far from the case, and many sufferers will require ongoing support and assistance to help them manage in everyday life.
What Can I Do to Help?
You may think that unless you are medically trained or specially qualified, that there is little you can do to help. There are, however, small changes you can make to support a friend or family member, and make life after a brain injury more manageable.
What Do You Know?
Education is a great place to start and will enable you to gain a better understanding of the condition. Not all brain injuries are the same, so make sure that you talk to the victim to gain an insight into their personal situation. This offers a chance to develop support strategies and will allow you to understand and empathize.
Can Anyone Else Help?
In some cases, it may benefit victims of TBI’s to meet others in the same position – this can be a great place to find support from those who really understand. See if there is a place like this for your loved one, and explore the options available. Make sure that they are aware of the possibilities they have, and support them to attend meetings and groups if they desire.
What about Practical Help?
Sometimes practical help is the most useful gift you can give. Whether it is picking children up from school or running errands, setting reminders and sending regular emails, or being them to help fill in a form, there are plenty of practical ways you can offer assistance. Sufferers often have issues with their memory, so make sure you are on hand to provide a helpful reminder and understand that you may have to repeat yourself on occasion.
What About When We Are Out and About?
Sometimes, your loved one may be anxious about socializing and getting out and about amongst groups of friends. They may become tired or overstimulated more quickly, be worried about forgetting things, or find their symptoms are worsened by alcohol. Here again, you can be a shoulder of support. Ask if they would like you to brief the group on their condition or simply act as a quiet observer? Try and find situations for social occasions which allow them to move at their own pace and feel comfortable, and follow their lead on discussing the injury. Simply being there can be a real help and allow and encourage them to develop confidence and renewed enthusiasm over time.