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Video: Supporting clients with psychological injuries means finding new ways of communicating

Head of personal injury Jill Greenfield and psychiatrist Dr Mark Salter discuss how the stress of lockdown affects all of us.

Mark explains that, as humans with brains, we like stability, predictability and planning for the future. When that gets taken away from us, anxiety invariably kicks in and primitive instincts can ride roughshod over reason.
On the challenges of using communication tools such as Zoom and BlueJeans to speak to vulnerable clients from afar, Mark says: “It’s very, very hard to reach out to establish and maintain an empathic, understanding, caring, even some may say loving, link with someone at the other end when you are not in the room.

“Those squeaks of the chair, those quiet sighs, those breaks of vision, those silent moments.

“Notice how silence seems so long on Skype, Blue Jeans, Zoom.

“It’s hard to read the meaning of silence because the silence is devoid of its context and that is a very unconscious, subtle manifestation of this creeping unfamiliarity which has already got us on edge as it is.

Jill adds: “Some of clients are physically and psychologically injured following events such as terrorist attack, sexual abuse or serious injury on the roads. They rely on support from therapists such as Mark to help them recover. It's vital that support doesn't go away during lockdown. My team, Mark and other therapists like him offer invaluable contact via online platforms to keep people going. 

"Mark explains how we're all looking for a new normal at the moment and how exhausting it is keeping up the appearance of managing it so well over communication apps such as Zoom. Imagine how even more stressful that is for people with injuries."

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