Surviving and Living with a Traumatic Brain Injury
March is Brain Injury Awareness
Today, I am talking with Stephanie Kita, and she’s going to tell us about surviving from and living with a Traumatic Brain Injury.
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Since March happens to be Brain Injury Awareness Month, I thought we should start with some statistics:
- Every 21 seconds an infant, child, teenager, or adult in the U.S. sustains a traumatic brain injury—when you do the math, it means that each day, 4,100 individuals sustain a traumatic brain injury. ~ Texas Brain Injury Alliance
- Brain injury has become a national epidemic
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a major cause of death and disability in the United States.
- Those who survive a TBI can face effects that last a few days, months or the rest of their lives.
Some of the Effects of TBI can include:
- Cognitive Deficits in attention; learning and memory; executive functions like planning and decision-making; language and communication; reaction time; reasoning and judgment
- Behavioral/ Emotional Delusions; hallucinations; severe mood disturbance; sustained irrational behavior; agitation; aggression; confusion; impulsivity; social inappropriateness
- Motor Changes in muscle tone; paralysis; impaired coordination; changes in balance, or trouble walking
- Sensory Changes in vision and hearing; sensitivity to light
- Somatic signs and symptoms a Headache; fatigue; sleep disturbance; dizziness; chronic pain
- These issues not only affect individuals but can have lasting effects on families and communities.
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and Autism Spectrum Disorder share not only similar symptoms but also some of the same biologic mechanisms that cause these symptoms.
Prominent symptoms of both disorders include gastrointestinal problems, learning difficulties, seizures, and sensory processing disruption.
I’ve mentioned these “shared similar symptoms” in order to raise awareness and understanding.
Stephanie is going to share how she suffered a Traumatic Brain Injury and as she puts it, She is more than a Brain Injury Survivor, she a daughter, sister, a friend and so much more.
Biggest Takeaways You Don’t Want to Miss:
- Surprising ways my friends reacted
- A half-hour of concentration for a person with TBI equals four hours of concentration for those without TBI (i.e. the typical brain)
- Smells can cause anxiety or panic attacks
- Brain Injury is not a character flaw
Check out these podcast highlights:
- Similar symptoms to ASD [4:23]
- Ways to stick up for yourself [8:58]
- Advice regarding what parents should NOT do [12:01]
- What not to say to someone with a Traumatic Brain Injury. [14:20]
- My feelings about life (sometimes) [16:02-16:55]
- Tip for others with Traumatic Brain Injury [18:07]
Links mentioned in this episode:
Sources: Anstey et al., 2004; Asikainen, Kaste, and Sarna, 1999; Clinchot, Bogner, Mysiw, Fugate, and Corrigan, 1998; Dikmen, Machamer, Fann, and Temkin, 2010; Granacher, 2005; Katz, White, Alexander, and Klein, 2004; Meares et al., 2011; Orff, Ayalon, and Drummond, 2009; Riemann and Guskiewicz, 2000; Riggio and Wong, 2009; Rogers and Read, 2007; Schmidt, Register-Mihalik, Mihalik, Kerr, and G
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here in this podcast do not necessarily reflect the opinion Parenting Special Needs magazine
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