102 – 90 Garry St. Winnipeg, MB R3C 4H1 - Phone: (204) 478-6644, Fax: 204-478-6677 - info@indep.ca

Posts Tagged ‘rehabilitation’

6 Ways To Assist Injured Loved Ones With Their Recoveries

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Rear view of trainer assisting senior woman with her walker over white backgroundOvercoming an injury is no easy feat. And it can be especially difficult if you’re doing so alone. The help and support of family members and friends play a crucial role in the recovery of an individual who has experienced a significant injury. Arguably, one’s emotional state needs as much rehabilitation as his or her physical condition after being injured. The negative impacts of an injury are many. So the more help one gets towards recovery, the better.

At Independence Incorporated, we offer a Personal Care Needs Assessment that includes the help of registered nurses and occupational therapists. Together, they provide comprehensive assessments of the personal care needs of their clients. That way, those impacted by injuries are provided with the best possible paths towards recovery. Of course, that doesn’t mean they don’t need additional assistance from their loved ones.

Here are six ways to assist injured loved ones with their recoveries:

1. Spend some quality time. Injured loved ones can develop overwhelming senses of loneliness since they are usually unable to participate in regular everyday activities. Since they generally won’t be able to come to you, it’s important that you find some time to spend with them in their homes. On SpinalCord.org, Dr. Linda Lindsey writes that spending time with friends and family is a great way for those in recovery to assist themselves with the process of getting better.

2. Be respectful and realistic. There is no exact science to being a caregiver. In many instances, you may be doing something that you believe to be helpful that may only worsen the situation. On MSKTC.org, Dr. Thomas Novack reminds us that you may want to refrain from expressing false optimism like “you will be back to work in no time”. It’s important to treat your loved one like an adult, not talk down to him or her and respect his or her likes and dislikes regarding your care.

3. Encourage a healthy lifestyle. As mentioned, when someone is injured, it’s not so easy to participate in regular activities. So it’s important to help your loved one to not fall into the trap of letting their health go. “Get enough sleep,” Dr. Lindsey insists, “Eat regular, healthy meals and snacks…Cut down or cut out use of caffeine and tobacco.” Helping your injured loved one to avoid falling into bad habits during the rehabilitation process can go a long way in the healing process.

4. Reduce your own stress. A loved one’s injury is hard on you too. Obviously, it brings about a level of stress that no one is interested in having. Dr. Novack reminds us that stress is related to such health issues as heart disease, cancer and stroke. It’s important to always find time for yourself so that you can rest and care for your own needs. “If you are under constant stress, you are not going to be as helpful to your injured family member or anyone else,” says the doctor.

5. Take some time for yourself. Don’t assume that you can do it all. While helping your loved one with his or her recovery process, it’s important to remember that you need to be in a healthy state of mind and body yourself. As Dr. Lindsey points out, “caregiving is not a one-person job. You need time away for a healthy lifestyle, and there are going to be times when you are sick or need to get to get away for other reasons.”

6. Reward yourself. Your loving care for your injured family member or friend is an incredible gesture. You deserve to be rewarded for it. Treating yourself will not only help you to alleviate stress, but it will re-energize you to take on the difficult daily tasks that you’ve become responsible for. “Everyone needs something to look forward to,” writes Dr. Novack, “Promise yourself a cup of your favourite coffee or an opportunity to watch a good TV show or read something you enjoy.”

For more information about our Personal Care Needs Assessment, please don’t hesitate to call Independence Incorporated at 204-478-6644.

Proudly Providing PGAP

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Physical therapist working with patientPrepare yourself for a major understatement: returning to work after a long layoff due to illness or injury is hard. And while such a statement is quite obvious, it needs to be underlined that, for some individuals, rehabilitation is simply a harder process than it is for others. There are a number of factors that need to be considered to understand why. And they often surround the circumstances that lead to the person’s illness or injury.

Keep in mind that there is an emotional component to being unable to work. Not only is a person dealing with the physical pain that comes with his or her condition, but it can be mentally straining to not be able to perform functions in ways that he or she once could. As a result, getting one’s self to a state where he or she is not only physically capable of working again, but emotionally ready is incredibly important.

This is where Independence Incorporated is able to help. We proudly offer a special program to assist with such situations called PGAP. And what is PGAP? It stands for Progressive Goal Attainment Program and it’s a standardized intervention program that spans ten weeks. Its primary objective is to increase a patient’s rate of progress during the rehabilitation stages. You may have noticed that the word “intervention” has been used to describe this program.

PGAP is especially designed for those who need additional assistance during their layoffs from work. The program seeks to step in when necessary to help with those who are experiencing pain-related limitations. As we alluded to earlier, these limitations are not exclusive to physical capabilities. Many people whose illnesses or injuries are keeping them from their workplaces have fears about their impending returns.

Those with psycho-social issues such as a fear of re-injury or a pessimistic outlook are ideal candidates for PGAP. The program prioritizes disability reduction over pain reduction. Generally speaking, a patient will be referred to PGAP six weeks post-injury. Early intervention, we find, is key in the successful support of those who require our help. And PGAP can occur during the same time as other treatments are taking place.

At Independence Incorporated, our experience has shown us that PGAP, in fact, increases the success rates of treatments provided to those who are in the rehabilitation process. Thus far, PGAP’s return-to-work outcomes are approximately 65 to 75%. All that is required to take advantage of this program is to have us assess your client. Once the assessment is complete, we will be able to determine if an intervention is necessary.

During the ten week process, we provide two reports to unveil our discoveries and reveal information about the patient’s progress. One report is delivered at the halfway mark, after the fifth session, and the final report is provided at the completion of the PGAP program. We’re actually quite excited to be providing such a service. PGAP is known as the first-ever disability prevention program created to address psychosocial risk factors for pain and disability.

At Independence Incorporated, we completely understand the struggles that ill or injured individuals have with overcoming their challenges. Physical pain naturally leads to emotional anguish. And this can present barriers that require a little extra help getting over. PGAP has been particularly effective for those suffering from chronic musculoskeletal conditions, whiplash, fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

For further information about PGAP, please don’t hesitate to call us at 204-478-6644.

Assessing Our Home Assessments Through Q&A

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Disabled rehabilitationA significant injury or illness is never a welcome circumstance. However, for thousands of Canadians, such an occurrence is an inevitability that requires significant rehabilitation. Naturally, time must be taken from work to battle such hardships, as a person’s health always comes first. This is why before a person returns to work, he or she must take the very important steps to ensure that the return to work is done at the appropriate time.

At Independence Incorporated, we offer Home Assessments as one of our many services. It’s important that individuals are able to perform all of the necessary functions that are required for living in their homes before they are able to get back on the job. As part of our assessments, we address issues such as accessibility and stressors – both actual and perceived. We also look to determine the number of responsibilities that may affect a person’s ability to handle everyday tasks.

Once an appropriate home assessment has been completed, we are better able to gauge whether or not a person who has sustained an injury or illness that has kept him or her from work is able to return to the job. As you can imagine, there are a number of questions that need to be both asked and answered in order to make the right decision. At Independence Incorporated, we seek to complete thorough examinations by performing a Q&A session.

Has there been a significant change in the working conditions? Depending on the amount of time that a person has taken off of work, there may have been some changes to the job itself. It’s important for us to determine if those changes are ones that can be handled by the returning employee. We seek to discover if there are any limitations that the employee may have before green-lighting the way back to the workplace.

Can the job at work be modified? In some cases – even when the working conditions may have remained the same – the returning worker may have some of those limitations we mentioned. If so, we seek to discover if any modifications can be made at the workplace to make the transition back to work more comfortable for the employee. It’s also important to know if further physiotherapy or other forms of rehabilitation are necessary.

Has there has been a change in the employee’s health? There are times when an injury can significantly change a person’s health. After all, rehabilitation can certainly take a toll on a person. So while an injury may be healed, the employee may still require other methods of recovery in order to achieve greater strength, energy and endurance levels. Before one can return to work, he or she clearly needs to be healthy enough to do so.

Is there a new medical condition that may limit a returning worker’s effectiveness? If an employee’s health has changed, the job description for that employee may need to change as well. In some cases, a person can return to work, but not necessarily to do the same tasks that were asked of him or her before the injury or illness took place. If a limitation reduces or prevents a person from performing a job effectively, a new position may be a better fit.

Can the employee safely return to work? There are, of course, those situations when an employee is simply not healthy enough to return to a job in any capacity. Further rehabilitation is necessary in order to get a person to a state of readiness. And this is very important. Returning an employee to the workplace before he or she is capable of doing the work is bad for both the business and the employee. A home assessment helps greatly to make the right decision.

Of course, there are a variety of other questions that we answer to make sure an employee is ready to return to the job. For more information about our Home Assessments, please feel free to call us at 204-478-6644.