Parenting comes with lots of responsibilities when it comes to caring for your kids.
An injury can make those normal parenting tasks much more difficult.
When taking care of others is your job, you have to rethink things during your recovery.
Little changes to your routine and getting extra help can make the job easier.
Keep reading to learn nine tips to help.
9 Tips for Taking Care of Others When You Are Injured Yourself
1. Follow Your Recovery Plan
You’re used to being the one who cares for everyone else.
When you’re injured, you also have to pay attention to your own needs.
If you don’t follow your doctor’s advice and treatment plan, you won’t recover as quickly from your injury.
Review the treatment plan and any restrictions your doctor recommends.
Think about how that impacts your parenting.
If you’re not supposed to lift anything over 10 pounds while you’re recovering, that makes parenting a baby or toddler difficult.
You may need to hire someone to help so you can stick to the weight requirements.
Look for ways to modify your normal parenting routine to fit with those restrictions to ensure you can recover as quickly as possible.
2. Keep the Kids Informed
You don’t have to tell your kids all the details about your injury.
Knowing too much can make them worry.
But letting them know in an age-appropriate way what’s going on can help them get on board during your recovery.
Let them know how things might change while you’re recovering from your injury.
Tell them about anyone who might be helping out at home.
3. Stick to Routines
Sticking to routines as much as possible makes it easier for everyone to cope while you’re recovering.
If your kids are worried about your injuries, that routine can give them a sense of normalcy and comfort.
You may need to modify your routines based on your injuries.
It’s okay to adapt the day-to-day to fit your new needs.
4. Loosen Your Standards
For the time being, you may need to loosen your standards with things such as cleaning and limiting screen time.
Give yourself a break when it comes to cleaning the house.
It’s okay if things get a little messier than normal.
You might also need to limit the type of activities you do with your kids.
Maybe you normally run around in the backyard with them most days.
If you’re injured, that might not be possible.
Look for quiet activities you can do while lying in bed or on the couch.
Consider your current screen time limits.
The general recommendation is no more than 1 hour of screen time daily for ages 2 to 5.
Older kids should have a consistent limit that doesn’t interfere with regular activities.
For now, you might let your kids have a little more screen time than normal as long as they still stay within healthy ranges.
This can give you more time to rest and keep them engaged when you can’t play with them like normal.
5. Enlist Family Help
Your recovery time may require you to lean on your family more than normal.
That can be challenging if you like to be in control or have difficulty delegating.
But letting your family help can ease the pressure on you and help you recover quickly.
Ask your spouse or partner to take over more of the parenting responsibilities.
You might need more help with giving the kids baths, getting them dressed, or handling the daily school drop-off routine.
You can also let the kids help more.
Even young kids may surprise you with how much they can help.
6. Focus on Convenience
Maybe you normally cloth diaper your baby and cook all of your meals from scratch.
Maybe you pack homemade lunches for your kids every school morning.
When you’re recovering from an injury, you may need to simplify some of your routines for convenience.
Instead of using your regular plates, eat off of paper plates, for now, to cut down on dishes.
Buy convenience foods or meals that are already prepared to cut down on the dinner workload.
Trade in the cloth diapers for disposables to reduce laundry demands.
Look at your daily routine to see what changes you can make to increase convenience for yourself.
Remember, these changes don’t have to be permanent.
When you get back to a more normal state, you can go back to your normal way of doing things.
7. Accept Outside Help
When you’re hurt, your friends, neighbors, church members, and other community members will likely offer help.
It’s natural to push away that help or say you’re fine.
But don’t miss out on those opportunities to get a helping hand.
The help could be as simple as a neighbor offering to take your kids to school for you.
A friend might offer to take the kids to the park to give you a break.
Other friends might try to help on a larger scale.
They might organize a fundraiser or set up a crowdfunding campaign to help cover your expenses while you recover.
They might organize a meal train, so you don’t have to worry about cooking.
You may also get general offers of help.
When someone asks you want they can do or says they’re available to help, don’t be afraid to ask.
Give the person some specific requests without being too picky or demanding.
If you really need help getting your kids to school or practices, ask for that.
If you could use help with meals, offer that as a suggestion.
People genuinely want to help make your life easier.
They may not be sure how to do that, so giving them specific suggestions ensures you get what you need and helps them feel useful.
8. Hire Help
If you need more help than you can get from your friends and family, consider hiring temporary help.
The goal after an injury is to keep your home running smoothly and allowing yourself to recover quickly.
Having a little extra help can make both of those things happen.
The people you need to hire depend largely on your situation.
If you have young kids at home, you may need to hire a mother’s helper for an extra hand in watching them.
Maybe you need help keeping up with the housework.
Consider hiring a cleaning service for inside and a lawn care service for outdoor upkeep.
Hiring help lets you save energy and rest so you can recover quickly without letting your house fall into disarray.
9. File a Personal Injury Claim
Filing a personal injury compensation claim can help make your recovery more manageable.
It may not help you recover faster, but it can give you financial compensation to take some of the burdens off of you during your recovery.
The financial compensation you receive can cover lost wages if you’re a working mom.
That takes stress off of you financially so you can focus on recovery and taking care of your family.
Having that financial security may also make it possible for you to hire the help you need around the house.
Taking Care of Others
When you’re responsible for taking care of others, an injury can interfere with that ability.
Focusing on your recovery and getting help when possible can make things easier for you.
Need more inspiration?
Check out our health and wellness archives for tips on taking care of yourself!