The birth into this world of a new life, by all rights, should be a joyous and wonderful occasion. Unfortunately, birth injuries can result from many different causes, including malnutrition, overmedication, negligence, malpractice or simple lack of education. As far back as 1999, a University of California study found that brachial plexus injuries have causes in addition to shoulder dystocia. Ideally, such tragic situations would be entirely avoided, but in the event that misfortune should befall you or a loved one, here are seven frequently asked questions (FAQ) concerning coping with birth injuries and all the stresses they can bring with them.
Where Do I Go for Support?
First and foremost, you should always avail yourself with your loved ones and friends, parents and siblings, if you are coping with birth injuries. Positive relationships can be a tremendous boon in darker times. Those who have gone through similar situations can also provide you with information on what to expect when coping with birth injuries. You may even form new and lasting friendships, due to your shared experiences. Do not hesitate to reach out to friends and family about the day-to-day difficulties you are going through. On the other hand, do not neglect the happier side—share any triumphs with close friends and loved ones, positively reinforcing the strength of your personal relationships.
Where Can I Look for Help?
New methods of treatment may have arisen that could benefit your child. Look for the latest news on treatments that could alleviate the burdens of birth injuries; however, you should always consult both your physician and an experienced and qualified birth injury lawyer before proceeding with any sort of treatment, especially those that are deemed more experimental.
In addition, there are many organizations specializing in researching, preventing, or even curing birth injuries, that are private or public, to whom you can advocate the needs of your child and your own concerns for coping with birth injuries particular to your unique situation. Should your story gain some traction, you may earn your family a series of powerful allies. Be advised that this route does involve some spotlight on you and yours, so it is not for everyone.
What If I Need Financial Assistance?
In relation to the above point, there might be state and federal monies available, such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Medicaid. Such funding can help your child and you, in coping with birth injuries.
What About My Other Children?
Siblings of the injured child, whether older or younger, will want and need to know that their parents still care about them. Children may have difficulties understanding how strenuous and time-consuming coping with birth injuries can prove for their parents. If you spend all of your time fretting over or talking about your injured child, his or her siblings may feel abandoned. Therefore, it is always a good idea to check in with your other children, to show them that you still love them and will care for them, even though the new addition to the family may have special needs. It is important to frequently give all of your children some positive attention.
Is it Wrong to be Angry or Sad or Scared?
It most definitely is not! You, your child, and your extended family by association have just undergone a likely irreversible tragedy. Feelings of anger, regret, and sadness are perfectly normal and healthy when you are coping with birth injuries.
But What Should I do with that Anger?
Dealing with stress and powerful negative emotions is key to maintaining a balanced and fruitful life. If you feel like coping with birth injuries has run you ragged, you could seek out a support group of like-minded people who have experienced similar situations. Their advice and empathetic ears could help you in more ways than you might imagine.
What is the Next Step?
You are right to feel angry. You may even be right to feel betrayed. The question “what can go wrong with the birth process?” has many unfortunate answers, but hopefully making use of the above list of coping techniques will give you some solace. If you find coping with birth injuries to be too hard a strain, you may want to know how you could receive recompense for any damages that may or may not have resulted from negligence, or even malpractice on the part of doctor or hospital staff.
The fact of the matter is that many common types of birth injuries are caused by completely avoidable issues. With many Americans’ increased access to healthcare, due to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (PPACA), medical malpractice claims are expected to increase. You may find yourself among that number, or you may already have been wronged through no fault on your part. If you feel this to be the case, seek legal advice from a qualified, expert birth injury lawyer in order to determine, to the fullest extent possible, your rights and the options available to you going forward. For more information concerning birth injuries, or to seek legal counsel, visit our page.