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Common psychological issues

In this section, we've provided some basic information and advice on the common psychological and emotional issues that many patients face after getting home. These include feeling anxious, low or irritable, having flashbacks, mood swings, poor concentration and problems sleeping.Not everyone will face these issues, and some may find them more troublesome than others.We've provided some general advice which we hope you find useful.

It's important to remember that, for some people, psychological or emotional problems arise late in the recovery process, often once they returned to normal. This can be quite difficult for a number of reasons. Some people hide or feel guilty about these issues when they feel that their family has already been through enough and they want to appear strong for everyone else. It's never too late or too difficult to get the help you need.

 

 

 

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Article: Flashbacks

What are flashbacks? Flashbacks are vivid and frightening memories.They can be intrusive, which means that they pop into your mind completely out of nowhere (or are sometimes brought about by something that reminds you of a particular event, even if it was really a dream or hallucination) and can make you feel like you're reliving a particular experience. You may feel like you have little or no control over them. Is it common to have flashbacks? Patients often...

Web Link: Healthtalkonline:patients' experiences of Intensive Care

Many people find it helpful to hear that other people's experiences are similar to their own. This link will take you to the Healthtalkonlone website and to the section on patients' experiences of Intensive Care. Here, you can watch short videos, listen to voice files and read their interviews.

Web Link: Healthunlocked.com

Many people find it helpful to hear that other people's experiences are similar to their own or to share their experiences online.This link will take you to the Intensive Care web page of Healthunlocked.They have a blog page in which patients and family members can ask questions and share experiences of Intensive Care and the recovery process.

Web Link: ICU Support Groups

Some people find it helpful to meet and talk with others who have been through similar experiences to their own. This is the weblink to ICUsteps website withe details of patient and family support groups UK wide including Edinburgh and Dundee It will tell you more about the groups, who they are, what they do and when and where the meetings are held.

Web Link: ICUSteps: an after Intensive Care support group

This link will take you to the ICUSteps website. They are a charity set up and run by former Intensive Care patients,their family members and healthcare staff. They run informal "drop in" sessions for patients and families, and have developed a number of free booklets which you can download (some of them have been translated into several different languages). *Corona virus: All face to face meetings have been cancelled, but please visit the ICUsteps website for details on how...

Article: Irritability and mood swings

It is common to feel that your emotions are "all over the place" after having spent time in Intensive Care.Patients often tell us that it is only after they got home or are more physically able, that the emotional side of what has happened comes to the fore. There are many reasons why you might feel like this, all of which are perfectly understandable. Not knowing or not remembering how you ended up in Intensive Care, or what happened while you were there, for example,...

Web Link: Mental Health and Well-being: Health in Mind

This link will take you to the website of Health in Mind, an Edinburgh-based charity promoting postive mental help and well-being across Scotland. They offer a wide rane of support, including information about local services, guided self-help, counselling and trauma support, courses in well-being self-management, etc, etc.

Article: Poor concentration

Patients often tell us that they suffer from poor concentration after Intensive Care. You might struggle to read a newspaper or a book, for example, or you might struggle to follow a television programme or film. Patients also tell us that they often lose interest or "can't be bothered" with some of the things they really enjoyed before, such as listening to music or watching football on the television.This is usually temporary and will start to improve as you recover. It...

Web Link: Post traumatic stress-treatment options

This link will take you to the NHS Choices website and their pages on the assessment and treatment of Post Traumatic Stress.

Document: Post-traumatic stress-a patient's story

This is a short article in the British Medical Journal.It was written by a former patient who was training to be a Doctor at the time when she became ill.