Dipping Into Our Mental Reserves: Coping With A Long Hospital Stay

A key focus of my blog is Health/Wellness. It’s difficult to undergo a medical procedure in itself, but it can be more difficult when there is a prolonged stay in the hospital. Long stays in the hospital can create a different level of stress aside from the medical sickness itself and it’s important to understand how to cope under such circumstances. The following contributed post is thus entitled, Dipping Into Our Mental Reserves: Coping With A Long Hospital Stay.

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It can feel like when we spend a long period of time undergoing treatment, or feeling that we are living in a hospital, all self-respect goes out the window. It can mean a long tenure under harsh artificial lighting, wailing patients, surrounded by grimness, and just longing to be home. So how can we build up our mental reserves to cope?

Have A Plan
Structure is the key when we feel any sense of imprisonment. And we can argue that, in many ways, being in hospital for such a long time can result in feeling like we are trapped. But this is why, to ensure that our mental reserves are a strong as possible, that we stick to a structure. Think about things to occupy you during the day, but also, ensure that you address your moments of weakness. By having a plan in mind, this serves you well by occupying your mind, but also gives you the chance to look to the future. You would be quite surprised as to how much a structure can give you a sense of focus.

Seek Support
When we feel guilt, or anger, it’s about ensuring we get some form of outlet. Depending on the situation that you are in hospital in the first place, you may have a lot of resentment because of the situation. It’s important that if you seek closure, or you feel that it’s not a chapter that will close itself, that you seek the appropriate help. This could be legal representation, such as Frekhtman & Associates, or it could be any counselor. Whatever is necessary, you should think about seeking support, because this is what will keep your morale up.

Understanding Your Grief And Stress
In a stressful time, we’re going through periods of uncertainty, and we need to learn that what we’re going through is, although it doesn’t feel like it, normal. When surrounded by people in a hospital environment that are going through life or death situations, and feeling that we are in a warzone of some proportion, realizing that we have these feelings of stress and anxiety means that it’s the first step towards seeking appropriate help and treatment. When it comes to extreme emotions and thoughts, you need to speak to a professional. For those that have depressive episodes, this is normal, and when you feel like this, it’s important to remember that these emotions are fleeting, but what you can do in the meantime is learn to either channel these emotions into something positive or get over the symptomatic feelings of stress. Fight or flight is a very common emotion, especially when faced with our own mortality. And in some respects, this sense of adrenaline can get us through a stressful situation, but as we know, in the modern world, feeling like this all of the time will only deplete our energy stores. And this is where you have to seek out your own form of treatment. A lot of people talk about mindfulness as a very positive practice, as is meditation, but have you ever tried to sit there and think of nothing? When you’re feeling stressed, it’s impossible! So instead, harness the power of deep breathing, because this can give you control over your nervous system, meaning that as you build up your stores, you can learn to tackle all the negativity in your mind.

It’s a veritable collection of ups and downs, and when we are undergoing long-term treatment or spending time in hospital, you can feel like it will never end. But this is where we have to dip into our mental reserves and learn how to build them up.

Author: anwaryusef

Anwar Y. Dunbar is a Regulatory Scientist. Being a naturally curious person, he is also a student of all things. He earned his Ph.D. in Pharmacology from the University of Michigan and his Bachelor’s Degree in General Biology from Johnson C. Smith University (JCSU). Prior to starting the Big Words Blog Site, Anwar published and contributed to numerous research articles in competitive scientific journals reporting on his research from graduate school and postdoctoral years. After falling in love with writing, he contributed to the now defunct Examiner.com, and the Edvocate where he regularly wrote about: Education-related stories/topics, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), Financial Literacy; as well as conducted interviews with notable individuals such as actor and author Hill Harper. Having many influences, one of his most notable heroes is author, intellectual and speaker, Malcolm Gladwell, author of books including Outliers and David and Goliath. Anwar has his hands in many, many activities. In addition to writing, Anwar actively mentors youth, works to spread awareness of STEM careers, serves on the Board of Directors of the Friends of the David M. Brown Arlington Planetarium, serves as Treasurer for the JCSU Washington, DC Alumni Chapter, and is active in the Dave Ramsey Financial Peace Ministry at the Alfred Street Baptist Church. He also tutors in the subjects of biology, chemistry and physics. Along with his multi-talented older brother Amahl Dunbar (designer of the Big Words logos, inventor and a plethora of other things), Anwar is a “Fanboy” and really enjoys Science-Fiction and Superhero movies including but not restricted to Captain America Civil War, Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice, and Prometheus. He is a proud native of Buffalo, NY.

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