Meningitis is a life threatening illness that usually happens suddenly and unexpectedly. No matter what the outcome, the impact of the disease can leave people feeling overwhelmed, frightened and unsupported.
Most people will make a good recovery following a period of rest and recuperation. Over time, the physical effects of the illness, such as headaches and tiredness, will reduce. However, it’s not unusual for people to experience emotional difficulties during and after this recovery period. Anxiety about the time spent in hospital and the fear of possibly being ill again can cause distress.
People who are left with longer term, or permanent, after-effects may be facing significant changes to their work, school or home lives.
Emotional and behavioural changes can also be a result of an acquired brain injury caused by meningitis. Adapting to these changes, whilst also living with the physical impact of meningitis, can affect emotional wellbeing.
Parents, partners, other family members and friends of someone who has had meningitis can also be affected. The fear surrounding an unexpected, life-threatening illness and concerns about the outcome or longer term impact can cause stress and anxiety.
We can help
It's not unusual to feel isolated after meningitis and talking to someone can be a great help. Don’t face meningitis alone.