Category Description:

badge2Living with brain injury, whether it is caused by a traumatic injury, stroke, tumor, infection, or illness, is a lifelong journey for survivors, families, and caregivers. The Brain Injury Blog is about more than the care, treatment and rehabilitation of those who survive brain injury. It is about the journey of brain injury from the perspectives of those who live with it as well as those who provide care, treatment and support. Survival is just the first step in living with brain injury. Please join us in the journey of hope after brain injury.

Preventing and Healing Compassion Fatigue by Janet M. Cromer, RN, LMHC, CCFE

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Compassion fatigue is a form of complete exhaustion that results from the prolonged stress of caring for a very sick or traumatized person. Compassion fatigue depletes our physical, emotional, and spiritual reserves, so interventions must replenish those dimensions. It even interferes with how the body and mind function. Living with this extreme stress is dangerous because it can contribute to medical illness, mood disturbances, behavior changes, and substance abuse. Compassion fatigue builds up slowly as the stress response stays in overdrive for weeks, or even months.

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Modalities For TBI Improvement by William C. Jarvis, Ed.D.

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Traumatic Brain Injury improvement can be maximized when the TBI survivor uses strategies at home. Bill Jarvis has developed specific strategies for the Jarvis Rehabilitation Method that center around different modalities of effort. These modalities are: Speaking-Hearing; Seeing; Feeling; Thinking; Experiencing. He explains how and why these strategies have both direct and indirect benefits for continuing rehabilitation and progress over time.

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Cooking with Brain Injury by Cheryl Green and William Alton

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This short film by Cheryl Green infuses humor into daily struggles of life after traumatic brain injury. Cooking with Brain Injury shows how the ordinary task of cooking can become a challenging puzzle for the survivor of a brain injury. True events are shown in style of a network TV cooking show where the cooks are stymied by a piece of salmon and their own unpredictable obstacles.

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Wounded Families in the Aftermath of PTSD: The Invisible Emotional Wounds by Marilyn Lash, M.S.W.

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For so many returning service members and veterans dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the question may be, “Are your emotions ready for intimacy?” Sex and intimacy are very different. While sex is a physical act, intimacy is an emotional connection. loss of intimacy. Tt is the elephant in the room that too often is not discussed with family, friends, physicians, or counselors. When the connection between loss of intimacy and PTSD is not understood, too many partners “take it personally” and feel unloved, unworthy, unattractive, and rejected. Whether the demands for sex are constant or sex is avoided for long periods, loss of intimacy can undermine the very core of a couple’s relationship.

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My Concussion Changed Me By Catz LeBlanc

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Catz LeBlanc describes the impact of a concussion she sustained as a sports injury that was soon after compounded by a car crash leaving her unable to work or function from day to day. Suddenly she was not the competent independent woman she knew but found herself struggling to understand what had happened to her. Losing her friends and family and her job was tough enough, but losing her ability to think clearly and negotiate the cognitive challenges of daily life was devastating. Her reflections and insights about what it means to have a brain injury and the misperceptions of others about “what was wrong with me” have led her to asking many new questions.

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Helping Children with TBI Succeed in School by Janet Tyler, PhD

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Children and adolescents with traumatic brain injury (TBI) often face many cognitive, academic, and behavioral challenges after their injury. New difficulties in school may arise as school work becomes more complex with each passing grade. By working closely with teachers and educators, parents can help ensure that their child has the best possible chance of succeeding in school. Dr. Janet Tyler discusses how parents and teachers can collaborate to learn about brain injury, how good parenting skills at home can make a difference, and the benefits of tutoring. Parents and educators will find this article practical and helpful.

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TBI and PTSD: Navigating the Perfect Storm by Marilyn Lash, M.S.W.

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Traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are separate conditions but many of their symptoms overlap. It can be hard for the person who is living with the dual diagnosis of TBI and PTSD and for family and caregivers to separate them. Just as meteorologists predict “the perfect storm” when unusual and unprecedented conditions move in to create catastrophic atmospheric events, so can the combination of PTSD and TBI be overpowering and destructive for all in its path. The person with TBI and PTSD is living in a state unlike anything previously experienced. For the family, home may no longer the safe haven but an unfamiliar front with unpredictable and sometimes frightening currents and events. This article describes similarities and differences with PTSD and TBI.

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Brain Injury and Grief: Fact or Fiction? by Janelle Breese Biagioni

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The grief that follows a brain injury often perplexes relatives, friends, and coworkers. After all, if the person survived the brain injury, shouldn’t the reaction be joy, relief and gratitude? Janelle Breese Biagioni explores the meaning of grief and loss after TBI and why mourning is so important for emotional healing.

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The Slow Crawl of Brain Injury Recovery by David Grant

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David Grant describes his journey of brain injury recovery to find a “new normal” after he was broadsided while cycling in 2010. Entering the uncharted territory of specialists and hospitals, his cognitive challenges continued over time and increased his stress and anxiety. New difficulties with speech and memory undermined his sense of self and ability to work, jeopardizing his future. His insights into life as a survivor of a brain injury bring new insights and meaning to his life now.

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Mapping New Directions in Caregiving by Janet M. Cromer, RN, MA, LMHC

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Janet Cromer has professional and personal experience as a caregiver. Having survived caring for her husband after his anoxic brain injury, she uses her expertise to help families recognize and manage the stresses and rewards of caregiving, especially when faced with the cognitive, social and behavioral changes that so often accompany a traumatic or acquired brain injury.

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