Psychological Counseling After a Spinal Cord Injury
By Michael Verna on February 28, 2018
Many people discuss the physical changes brought on by spinal cord injuries, but a person’s mental health is also affected. The changes to your life can be immense, which contributes to the psychological toll of these injuries. People who are paralyzed often feel distraught over the loss of the use of limbs, and the inability to perform daily tasks without assistance. This can be a major strain on one’s emotional state.
The attorneys of Bowles & Verna have helped numerous people in the Oakland, CA area who’ve suffered from a catastrophic spinal cord injury. We’d like to focus on the mental toll of these injuries and how seeing a counselor or mental health specialist can help.
Depression After a Spinal Cord Injury
Given the severity of these kinds of catastrophic injuries, it should come as no surprise that many spinal cord injury victims develop depression. It’s estimated that anywhere between 11 percent to 37 percent of spinal cord injury victims suffer from depression. This could manifest itself in low feelings of self-worth to feelings of hopelessness.
Whatever form your depression takes, please know that you are not alone and there is help available for what you are going through.
Signs of Depression
Some of the key signs of depression include:
- Changes in sleep pattern
- Changes in appetite
- Fatigue or low energy
- Loss of pleasure in various activities
- Feelings of total hopelessness
- Mental fogginess
- Difficulty making decisions
- Ideations of suicide
Therapy Offers a Space to Vent and Share
A therapist is here to listen to you and help process the problems you are going through. There is no judgment, only compassion and understanding. A therapist can give you space to vent, and to discuss the frustrations you’re going through regarding the changes in your life and how it may be affecting your self-confidence and interpersonal relationships.
Therapy Can Help You Cope with Change
A therapist can also help you develop coping mechanisms for the difficulties you’re going through. The therapist can also help guide you through your struggles and offer different perspectives on what pain or hopelessness you may be feeling.
Talking your way through problems with a skilled professional is essential for anyone going through a major hardship in life. A therapist can help you alter destructive patterns of thinking and behavior, helping you reconsider your struggles in a different way.
Damages in Legal Cases Can Cover the Cost of Counseling
In a civil lawsuit, you may sue a negligent party for damages. Compensatory damages are sought to cover the financial losses associated with your injury. In addition to the cost of physical therapy, damages in a spinal cord injury case can also cover the cost of mental health services.
Helping You Adjust to Your Life Ahead
There are going to be a number of challenges and changes in your life, but regular visits with a counselor for mental health services can be immensely helpful. Do not feel ashamed or any stigma about seeing a counselor. It can be part of your regular routine of healing and moving forward.
Speak with Skilled Spinal Cord Injury Attorneys
If you or someone you love has been in a serious accident and suffered a spinal cord injury, be sure to contact our team of catastrophic injury lawyers. The legal team at Bowles & Verna is here to help you in your time of legal need.