The process of healing: Post-injury therapy and rehabilitation

We live in a relatively safe world. Progress in healthcare has seen an increase in the life expectancy of people around the globe, while improved access to hygiene and sanitation has made many illnesses that were serious threats to human life in the past a distant problem. The latest developments have meant that new medication appears, meaning that chronic diseases can be managed so as not to impact the patients’ daily activities and quality of life. Scientific progress is constantly discovering new opportunities and possibilities to treat previously thought to be incurable conditions.

The growth of technology has also meant that people don’t have to work in hazardous conditions as much. Ventilation systems can purify the air of pollutants, special gear protects the body and limbs from injury, and companies are turning towards greener and more ecologically sustainable materials. The rise of computers, robotics and artificial intelligence means that workers no longer have to expose themselves to many of the common dangers that existed in the past. Instead, they can just operate a machine to do it for them. 

However, improved safety doesn’t equal complete security. Accidents still exist, and while they may happen at a slower rate, their impact is no less destructive. At best, an injury can cause minor discomfort but will essentially heal on its own. At worst, however, wounds can last a long amount of time and might result in permanent disability. Prompt treatment is necessary in both cases to reduce the probability of long-term impairment and the follow-up therapy scheme. 

Rice it

The most effective first step when you’ve suffered an injury due to playing sports, whether in the gym or while playing footie, rugby or hockey, is the Rice strategy. This plan of action is an acronym for “rest, ice, compression and elevation”, a list of steps you should take in order to diminish swelling and reduce pain. Use it as often as practical after sustaining a wound. Both acute and chronic conditions respond well to this basic treatment, so you can use it if you’re a seasoned athlete. 

Use an elastic bandage to compress the area (biker shorts and tights work as well if you’re dealing with a shortage of bandages around the house), and try to keep the afflicted area elevated above heart level. This facilitates improved blood circulation and reduces oedema. And just because the therapy includes the word “rest”, don’t assume that complete rest is necessarily beneficial. As a rule, you should avoid strenuous or intensive activity, but getting some movement in can be helpful. It helps reduce inflammation and keep fluid accumulation in the tissue at bay, speeding the recovery process. 

Take your medication

Medicine courses are usually a pain. You have to take them under a strict schedule so as to avoid unwanted interactions or the drugs cancelling out each other’s benefits. If you have a large treatment scheme, you may struggle to remember everything, which can be problematic as skipping your medicine can adversely affect your healing rates. Your physician will prescribe a specific dosage that is appropriate to take over a certain period of time, and failing to follow the process minutely usually results in obstructed or incomplete healing. 

The most common medication prescribed following injuries is anti-inflammatory drugs. Inflammation is a natural process resulting from the strain put on the bones, muscles or joints, but in large amounts, it can also contribute to aggravating the damage. That’s where the medication comes in to help assuage the effects. Painkillers are also a common choice, as the aches accompanying accident-related injuries can be severe enough to hinder your regular day-to-day activities and quality of life. 

However, you should refrain from becoming overly reliant on medication. Only take as much as your doctor prescribes for the predetermined amount of time. If you have any concerns that the treatment is not working well enough and you’d require something more potent, talk to your physician so you can pick a new treatment scheme that works better. 

Make an injury claim

Some injuries are the direct result of the negligence of a third party. The accidents can happen in the workplace, in public, or on the road, and their effects can range from mild to severe. No matter which one fits your situation, you are within your rights to make a personal injury claim that sees you obtain the justice you deserve. You can get free advice from Personal Injury Claims UK on what laying a claim entails by talking to a professional attorney that can help you get to the bottom of your case. Given how each situation is different, you will get a customised approach, not a standard, one-size-fits-all attitude. 

You’ll have to assemble a file of evidence that’ll enable you to put forward a strong case that’ll get the court’s attention and maximise your chances of having a positive outcome. For example, your solicitor may recommend that you provide photographic evidence of the place of the accident, as well as your injuries. You’ll have to hold on to receipts, invoices or bills in order to prove substantial financial losses or hardship you have come to as a result of being injured. 

If you’ve sustained physical damage, you’ll likely have a lot on your plate, focusing on your bodily and mental recovery. Let an expert take care of the legal aspect of your situation, so you get one burden off your shoulders. 

Trust the process 

There is no predetermined way to measure the effectiveness of a form of rehabilitation. Be it medication or physiotherapy, success rates are dependent on your ability and determination to commit. Other features, such as your fitness level and bone density, can also impact your progress. Suffering from a chronic illness such as diabetes or asthma is likely to slow the process, as your immune system is likely to be damaged due to the condition. There’s no easy way out, and you’ll have to take it step by step. However, that doesn’t mean you should despair. Although healing may seem elusive and far away, with consistent effort, you’ll start seeing progress before long.

Nathaniel Villa
Nathaniel Villa