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Getting home

Getting home is a huge step on the road to recovery. While it is often an enormous relief to be back home, some may find the first few weeks a bit of an emotional rollercoaster in terms of readjusting to everyday life. In this section, we've provided some general information and advice on the common physical and psychological issues you might face,what you can do to help the recovery process along, and the types of help that might be available to you and your family after you get home.We've also included a few short pieces on other people's experience, which we hope you will find helpful.


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Web Link: Exercises for muscles and joints

Many patients suffer from muscle wasting, muscle weakness or stiff and painful joints after Intensive Care.This link will take you to the NHS Inform website and their pages on muscle and joint issues, which you might find helpful. You can print off their advice and there is also an "app" that you can download onto your phone.

Web Link: Exercises to keep you mobile

People who spend time in Intensive Care often experience tiredness (fatigue), muscle wasting and joint stiffness. This is particularly so for patients who have spent longer in ICU. This link will take you to Lancashire Teaching Hospitals' excellent online resource on recovery after COVID-19. This section includes a short video from a physiotherapist, and some short videos of simple exercises that you can do in bed, while sitting in a chair, and standing. You can access the full resource...

Document: Exercises while sitting

This is a document from NHS Choices.It gives advice on simple exercises you can do while sitting in a chair.You might want to speak to a doctor or physiotherapist before trying them.

Web Link: Exercises whilst sitting

This link will take you to an NHS page on exercises that you can do whilst sitting. There are exercises for flexibility, balance and strength, including helpful pictures that show you what to do.

Article: Eye problems after Intensive Care

Some people develop problems with their eyes after Intensive Care.This commonly includes conditions called corneal abrasion (a painful scratch on the surface of the clear part of the eye) and keratitis (inflammation of the clear part of the eye).Symptoms include sore, dry or gritty eyes which can last for a few weeks after Intensive Care. If your symptoms are particularly troublesome or don't seem to be getting better, speak to your doctor, GP or optician.

Web Link: Fatigue (tiredness) after COVID-19

Fatigue (tiredness) is a normal part of the body’s response to fighting a viral infection such as COVID-19 (sometimes called post-viral fatigue). It's also very comon after any serious or critical illness, and may last for some time. You may find that you sleep more, are perhaps a little shaky on your feet, and that your concentration and memory are affected. This link will take you to the Royal College of Occupational Therapists' expert guidance on managing fatigue while...

External Video: Fatigue (tiredness): how "pacing" can help

Video length: 06:32 (Watch now or tap the button above to add this resource to your personal library to watch later) This short clip will explain how the technique of pacing may be used to manage any fatigue (tiredness) that you may be experiencing.

Web Link: Fatigue (tiredness): M.E. Association

The M.E Association aims to support people with M.E. (Myalgic Encephalopathy), Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) and Post Viral Fatigue Syndrome (PVFS), and their family members. Fatigue is really common after Intensive Care, and may also be a symptom of "Long COVID". You may therefore find some of the support and guidance from the ME Association helpful, so we've included a link here. They offer information, advice and support, including leaflets, a telephone support service,...

Web Link: Fatigue (tiredness): practical advice

Fatigue is a normal part of the body’s response to fighting a viral infection such as COVID-19 (sometimes called post-viral fatigue). It can continue for some time after the infection has cleared. It can make you sleep more, feel a liitle shaky on your feet,and it can affect your concentration and memory.This link will take you to expert guidance from the Royal College of Occupational Therapists, with practical advice on self-isolation, rest, eating well and gradually increasing your...

Article: Feeling anxious

Is it common to feel anxious after Intensive Care? It's very common (and completely understandable) to feel anxious after Intensive Care. Research suggests that up to 4 in 10 Intensive Care patients suffer from anxiety at some point. Symptoms of anxiety The symptoms of anxiety can be physical as well as emotional. They include: a pounding heart, feeling hot, dizzy or light-headed, muscle tension, feeling shaky and unsteady, hot or cold sweats, and having difficulty breathing....