Frequently Asked Questions
What is a brain injury?
Any blow to the head that interrupts the proper functions of the brain can be thought of as a brain injury. Strokes and other medical conditions can also damage the brain, in some cases to a life-threatening degree.
How do brain injuries impact the body?
This isn’t an easy question because it is different for everyone and there are so many possible complications. Some brain injuries affect only one system of the body (sight or hearing, for example), while others damage multiple systems of the body thereby producing a wider array of symptoms.
What are some common symptoms?
Brain injuries can take many forms, but there are some common symptoms that should prompt medical intervention. Abrupt, severe dizziness or loss of coordination, slurred speech, impaired vision, severe head pain, or loss of consciousness are all possible indications of a brain injury and medical attention should be promptly pursued. Drastic changes in behavior or mood can also be indications of a brain trauma and should be investigated.
All of these complications, individually or combined, can be difficult to identify and define. Many survivors struggle to receive correct diagnoses and treatment of their symptoms.
How important is prompt diagnosis and treatment?
Simply put, time lost is brain lost. Delays in treatment can result in permanent complications or even a loss of life in more serious cases.
Are all brain injury symptoms permanent?
There is no universal answer to this question. Many survivors experience at least some degree of recovery from their initial symptoms but still face lifelong complications. Still others suffer drastic damage that cannot be reversed at all.
Why aren’t brain injuries better understood by the general public?
There hasn’t been anywhere near enough study or education about brain injuries. Only in the wake of publicity about brain trauma among pro football players has there been meaningful media coverage of this topic.
The lack of a spokesperson may be a significant factor in the lack of awareness. Christopher Reeve brought global attention to the plight of those with spinal cord injuries. Michael J. Fox has shined a spotlight on the struggles faced by those afflicted with Parkinson’s Disease. The TBI community doesn’t have such a readily recognized representative, and that may be what is required to spark the needed discussion about this serious problem.
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES / OTHER ORGANIZATIONS
Brain Injury Association of America
Some brain injury survivors develop spatial orientation disorders and cannot tolerate large spaces. If you had such a disorder, you might get dizzy just looking at this photo.
Copyright - Life Beyond Brain Injury - 2017