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Getting home

Getting home is a huge step on the road to recovery. While it is often an enormous relief to be back home, some may find the first few weeks a bit of an emotional rollercoaster in terms of readjusting to everyday life. In this section, we've provided some general information and advice on the common physical and psychological issues you might face,what you can do to help the recovery process along, and the types of help that might be available to you and your family after you get home.We've also included a few short pieces on other people's experience, which we hope you will find helpful.

 

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Web Link: BBC news on the lasting mental health impact of ICU

This is a very short but relevant article from the BBC’s health page, outlining the findings from a recent UK study into the mental health issues some patients face after Intensive Care.

Web Link: BBC News page on support after patients go home

This is a very short but interesting and relevant article from the BBC’s health page. It outlines a recent UK study involving over 300 patients, the physical problems they faced and wide variation in support they received after they got home.

Web Link: Blog from an ICU survivor (Louise)

This link will take you to Louise's blog site, which she regularly updates. Louise was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit at Derriford Hospital, Plymouth in November, 2018. She spent 13 days in the Intensive Care Unit, due to a perforated oesophagus (gullet) and another 71 days in hospital before being discharged home to her family. Louise writes in a very authentic and compassionate way about her experiences of having ICU delirium (strange or distressing dreams or hallucinations)...

External Video: Bob describes his long term recovery

In this short video, Bob (a former Intensive Care patient) talks about his recovery over the months and years since his accident.

Web Link: Borrowing a wheelchair

Although you may not have been issued with a wheelchair when you leave hospital, some people continue to have problems with walking after they get home.It might be helpful to borrow a wheelchair "just to get out of the house", if you're not sure how far you can walk, you tire easily or have lost your confidence a little. This link will take you to the webpage of the British Red Cross, who may be able to lend you mobility equipment.If you type in your postcode, they can...

Web Link: Breathing Space: help with anxiety, depression and feeling low

This link will take you to the Breathing Space website.They offer free, confidential advice and support over the phone, to people who are feeling anxious, depressed or low.

Article: Breathlessness

Is it common to feel breathless after Intensive Care? Breathlessness after Intensive Care is very common. Why do I feel breathless? The time you spent in Intensive Care may have caused weakness in your muscles, including those that help you breathe, so they are a bit weaker and have to work a bit harder to help with your breathing. Also while in Intensive Care you can quickly lose your ability to exercise, so while running for a bus may have made you breathless before, after...

Web Link: Breathlessness: what it is and how to manage it

This link will take you to the British Lung Foundation website. There's some really useful information on how to manage breathlessness, including treatment, breathing exercises, staying active, etc. You can enter your postcode into their website to find support in your local area. We hope you find it helpful.

Web Link: Carers' Assessment (NHS Choices)

When someone ends up Intensive Care, close family and friends are also affected. They play a very important part in the patients' recovery after they go home.Given the importance of their involvement, the government has ensured that they have certain rights that, by law, must be met. Close family or close friends are often called "carers" by health and social care services, and most have a legal right to an assessment of their own needs. That includes things like...

Web Link: Citizens Advice (Scotland)

This link will take you to the Citizens Advice Bureau. They can provide information and advice on a wide range of money, legal and health issues including: Money & debt Benefits Employment Housing Family problems Health Services Legal rights & responsibilities For advice in Scotland, go to https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/scotland/ For advice in England, go to https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/ For advice in Northern Ireland, go to...