Leaving Rehab: Tips and Tricks From Other WAGS of SCI For New Couples Leaving Rehab — Reeve Connect
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Leaving Rehab: Tips and Tricks From Other WAGS of SCI For New Couples Leaving Rehab

WAGSofSCI Moderator Posts: 379 Moderator
100 Awesomes 100 Likes 100 Comments First Anniversary
Leaving Rehabilitation: Tips For Other Couples For Those First Few Months Back At Home 

The first few months (ok.. a year) after leaving rehab are INTENSE. We aren't going to lie. Our partners are adjusting to a "new normal" after leaving the confines of hospital rehabilitation and the emotions are running high. Not only is this all new for HIM, but YOU are normally the one who has to put things into place, set things up, organize the house or even move to a new space before he gets home. You are learning just as much as he is, and you've probably spent many late nights surfing the internet and madly trying to find ways to customize and adapt your life at home for his arrival.

Girl, we have been there. You're NOT alone. We know what you feel like.. and we can honestly say it feels like you're drowning but trying to keep your head up above water. These feelings are all normal, and its up to you to set yourself up for success in order to prevent any more stress than you already are going through. Breathe in, breathe out.

We created this thread for other WAGS of SCI who have been in your shoes to provide advice and tools to get you through these first few months and help you survive while being a caregiver AND partner. 

Here are some tips from us and other WAGS of SCI so far:

- Invest in a King Size split king mattress with "his side" controls for leg and upper body raising and lowering. You've probably been told to get a separate hospital bed with hospital mattress... theres nothing worse than not being able to sleep together and snuggle, especially when he's been alone in a bed at the hospital for so long. You can get a medical bed that is two twin sized frames that clip together to form one king. Its expensive but you wont regret it in the long run. Invest in waterproof mattress covers and a few sets of good sheets. 

- Continue physical therapy upon returning home. Set up some appointments with a good neuro-rehab or adapted gym. Look into therapists who come to you as well. Insurance sometimes covers all of this. 

- Set your house up with tower fans as well as blankets for those nights when he's too cold, then too hot.. then shivering because of his temperature control issues. Heat pads can be really helpful but make sure they're not too hot and that you monitor them for skin issues and burning. No one wants burns.

- Buy a weighted blanket. The good ones help soothe, keeps him warm, and helps with anxiety and spasms.

- Set up a good calendar system at home for appointments. You will have too many at first to keep track of so make sure your schedules are organized and in plain view.

- Dedicate an area for medical supplies that allows you to keep them organized, easy for you or him to get at, and have a way to transport his immediate supplies easily (ie a cart or storage box).

- Invest in a lap resting table top for eating while he's in his chair or on the sofa. Ikea has these for under $20!

- Get some pill organizers

- Look on amazon for adapted devices and ramps.. most can be found there now for a reduced cost.

- Organize a friend or family member to be "on call" for the first few days - or have someone come and stay with you if you're comfortable with it. You will most likely need help.

Any other good tips and tricks for returning home you have? COMMENT BELOW! Thanks xoxo 

Your WAGS of SCI
(Elena and Brooke)


  • HotWheels11
    HotWheels11 Member Posts: 10
    10 Comments 5 Likes
    Setting up a routine is a MUST! Keeping yourself and your supplies and medications organized was a game changer. You have to have a spot for all your supplies in one area and your medications in little pill counters. Managing your body temp is huge too, like in the summers it's way too hot so having spray bottle and heat blanket for winter. 
    WAGSofSCI Moderator Posts: 379 Moderator
    100 Awesomes 100 Likes 100 Comments First Anniversary
    Those are all great, thanks! 
    Your WAGS of SCI
    (Elena and Brooke)
  • Kaelier
    Kaelier Member Posts: 1
    First Comment
    Set up some counseling for yourself and/or you and your S.O. for when you get home. If you are working, a lot of organizations have an Employee Assistance Program that you can take advantage of a certain number of free counseling sessions. The first year if def the hardest and processing at home vs. at the hospital/rehab can bring different emotions. For me personally, talking to a professional a few months into us being home was a great help for me in our adjustment to new life at home.