If you get diagnosed with something that you know is going to change your life forever, the hidden impact will lie in your mentality. Whether it be cancer, heart disease, diabetes or even dementia, these life-altering conditions will no doubt play a part in deciding your future attitude. This is something that is not mentioned enough, because how we think about the world, and our place in it is also a vital part of who we are. When we get the bad news that we know is going to have an adverse effect on how we see the world and life itself for that matter, the fight to keep your chin up every day is immediately on. But being mentally able to cope with whatever you have to face, is the first thing many people in this kind of situation should be focussed on. Without the willpower and the undying need to succeed and live on for your children and friends, you won’t have the ability to go through long operations and even longer periods of medication. So to get in the right mind frame, you should be looking to do certain things.

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Make sure you’re correctly diagnosed.

Fully understanding what is going on with your body medically, will be the gun that sets the horses running. If you don’t know what the doctor might be trying to convey to you or you suspect that you may not fully understand the complex terms he or she is using, take a friend or family member with you. Making sure you have all the details, big and small, will give you the option of taking many different routes to recovery and not just one or two simple choices.

If you believe that you are not being properly cared for, and the diagnosis or the medication prescribed keeps being altered to something different, and you don’t feel as if there is any consistency in your care,  schedule a consultation with a medical malpractice lawyer. You have every right during this time, not to be taken for a ride and not simply passed on from doctor to doctor who gives you a different opinion and treatment options every time you go to the hospital. The legal staff will make sure you are compensated for any negligent behavior and see to it that you recover portions of your money paid for various consultations, diagnosis and surgery.  

Coming home and being the same

Whether you’ve just been diagnosed with something awful or you’re coming home from treatment, it’s imperative you don’t change your lifestyle drastically. Being told you can’t do certain things or that some parts of your life that you normally had are now off limits, can bring down the human spirit in your mind. We are a defiant species, and we try desperately not to let anything get us down to the point that we are no longer our normal selves. You should take pride in the fact that mentally, you don’t want your life to change in such a fashion that would change you as a person.

Try to live the same life you did, and you can do so, with the help of family members and friends. If you liked to go out and eat at restaurants but are in a wheelchair as part of your recovery, then don’t make do and eat inside, get dressed and go out like you normally would. If you played with your children in the back garden before your diagnosis and treatment, then don’t ever let anything change that. Life is precious, and even if you’re physically weak, your mental strength can bring you through shades of embarrassment. Continue to make an effort and play with your children as much as you can. Don’t let anything change you as a person, no matter how grave the illness or condition might be.

See your progress

One of the best ways to stay mentally healthy after surgery or being diagnosed with a life-changing condition is to see your own progress. Get yourself a calendar or a notebook which will help you log down your progress. From day one to the final day which may be weeks, months or a few years from now, you can physically see how well you have transformed. From being a weak and frail person to being able to eat solids again, or walk on your own, or maybe even go on that holiday you promised. Write down your day to day life and how you are feeling so that as you progress, you have detailed evidence that you are beginning to come out of a recovery and getting back to normal. This boosts morale and gives you the extra fight to carry on.

Never forget that your mental strength is that invisible power that you always have at your disposal. This power can bring you from a lowly position of pain and wanting to give up, to recovery and getting back on top of the horse again.

 

By Erica Buteau

Change Agent. Daydream Believer. Maker. Creative. Likes love, peace and Jeeping. Dislikes winter, paper cuts and war. She/Her/Hers.

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