A birth injury is arguably one of the most difficult things a new parent can face. After months of anticipating a positive birth experience, it’s hard to adjust to a traumatic birth or injury during the delivery process. If you’re a new parent whose child has suffered a birth injury, you are far from alone.
The good news is that there are many people who can help you during these challenging times. Whether your child has cerebral palsy, Erb’s palsy, brain damage, a limb injury, or something else, there are many professionals and other parents alike who can help you navigate your situation. For three steps to take after a birth injury, read on.
1. Hire a birth injury attorney.
The first thing you’ll want to do after experiencing a birth injury is to contact a birth injury lawyer. While your focus will naturally be on your child’s immediate needs, it’s important not to let the statute of limitations run out on a medical malpractice suit. Even if you aren’t sure that you’ll be filing a birth injury claim, getting connected to a good birth injury attorney or law firm will put you in the position of more options later and a better chance at a favorable verdict in your birth injury case.
Finding a birth injury law firm is as easy as a Google search. If you live in the state of Illinois, for example, a search for ‘birth injury lawyer in Chicago‘ will point you in the direction of experienced lawyers who can work with you to prove a doctor’s negligence and get you a verdict that will mean fewer worries about high medical bills to treat your child’s injury in the future. Most birth injury lawyers offer a free consultation, and meeting with them does not require you to file a birth injury case. Doing yourself the favor of meeting with an experienced lawyer is a great way to understand your options and give yourself peace of mind.
2. Pay attention to your mental health.
The fact is that it’s common for parents who’ve been through a birth injury to need psychotherapy to handle anxiety symptoms and PTSD. Even if you’ve never had an anxiety disorder in the past, anxiety therapy is a great way to pick up new skills that will help your mental wellbeing in the years ahead. The reality is that filing a medical malpractice case can be stressful. Navigating insurance companies, medical bills, and working with medical professionals on a treatment plan for your child can also be stressful and feel overwhelming. In hiring a licensed therapist to help you through the struggles ahead, you’ll put yourself in a better position to cope.
Much like an experienced attorney will be able to talk you through your legal options, a psychologist can work with you to manage symptoms of anxiety, grief, depression, and hopelessness along the way. They can also help you find resources in your community that will make the future easier. Some parents find that working with a psychiatrist and getting antidepressants can help with navigating the early stages of grief, too.
3. Connect with an online support group.
Childbirth and having a newborn are supposed to be a happy time. Few people can truly understand what it’s like to have a child with a serious injury. For this reason, it’s a good idea to connect with other parents who understand what it’s like to experience grief after the birth of a child. Other parents will be able to relate to the loss of normal life and the lifestyle changes that will be needed to ensure a quality of life in the future. Connecting with others who understand the nightmare you’ve just experienced is a great way to move forward. The truth is, even after a serious birth injury, there is hope. Working with experienced professionals and a group of people who understand will make things easier.