How to cope during a spinal cord injury with family and friends?

Family and friends cope with stressful situations in different ways. What works for one person may not be helpful to another. We hope some of these ideas will help you get through this difficult time.

Advice for coping with a spinal cord injury

Express your feelings

Talk about your positive and negative feelings with family, friends, clergy, and members of the health care team.

Be kind to yourself 

Take time for a walk or have a meal with a friend. Also, try to leave the hospital for a meal or a restful night's sleep. By taking care of your own needs, you will be more ready to respond to the patient's needs.

When someone offers to help, accept the offer 

Try to be specific about how this person can help.

Write important information in a journal or notebook

Also try to keep records and information together in a file for easy reference.

Rotate family visitation 

If you need or want to leave the hospital, you may want to have someone stay with the patient so you can feel reassured they are not alone.

Last reviewed: 
March 2018

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