It’s okay to give yourself time to heal.

Part of the “Life After Traumatic Brain Injury” series

Traumatic brain injury survivors often experience internalized pressure to heal quickly after their injury. From migraines and brain fog to vision problems and vertigo — the very real symptoms of TBI are easy to dismiss due to their invisible nature.

As a personal injury attorney, William Ricigliano encounters these biases when he represents clients with a traumatic brain injuries. To a jury, his clients appear to be in good health: “TBI is an invisible illness. The injured person may look completely normal from the outside, but all of their impairments, cognitive, emotional, behavioral, are happening from the inside.”

Outside of the courtroom, those with brain injuries continue to face pressure to prove the legitimacy of their symptoms. By appearing healthy on the outside, TBI survivors may find that their friends, family, and coworkers harbor unrealistic expectations for life after injury.

Katherine Price Snedaker of PINK Concussions understands the consequences of those expectations. In the following clip from the Legal Ease Podcast, Katherine brings to light an alarming pattern: women aren’t giving themselves enough time to heal after injury.

Transcript:

What I find is we don’t give women enough runway for healing. If you have a plane landing on a runway, but the runway is half the length that it should be, you’re going to have a catastrophe. If the runway is longer than there’s more time for the plane to land.

So when women call me panicked about I’m not better now. And I say, “You know what? What if six month was the sweet spot? What if six months — what if you gave yourself six months to, you know…?”

But no. “It’s a mild, mild TBI. It’s a mild concussion. I should be better now. My boss thinks I should be better now. My teacher thinks I should be better now. I think I should be better now.”

Women judge themselves as not healing fast enough. What if we asked everybody with broken arms and legs to heal in half the time that they were supposed to heal?

And you can see the trauma and the social implications of “You’re not healing fast enough.” So I think that causes secondary issues to the overall injury itself. And if you have anxiety and depression because you’re not healing on a timetable that’s been set for you.

Watch the full interview with Katherine Price Snedaker.

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Ricigliano & Filopei, P.C.

Ricigliano & Filopei, P.C. is a personal injury law firm with locations in NY and NJ. William Ricigliano and Frank Filopei co-host the Legal Ease Podcast.