Category Description:

badge2Symptoms of brain injury can range from loss of consciousness and coma to changes in physical, cognitive, emotional, social and behavioral abilities and skills. The range and severity of symptoms are different for each person as each brain injury is unique.

These blog articles discuss the variety of symptoms from the persepctive of clinicians, survivors and families. They give readers a broader understanding of the complexity of brain injury symptoms and their consequences for a meaningful life.

Brain Injury and Substance Abuse

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One out of two adolescents or adults with brain injury abuses substances like alcohol or drugs. Some survivors trying to cope with depression, social isolation and other losses turn to alcohol or drugs. Abusing these substances can slow or complicate recovery.

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A Note from Debbie

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I was desperate. I had sustained a brain injury in an automobile accident and was struggling to deal with everyday living activities. After almost burning down my home twice by leaving cooking units on unattended, I finally realized I had a problem and that it wouldn’t go away. Everything in my life that used to be so easy was now almost impossible to do without putting myself, others or property at risk.

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Road to “Recovery” after Brain Injury

I’ve been closely following the progress reports on Congresswoman “Gabby” Giffords. Frankly, I’ve delayed writing about her brain injury because, like all of us across the nation, I was horrified by this tragic shooting. As I followed the reports on her condition day by day on the morning and nightly news, I simply could not find the words to express what I was feeling.

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Students with Traumatic Brain Injury

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Traumatic brain injury is the leading cause of disability among children and youth. Students returning to school with traumatic brain injuries may have an entire range of physical, cognitive, behavioral, social and emotional challenges. Exposure to education can aid in the recovery of these functions. Much as schools promote learning, recovery is a re-learning process, so it is important for educators in the school system to provide support and services.

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Violence as a Cause and a Consequence of Traumatic Brain Injury

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There is an overlap between traumatic brain injury (TBI) and violence which is an important yet little understood problem. The exact number of violence-related TBIs each year is not known, but the CDC estimates 11% of TBI deaths, hospitalizations and emergency room visits combined are related to assaults.

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Cognitive Rehabilitation Therapy – How Are We Really Treating Our Service Members and Veterans with Brain Injuries?

Cognitive rehabilitation for persons with traumatic brain injury has been examined and questioned in terms of its outcomes and cost effectiveness. The civilian sector has worked long and hard with insurance companies, Medicaid and Medicare to recognize the benefits of cognitive rehabilitation therapy. Now Tricare, the insurance program that covers service members and veterans, is refusing to cover cognitive rehabilitation at the time when brain injury is recognized as the signature wound of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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Holidays Aren’t All Ho! Ho! Ho! after Brain Injury

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Holidays can be especially hard for all family members when a spouse, child, parent or sibling has a brain injury. In this brain injury blog, Marilyn Lash recalls how feelings of loss resurfaced in her family as her injured brother struggled to cope with the stress of holidays.

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Teens and Sex after Brain Injury

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Last week, my husband and I went to our first high school football game in our home town. It’s been a long time – I won’t even tell you how long – since either of us have been teenagers. High school sure has changed a lot since our day! We were in culture shock at what passes for the new norms of dress and style – talk about peer pressure!

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Adolescence, Brain Injury, and Sexuality

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The transition from childhood to adolescence is fraught with many physical and emotional changes. It can be a difficult time for the child and parents alike. Most families experience a period of major adjustment to the child’s changing mannerisms, quest for privacy and greater independence. When a child experiences a brain injury, either at a younger age or during this period of transition, it commonly creates many more problems than a child arriving at this age without a brain injury.

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Sexuality after Brain Injury

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One of the common consequences of traumatic brain injury (TBI) is sexual dysfunction. Unfortunately addressing sexual issues as a component of rehabilitation is often overlooked for a variety of reasons.

“Sexuality is an integral part of the human experience” (Sander). We are all sexual beings and sexuality is part of our life experience. Social mores and cultural differences make sexuality a taboo issue in some societies. Many therapists and other direct care providers in hospital and rehabilitation settings are untrained about sexuality and persons with disabilities. Their personal values often interfere with their ability or comfort level discussing the topic. When sexuality is overlooked as part of rehabilitation, sexual dysfunction can become an issue that is very difficult for families to understand. Social isolation, common for persons after TBI, limits opportunities for developing meaningful relationships.

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