Category Description:

badge2Care and treatment of acquired and traumatic brain injury must address wide array of cognitive, emotional, behavioral, and physical symptoms.

What’s Your Story after Brain Injury

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After the trauma of a brain injury and all the changes it brings to your life and the life of your family, it’s important to discover the story of your new life. We humans respond deeply to story. We can’t help it. We’re not only natural-born story tellers, we are stories. Before your brain injury, or the injury of a loved one, you had one story of your life. Now you have a new one, which can be confusing, frightening, even incomprehensible. Uncovering the story of your post-injury life will help you understand what has happened, how you are reacting, and the actions you can take to enhance your life today and in the future. One good way to do this is to write in a journal.

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The 80% Rule After Brain Injury

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Fatigue is a common issue following brain injury. Generally, we encourage people to get lots of sleep and to take rest breaks during the day. When a person doesn’t listen to cues their mind or body gives them (i.e. feel as though you have hit the wall; can’t take in anymore information etc.) the physical and emotional fatigue can result in unintended consequences (i.e. outbursts, tears, anger, agitation).

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Writing for Relief after Brain Injury

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My memoir, Learning by Accident, was not a book I had ever planned to write. Living the story consumed me. Writing the book saved me. Somehow, writing about my husband’s traumatic brain injury helped me make sense of the chaotic nature of my new world, a world that changed in every way the moment a car hit Hugh as he rode his bicycle home on a sunny April afternoon in 2002.

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Writing and Karate after Brain Injury

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First, Karate. The picture I’ve enclosed is found on my FaceBook page and shows me and my instructor posing the day I was awarded my black belt. Here is the story, but I also have to tell you I am accident prone. Before the truck ran over my car (December 2007) leading to my TBI condition I had many other accidents. One that I will mention occurred way back in 1980. I was a karate student, brown belt advancing to black belt level. A few weeks before my black belt test, I was seriously injured in a sparring accident. My left knee was kicked out from under me leading to tears in both anterior cruciate ligaments and the medial collateral ligament. I gave up on karate and I missed a whole semester of graduate school. Scroll down many years (about 20) and I move to NJ and have two young children. As a family fun activity I enroll us in a local Karate club. The children drop out after two or three years but I stuck with it (again). I was once again a brown belt nearing the time for my black belt examination. Then the truck ran me over and I was out of commission, so to speak, for quite a long time.

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Reconnecting with Joy After Brain Injury

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So many things in life give us joy. From precious babies and newborn animals to music, painting, photography, sculpting, gardening, mountain climbing and cooking, people experience joy. When you suffer a loss, it snuffs the joy out of your life and it makes it difficult to put a smile on your face.

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Understanding Brain Injury as a Chronic Disease

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Many brain injury survivors live many years after the injury. Some continue to make progress and do well, while others develop more health problems. There is a new way of thinking about brain injury that has implications for all survivors and their caregivers. The Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) is striving to have brain injury reclassified as a chronic disease.

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Motivation!

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It is very challenging to get motivated when you are not feeling good about your situation. It’s normal for individuals to experience a drop in motivation following loss. Survivors may also experience a lack of motivation resulting from the injury to their brain. In any instance, a lack of motivation can result in the person becoming isolated and taking a direct hit to their self-esteem. It’s a vicious circle… don’t feel motivated, feel awful about myself, feel awful about myself… don’t feel motivated. Breaking the cycle isn’t easy, but it can be done. It requires determination, creativity and most of all, patience.

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Dependence, Independence, Interdependence after Brain Injury

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In the contract work that I do in the brain injury field, our goal is always to ‘work ourselves out of a job.’ This means that we strive to help the individual move towards independence and to living a life that is filled with meaningful activity, positive interactions with others, and achievements.

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Ten Tips for Caregivers in the “Multiple Transitions” Stage

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Family caregivers move through several seasons or stages as their loved one progresses through treatment in the intensive care unit, to inpatient rehabilitation, and finally back home. But we know that’s only a new beginning- not a finish line. Each stage comes with its own emotional responses and tasks to learn.

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Write Your Own Story – It’s Your Brain Injury

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People often tell me they would like to write a book or an article about their personal story. The problem is they don’t know where to begin. Writing a book is a tremendous undertaking and putting together an article is challenging too. However, keep your eye on the prize because there is power in your story… power to heal you and to inspire others. Below are some suggestions to help you get started:

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