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When a loved one is involved in an accident or an attack that leads to a traumatic brain injury, it is hard to understand and accept the changes that inevitably occur. Accepting that the brain does not replenish cells and that certain memories are lost forever is hard, but it is also necessary to move forward and accept that individual despite the changes. Learning to accept the changes may take time, but it will provide the opportunity to continue caring and avoid unhealthy emotions.
Letting Go of Shock
The initial emotion that often arises when a traumatic brain injury occurs is shock. Loved ones do not expect the injury and do not know what to do with the emotions. A loved one is hurt and might not be able to take care of his or her needs. It is up to loved ones to step up and help, which means learning to let go of the emotions that will hold you back from taking necessary actions.
Recognize that the accident occurred. Accept the feelings of shock, despair and anger. Emotions are a natural response to the situation, but you do not want to allow those emotions to prevent you from reaching out for professional help to resolve the situation. Take deep breaths and let the emotions slide away.
Concentrate on the Current Needs of the Individual
Whether a traumatic brain injury occurred recently or a loved one is struggling to move forward and heal, the best way to accept the injury is focusing on the current needs and goals. Take the situation one step at a time.
Talk to the doctors involved in rehabilitation and concentrate on each step of recovery. Keep in mind that a loved one may not completely heal after a brain injury. Even a minor injury can have lasting effects via headaches, dizziness and forgetfulness. Larger injuries might mean physical disabilities or difficulty with daily tasks.
Focusing and concentrating on each day will make it possible to give a loved one the help he or she needs to reach for new goals and dreams. The injury may prevent certain actions, but it will not eliminate all of the possibilities.
Reaching for the Future
A brain injury does not necessarily mean that an individual will never have a positive life in the future. The brain is able to adapt to injuries and rewire information, so it is important to maintain hope that the future will always have positive aspects that will occur.
Rehabilitation after an injury is only the first step in recovering physical and mental abilities. Although lingering effects may last for a lifetime, the ability to reach for new heights is still a possibility. Whether the injury was small or large, it is possible to learn, grow, and develop. Maintain hope for the future while working through the challenges of the current situation. Accept the change of the individual and embrace the person who has has emerged from the injury.
A brain injury is not the loss of life, even if it is hard to move forward. The challenges ahead are hard, but it is possible to recover and enjoy a happy life even after an injury to the brain occurs.
TryMunity is a non-profit organization whose goal is to increase awareness and provide support for those affected by traumatic brain injury. You can follow TryMunity on Twitter.