Ways to differentiate grief from depression

If you or someone you know has recently suffered the loss of a loved one, it is not uncommon to go through the emotionally, mentally, and physically taxing symptoms of grief. This is especially true in circumstances that require a wrongful death attorney as sudden loss can be especially harrowing. 

However, there may be times when you question whether it’s the normal grieving process or clinical depression. That’s a normal concern, which is why it’s important to know the difference and how can you differentiate between grief and depression?

Grief is a Normal Process

The process known as grief is a normal and natural human response to any loss but is unique to each individual. Each person might experience any number of emotional, cognitive, behavioral, physical, and spiritual reactions throughout the grieving process. Some more common symptoms are experienced with varying degrees in most people.

Signs and Symptoms of Grief

Some of the natural responses to a loss are changes in appetite, sleep habits, and routines. You may go through periods of extreme anger, loneliness, and sadness, along with difficulty concentrating, fatigue, and loss of interest in things you usually cared about. You may avoid social interactions and neglect taking care of yourself or your normal household chores.

Depression is Much More Dangerous

Depression on the other hand is a clinical condition that should be evaluated and diagnosed by a medical professional. For a person to be diagnosed, certain symptoms must be present for at least two weeks. Among those are a depressed mood or irritability, loss of interest in activities, disruptive sleep patterns, and loss of appetite and weight loss.

In addition to those symptoms that are similar to grief, a depressed individual may have strong feelings of morbidity, worthlessness or guilt, extreme sluggishness, indecisiveness, and difficulty concentrating, significant impairment to thoughts or actions, and recurrent thoughts of death or suicide. As you can see, unlike normal grief, depression can be deadly. Some have found relief with Ketamine-assisted psychotherapy.

Differences

Grief and depression are similar in many ways, but the main difference is that grief usually decreases over time, even though it may come back occasionally when a person is reminded of the event which caused the grief in the first place, such as the anniversary of a loved one’s passing. In contrast, depression is more constant and overwhelming in a person’s life.

It is possible that a person could be experiencing grief and depression at the same time. If you find that you or a loved one is grieving, but there is a feeling of being stuck or an inability to cope with daily life, it’s a good idea to seek help immediately from a physician or health provider. Clinical depression is typically treated with a combination of medication and psychotherapy. In recent years, ketamine infusions have been very effective in treating depression.

Grief isn’t usually treated with medication, but many people find it helpful to reach out to bereavement groups that specialize in helping people going through the grieving process. There is also a great number of online services and phone hotlines available to help those dealing with a loss to get through the process.  

Interesting statistics on marriage and cohabitation in the US

At some point in their younger years, nearly everyone imagines themselves in a happy marriage with children. Maybe they want to model their parents, maybe they want to model other families they see. However, those attitudes often change on the way to adulthood and for some time after. 

It’s becoming increasingly common and accepted for non-married couples to live together. Some cohabitating partners even decide that marriage isn’t necessary in a loving relationship. As the idea of the nuclear family continues to crumble, here are some interesting statistics on marriage and cohabitation in the U.S. 

More Adults are Cohabiting 

Of those ranging in age from 18 to 44, 59% have lived unmarried with a partner at some point in their lives while half of them have never been married. Another 38% of that 59% have lived with various partners. 

Compared to the previous census, those who have been married at some point are on the decline. It’s more common now for couples to skip the wedding bells and simply enjoy cohabitation. That doesn’t mean marriages are ending, but attitudes towards it are changing. 

Cohabitation Acceptance

As attitudes towards marriage change, so do opinions on cohabitation. Only 14% of Americans think cohabitation before marriage is unacceptable, compared to 69% who think it’s perfectly okay. Another 16% are fine with it so long as the couple plans to marry. 

Younger adults are more likely to have a positive opinion on cohabitation. Roughly 78% of those under 30 think it’s fine, while only 63% of those 65 and older are on board. Overall attitudes still support marriage, however, with 53% of Americans seeing benefits in long-term couples who eventually tie the knot. 

There’s More Trust in Marriage

It isn’t uncommon for relationships that come to a grinding halt to experience legal trouble, like relying on this Stange Law Firm child custody attorney in Bloomington. Trust is often at the crux of a relationship on the rails. So, who is better off in the long run?

As it turns out, Americans are more trusting when they’re in a marriage instead of cohabitating. The numbers are 53% to 41%, which isn’t an incredibly large gap. Satisfaction and communication skills, on average, are also higher for those with wedding bands. 

The Money Factor

For many cohabitating couples, especially in a down economy, living together simply makes the most financial sense. Roughly four-in-ten adults admit to this, with 38% citing finances and another 37% citing convenience as the primary reason behind their cohabitation. 

Most cohabitators who are not engaged also cited money as the reason behind delaying marriage or removing it from the table altogether. Either money is tight, they are unsure if their partner is financially ready, or they don’t believe they are financially ready themselves. 

Legal Rights

Roughly 65% of adults think cohabitators should be able to enter legal agreements that give them the same rights as married couples. Conservatives are nearly evenly split on the debate, while 77% of liberal-minded voters are in favor. 

Should this agreement ever come to pass, it has the potential to greatly add couples financially. There would also be more rights in court, especially when dealing with a family lawyer in OC over custody. As of now, there are no motions or bills in the works. 

Love Rules All

Love and companionship remain the primary motivators behind any partnership. Of the married, 90% said love was the primary factor while 66% said companionship. For those cohabitating, the numbers were 73% and 61%. 

Coping With A Permanent Disability After A Car Accident

Anger, sadness, despair — these are all normal things to feel after a car accident, especially if that accident left you disabled. Even after all the fingers have been pointed, the Denver DUI defense lawyers duke it out in court, and the legal battles are wrapped up, the pain of becoming disabled can still cut deep. Learning to cope is paramount if you want to be able to continue on and adjust to your new reality. There are many emotions you’ll need to sort through, and these are some tips that can help.

Dealing With Feelings

A sudden disability can stir up a whole host of negative emotions, with anger being one of the most prominent. You may well find your temper flaring up and could possibly experience a chronic state of rage that pushes your loved ones away. It’s not conscious, in all cases, but they can tell when anger is the only thing you feel and will distance themselves as a result.

Coming to grips with your anger will require you to exercise some patience. Your inclination might be to snap at anyone who comes near over the slightest offense (because you are angry). Start by recognizing that you aren’t truly mad at other people — you’re angry because of your disability, and the people in your life don’t deserve to be treated poorly because of that.

The other big feelings you’ll experience are sadness and depression. In milder forms, they may take you out of things for a while, but you’ll still be able to get back on track after working through your feelings alone. If your depression is clinical, however, it may require more attention to deal with, as it comes with a whole host of negative symptoms (including thoughts of death and suicide).

Generally speaking, it takes a combination of medication and psychotherapy to deal with major depression, but finding the right medication is often a process of trial-and-error. During this period of adjustment, it’s important that you keep the lines of communication open with your support network, and allow yourself to accept help to get you where you need to be mentally and emotionally.

Continue Adapting

It’s important to establish some kind of normalcy to help adjust to a new, post-accident life. Establishing a routine, having hobbies and activities, and pairing these with a great support network and excellent communication are all key to adapting and getting on with life. Remember, don’t push the people who care away — allow them to help and welcome them as a part of your everyday adjustment process.

What to do if your car catches fire

Drivers have several fears and phobias while on the road. Some worry a sneeze could trigger a pileup on the highway, while others cope with the mental and emotional damage leftover from a previous accident. One such terrifying scenario would be driving along when, all of a sudden, your car catches fire. 

What would you do in this situation? Drivers Ed hasn’t prepared you for it, and it’s likely that no one else has either. Don’t let this scenario instill fear, though. There are a few simple steps to take that will keep you and anyone in your car safe. Here’s what you need to know. 

Stopping the Problem Before It Starts

Regular maintenance is the best way to ensure that your car will not catch on fire. Since maintenance can be expensive, it also helps to know what warning signs to look for so you can get your car to the shop instead of letting them slide. These include:

  • Regularly blown fuses
  • Oil and other fluids leaking
  • Loose wiring or exposed wiring
  • Loud sounds from the exhaust
  • Sudden changes in fuel and oil levels
  • Sudden changes in engine temperature
  • Missing caps (oil, gas, and other fluid tanks)
  • Broken hoses

While these parts may not cause a fire, they are likely to cause an accident as systems begin to malfunction. Several pedestrians and drivers have been injured in a motor vehicle accident as a result of these issues in another vehicle. Any wreck also makes it more likely that a fire will start. 

If a Fire Starts

It’s easier said than done, but don’t panic and never try to put the fire out. If you see flames from the engine, rearview, or coming out of your vents, pull over and stop the car immediately. Turn the car off, taking the keys out of the ignition, then proceed to get everyone out of the vehicle. 

Take everyone and stand as far away as possible, preferably 100 feet, from the vehicle to avoid inhaling toxic fumes. Never let anyone run back for personal items. Remember, insurance can replace items but it cannot bring back a life. You should also encourage bystanders to stay away.

Once everyone is safe, call 911 and alert them to the situation. After the call, warn oncoming traffic of the danger ahead.  The fire department and police will show up on the scene, putting the car out and creating an incident report. After the report is made, call your insurance company to let them know what happened. 

Dealing With the Aftermath

If you can, get a rental car while through your insurance company while they handle the accident. It’s also vital that you find out what caused the fire, which your insurance’s investigators can help you accomplish. Various states have lemon laws protecting drivers against defects and their aftermath. If you’re in California, then study your rights under the California Lemon Law and pursue action if need be. 

Most fires lead to a total loss, which your insurance will determine. Combined with lemon laws, you could find yourself the owner of a brand-new vehicle. However, you will simply have to wait until your insurance company determines the cause of the fire. 

7 Tips For Co-Parenting During The Coronavirus Quarantine

Co-Parenting is difficult enough on its own. As Dorie Rogers, an experienced divorce attorney in Orange County points out, there’s a long list of do’s and don’ts to follow if you want to pull it off right and provide the best environment possible for your child.

Now, with the added stress of the coronavirus pandemic and quarantine, questions abound about how to successfully navigate parental responsibilities and custody agreements with an ex-partner while also limiting contact and following quarantine orders.

It’s a tricky balance, but there are some tips that will help you navigate the situation. The Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC), in conjunction with American Academy Of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML), have released their Seven Guidelines for Parents Who Are Divorce/Separated and Sharing Custody of Children During the COVID19 Pandemic. Here’s what you should take to heart.

Be Healthy

You should take care to keep yourself healthy, and set a positive example for your children to do the same. Wash your hands, wipe down surfaces, social distance, and stay up-to-date with the CDC’s guidelines and what’s going on with the outside world.

Be Mindful

The pandemic is serious business, and you should treat it as such. On the flipside, though, you’ll want to be mindful of your children, and stay strong to help them cope. Stay calm, field whatever questions they might have, and reassure them that, although things are abnormal now, normality will return at some point down the line.

Be Compliant

This tip is in reference to any court orders custody agreements. Even with quarantine in effect and schools closed, you’ll want to maintain adherence to what the courts have mandated as closely as possible.

Be Creative

When it comes to following those court orders, though, you’ll have to get creative in some instances. Life has changed, and you’ll have to roll with those changes in a reasonable way to maintain safety. Plans may get disrupted, but you can help maintain closeness by utilizing online chat programs like Skype and FaceTime.

Be Transparent

Communication is key to maintaining good relationships, and that’s doubly so during this pandemic. Be honest if you think you or your child has been exposed to the virus, and work with your parenting partner to take steps to mitigate harm.

Be Generous

Even in the best of times, kindness goes a long way. It’ll go even further in the unique circumstances of quarantine, as making accommodations for your co-parent and being flexible whenever possible will help take stress off of you both.

Be Understanding

As an extension to the point above, you’ve got to be understanding of the trials that quarantine has placed on everyone. The economic impacts, for instance, have made it difficult for some to earn money, so both recipients and payers of child support should recognize this, realizing it is a temporary circumstance and working together to best provide for their children.

Motorcycle Crash Awareness Refresher for Spring

Spring is officially here, which means it’s time to enjoy some much-needed warm weather. It also means that motorcyclists will be hitting the road again, but doing so at their own peril. Each spring, the number of motorcycle accidents in the U.S. rises dramatically as other drivers are unprepared to share the road with these vehicles. 

In 2017, 89,000 motorcyclists were injured while another 5,172 died as the result of an accident. So, this is a spring refresher for riders and drivers alike to help bring these statistics down and keep everyone safe. 

Why So Many Accidents?

Motorcycles are a lot smaller than their automobile counterparts, which can make them difficult to spot while driving. It isn’t uncommon for a bike to seemingly come out of nowhere since motorcycles can fit right inside a driver’s blind spot. 

If you’ve ever wondered why motorcycles are so loud, that’s the reason. Since you can’t always see them, a louder engine gives you the ability to hear them. Regardless, not noticing a motorcyclist is the main reason behind the high number of accidents. 

Tips for Riders

The best way to protect yourself as a motorcyclist is to always wear appropriate safety gear and obey every traffic law. If an accident does occur, the last thing you want is to be held liable. Keep in mind that different counties often have their own regulations for motorcyclists. That means you would need a motorcycle accident attorney in Orange County if the accident occurred in Santa Anna and one in Cook County if you wrecked in Chicago, for instance. 

The next best thing you can do is learn to ride defensively. Never assume that a driver can see you. Instead, always ride with your headlights on and stay out of their blind spots every chance you get. Don’t swerve between vehicles, and give yourself plenty of room between cars on the road. 

Part of driving defensively also includes anticipating driver’s moves, keeping an eye out for lane changes and turns. You can keep an eye on a car’s back tires to give you a heads up when they’re about to move, even if they fail to signal.  

Tips for Drivers

For the driver, it’s vital that you monitor your blind spots as best as possible. Positioning your side and rearview mirrors to give you the broadest viewing range around your vehicle is an excellent start, but you also need turn your head when changing lanes. 

Like riders, drivers should also give themselves plenty of space between other vehicles on the road. It also helps to slightly reduce your speed when driving behind a motorcycle, giving you extra time to react and avoid a potential accident. 

Finally, be careful when making a left turn. There are more blind spots on your left than on your right, making these turns more dangerous. Keep an eye and an ear out for motorcycles while driving and you can help cut down the number of accidents that take place each spring. 

Pre-existing medical conditions and car accidents

Despite the country’s best efforts to spread awareness about and enforce safe driving practices, there are still hundred of thousands of car accidents each year. The reasons behind them range from drinking to texting and road hazards, but did you know that pre-existing medical conditions are a factor?

The term “impaired driving” makes most people think of drugs and alcohol, but it also pertains to various medical conditions that impact an individual’s ability to drive. If you have a pre=existing condition, then this is how it could affect your car accident. 

Types of Pre-Existing Impairments

There’s a long list of conditions that could potentially impact your ability to drive. Anything that impairs your skill, judgement, or motor functions can count. Some of the most common include:

  • The rise and fall of blood sugar in diabetes
  • Fatigue, weakness, and shortness of breath in heart disease
  • Disorders that cause seizures
  • And even poor eyesight

Knowing the Law

It isn’t uncommon for people with diagnosed conditions to have restrictions placed on their driver’s license. These are determined by the severity of the impairment and include limitations for things like nighttime driving, heavy traffic, and specific areas such as school zones. 

If you do have a pre-existing condition, speak with your primary care physician about how it may impact your driving ability. They can write a letter detailing the severity of your impairments, which you can relay to your state’s Department of Transportation. 

Determining Fault with Pre-Existing Conditions

So, what happens in the event of an accident? Bad eyesight and seizures can be just as dangerous, if not more than, drinking and driving. Since a drunk driver is found liable, it might make sense to think that someone with a pre-existing condition would be as well. However, that isn’t always the case. 

Determining liability depends on a variety of factors. Intentional negligence, the extent of injuries, and how much of a role the disability played in the accident are all taken into consideration. This makes it vital that you have skilled legal representation for your case. 

It helps to have legal professionals whose practice revolves around vehicle wrecks, but also one who understands how disabilities can play a part. Finding the right lawyer isn’t always easy, but these car accident attorneys in Hermosa Beach are an excellent example of what to look for. 

Fighting for Your Rights

When you know how a pre-existing condition affects your driving ability, you’re cautious about ensuring your safety and the safety of others. If you do find yourself in an accident, don’t let the other party pin liability on your for your condition. 

You have the right to argue your case with legal representation and prove that your impairment did not directly cause the accident. You also have the right to seek compensation when the other party was at fault. With the right legal team on your side, this is a fight you can and will win. 

Top reasons people get fired

Employees across the nation find themselves out of a job each day. While some might be laid off or suffer an injury that prevents them from working, the majority are fired. Of course, no two firings are the same. Here are the top reasons why employers fire their staff. 

Bad Performance

The most frequently cited reason is poor performance, but this category is just as broad as the reasons why employees are fired. It can be related to the number of errors an employee makes, their speed when completing tasks, missing deadlines, or just poor judgement. Whatever the cause, this is when the employee does not meet their expected job duties. 

Missing too Much Work

Everyone needs time off now and again to recuperate, recover from an illness, or take care of urgent obligations. However, some employees call in sick at an alarming rate. While each employer has their own idea about how much is too much, this is an easy way to lose a job. 

Coming in Late and Leaving Early

These two reasons are lumped into tardiness or just not being at work when you should be. It’s more common for an employer to fire an employee who is consistently late for their shifts. Every minute a worker is late either pushes back the workload or places increased stress on other employees. 

There are workers who routinely leave their jobs early, too. This has the same effect as clocking in late, but can also cause other employees to have to work longer hours. If someone left early without completing their tasks, for instance, others might have to pick up the slack. 

Stealing

Believe it or not, 40% of managers have fired their employees for theft. That can include everything from cash in the register to company tools and supplies. In some cases, personal use of company property can also count as stealing. Playing games on a work desktop or using the printer to make yard sale fliers are good examples. 

Drinking and Drugs

This reason is self-explanatory, but a surprising 35.2% of employees lose their job over substance abuse. Even in cases where a drink on the job doesn’t create a dangerous environment, alcohol and other drugs can cause employees to clash with company policy in their behavior. 

Gossip, Language, and Relationships

People talk in the workplace, but excessive gossip often causes issues between employees that management ends up having to resolve. These issues often lead to hostility, which is why employers cite this as a reason for firing their staff. 

A foul mouth is another way to lose your job, but what constitutes as inappropriate language changes from one industry to the next. As for relationships, romantic or otherwise, mixing business with pleasure is never advised. When couples separate but remain coworkers, conflict is almost sure to follow. 

Disputing Termination

While an employer can cite any of these common reasons, their decision to fire an employee isn’t always justified. If you feel that you’ve lost your position unfairly, then you’ll need to hire lawyers for wrongful termination that can make your case in court. You have a right to compensation in these cases, but it’s nearly impossible to prove an unjustified firing on your own. 

Recent advances in traumatic brain injury treatment

A traumatic brain injury alters every aspect of a person’s life. Today, it is the leading cause of death and disability for those under the age of 45. In order to combat this issue, researchers of pathobiology have been working to develop neuroprotective strategies. The majority have been unsuccessful, but there are a few promising clinical findings that have led to advancements in the treatment of these injuries. 

What Is Traumatic Brain Injury?

Traumatic brain injury can occur in a wide variety of ways, but is most often caused by a violent blow or jolt to the head. Any object that penetrates brain tissue, like a bullet or shattered piece of skill, will also result in this injury. A tackle in football, car accident, or serious fall can all be the culprit. 

These brain injuries are measured from mild to severe, with the mild variety affecting brain cells temporarily. Those that are more severe often leave bruising, torn tissues, and bleeding in the brain, resulting in long-term symptoms. When an impact is serious enough, traumatic brain injury can lead to death. Symptoms include:

  • Loss of consciousness
  • Confusion, disorientation, or being in a daze
  • Headaches
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Drowsiness and fatigue
  • Speech impairment
  • Sleep disturbances, either an inability to sleep or sleeping excessively
  • Dizziness often combined with a loss of balance and coordination 
  • Sensory impairments like blurred vision or ringing in the ears
  • Light and sound sensitivity
  • Memory and mood impairments
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Comatose states

Advancements in Treatment

The majority of aid for traumatic brain injury focuses on prevention, like seatbelt legislation and helmet use. In cases of mild injury, the best prescription is often rest until they can slowly resume daily activities. For more severe injuries, relieving pressure inside the skull as well as clotted blood and skill fractures is vital. 

Several medications are commonly employed, as well, ranging from anti-anxiety to anticonvulsants and stimulants. Various forms of therapy including physical, speech, and cognitive are also common treatments to help victims rehabilitate. 

Occupational therapy and vocational counseling are newer forms of treatment for those with traumatic brain injuries. Occupational therapy focuses on helping individuals relearn day-to-day tasks they may have forgotten how to do from the injury, such as getting dressed or cooking. 

Vocational counseling is designed to help patients get back to work. It also helps individuals find work opportunities and assists them in any challenges they may face upon returning to the workforce. Cognitive therapy has also seen advancements in treating attention, perception, and judgement impairments. 

Seeking Aid

The first step in the recovery process is to seek medical attention and continue to follow the plan set forth by your doctor. When suffering a brain injury due to an accident, you may also be able to seek compensation to pay for any treatments, doctors visits, and medications.  

Without intensive therapies and medication, even mild symptoms will become worse as they impact every facet of your daily life. It can take months to years to recover from more severe injuries, with some people experiencing alterations for the rest of their lives. As research continues, hopeful treatments continue to emerge. 

How travel can heal us from trauma

Did you know that 223.4 million people in the United States have experiences some type of traumatic event in their lives? That’s 70% of all adults. Trauma can lead to PTSD, severe depression, and several other symptoms that directly affect a person’s wellbeing. 

Healing that trauma can be a challenging process. Luckily, there are multiple approaches someone can take to get the process started. Traveling happens to be one way people can work through their traumatic experience and find healing. Here’s how it works. 

Being Present

No matter where you travel, it’s hard to be anywhere but in the moment. As you enter a foreign environment, you leave your comfort zone and begin to focus intently on what’s happening around you. Intuition sharpens as smells, sounds, and sights become more vivid. 

This is the mindset where people have epiphanies and find inspiration. People gain new perspectives, become more aware, and often find themselves refreshed. Just like a vacation can help you destress from being overworked, the same elements can help you heal from trauma. 

Shifting Mood

People recovering after their personal injury claims often have a poor mood from missing work and the accident itself. Shifting that mood to a positive one isn’t always easy when you’re stuck at home, which is why traveling can help change the dynamic. 

New experiences, getting away from life’s worries, and enjoying a new location can all increase your mood and bring about healing. All of these things also focus your attention on the task of travel, which can help distract from the woes of your trauma. 

Self-Reflection

Traveling often involves time to relax and reflect. Whether you’re sitting on the beach watching the ocean waves or enjoying the peace and quiet of the woods, this is an excellent opportunity for self-reflection. 

As you clear your head, the difficulties you face from your trauma are easier to isolate and work through. People tend to see the bigger picture in relation to what’s causing them pain, making it easier to see a path through that pain towards a happier version of themselves. 

This trick works for more than just trauma, too. Professionals in psychology and at an employment law firm say that this type of self-reflection helps employees work through issues in the office and helps them identify when career changes need to be made. 

Cultivating Gratitude

Sometimes, trauma can cloud other aspects of life. Your pain may make it impossible to see the good around you. Traveling brings about a new perspective for most people, helping them realize what they have to be grateful for simply by removing them from their daily life. 

The ability to focus on these things and cultivate gratitude towards them can help increase your perception of the positives in your life, effectively overshadowing the negative elements that surround your trauma. It’s not a cure-all, but it does help to focus on the good things in life.