A serious car accident is a traumatic experience. The physical ramifications of your injuries may be grueling, and the emotional ordeal you’ve been through and what you’ll endure during recovery can also put you through the wringer. In this situation, it’s hard to maintain neutral thinking, and it’s understandable that you’re going to feel upset and worried at times. However, taking a few purposeful steps to support your recuperation can lift your outlook and may help you make good progress. Here are a few simple but practical strategies for navigating your recovery.
1. Be Patient and Resilient
After sustaining a serious injury in a motor vehicle accident, people commonly tend to want a quick fix to get themselves back where they used to be physically. However, you have to be realistic about your expectations. In many instances, surgery isn’t the right first-line treatment. It’s always best to exhaust noninvasive treatments such as physical therapy before resorting to a surgical procedure that carries multiple risks. Likewise, surgery usually isn’t a silver bullet for a serious injury. Most orthopedic surgeries involve lengthy recovery times and grueling physical therapy regimens.
Ultimately, you have to accept that fully recuperating isn’t going to happen overnight. Be patient with yourself, and be ready to work towards progress gradually. Each small measure of improvement will motivate you to continue building on that progress.
2. Make Rest a Priority
Your body does some of its most important work to repair itself and help you heal when you’re asleep. Furthermore, it needs that time at rest so you can recharge for the day ahead.
When you’re experiencing pain and discomfort, it can be extremely disruptive to your sleep cycle. You have to account for this in your pre-bed ritual, and consider turning in a little bit earlier. Also, it may be helpful to sleep later to squeeze in some extra time for rest. Prepping some of the things that you have to do the next day before you turn in could be a good strategy for streamlining your morning routine.
However, try to avoid getting your sleep cycle too far removed from your usual habits. Being consistent about getting to sleep at the same time and waking around the same time every day makes both falling asleep and rousing yourself in the morning come more naturally to you.
3. Take Time Away From Work When You Need It
After an injury, people frequently make the mistake of rushing back to their regular work routine before they’ve had adequate time to heal. Overstraining yourself could lengthen your healing times, exacerbate inflammation, or even lead to more serious setbacks.
Use any time off that you have available. If you have short-term disability benefits, don’t be reluctant to make a claim because you’re worried that the compensation will be too far below your usual pay rate. Find out about your benefits before you dismiss the option.
Ultimately, recovering from an injury is going to take a serious, concerted effort, but don’t get discouraged. Prioritize your self-care and stay committed to your recovery.