Towards the end of your family member’s rehabilitation, they will start to go out for trips and may spend weekends at home.
This is a very important part of your relative’s transition from hospital to home, especially as they begin to gain confidence in everyday living skills.
Spending time away from the SCI Centre with family and friends and dealing with the day-to-day practical challenges of living in an environment which is not necessarily adapted to their physical limitations is a good preparation for eventual discharge into the community.
Many SCI Centres have an adapted flat or bungalow within the hospital grounds. This can be used by the family and helps the SCI person readjust to life prior to being discharged.
It can be a daunting time leaving hospital for the first time for both you and your partner, so the better prepared you are and the more practise runs you have, the better.
The things that are normal for you may feel like big challenges for your relative.
This could be anything from getting into the house, moving around the room or going out into the garden. It will take time to adjust to different tasks and situations, to get used to practical day-to-day living and learning to live together again as a family. In the early stages after discharge from hospital, the SCI person may be very dependent on their family and other people for a variety of tasks.