Taking Part in Managing Your Rehab
Happy New Year to our clients!
Many people take the new year as an opportunity to set new goals and make new resolutions for themselves. This may (or may not) always go as planned.
In preparation for 2019, we have compiled a list of tips and strategies to help our clients with progressing with rehabilitation goals:
1. Maintain Consistency – Remember to keep your routine consistent. Whether its Physiotherapy or social outings with friends, routines help to keep us grounded and healthy. This applies not only to your daily routine, but also at home with organization. Keeping a routine (My physio is every Tuesday and Thursday, or my cleaning supplies are under my sink) can help reduce anxiety, stress, and confusion. Brainline.org is a very helpful website to gather this type of information.
2. Manage your Schedule – This goes hand in hand with “consistency”. Being able to maintain a schedule will keep you organized and allow you to ensure that your work, personal and therapy appointments are balanced. It will also ensure you are working towards your goals, not against them.
Remember to use methods that work for you such as a calendar visible at home, a day planner or your smartphone.
Planning your day may seem overwhelming while dealing with pain, fatigue, or unexpected challenges. Here is a great link to gain some tips from a survivor who may be able to relate to what you are currently going through.
3. Self Advocate – Be involved in your healthcare and therapy. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and advocate for yourself. It is very important to become an active member of YOUR rehabilitation! Your life, your goals, big or small…be sure to communicate them to your team. There are many community resources available to survivors and families. Many resources can be accessed through local brain injury associations including Brain Injury Association of Peel and Halton (BIAPH), Brain Injury Society of Toronto (BIST), Brain Injury Community Re-entry (BICR) and Ontario Brain Injury Association (OBIA). Ask your therapy team on how to get involved advocating for yourself and others.
4. Healthy Nutrition –Nutrition plays an even more vital role when you are recovering from an injury. We know that cognitive processing declines without fuel, eating small frequent meals with snacks may help to keep on track throughout the day. The addition of prebiotics, probiotics, foods high in antioxidants, whole foods and supplements may also help. Talk to your doctor or nutritionist about making sure your body is getting what it needs.
5. Improve Sleep – Over 50% of people experience sleep disturbances after a traumatic brain injury (TBI). Individuals with TBI tend to have poorer sleep efficiency, shorter sleep duration and less time in REM sleep (www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4773614/). Getting enough sleep is important in your recovery and rehabilitation. When we sleep our bodies restore immune, nervous, skeletal and muscular systems. It is also vital to maintaining mood, memory and cognitive function. Talk to your team about sleep hygiene.
These are just a few strategies to think about for the coming year. We hope they can help. Please remember to talk to your rehabilitation and health care team to tailor your goals and routines to maximize your recovery.
Have questions or need help? Contact us at 416-449-6466.