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How To Explain A Brain Injury Disability

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3. Understanding Traumatic Brain Injury, its Causes, Effects and Classifications – Brain Injury 101

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Features Relating To Change In Outcome Between One And 57 Years

Change in occurrence of a disabled outcome was characterised as either improvement from a category of moderate or severe disability at one year to good recovery at 57years or conversely worsening from good recovery at one year to disabled at 57 .

Improvement from Disabled to Good outcome was not strongly associated with age at injury , sex severity of injury , previous head injury , other brain illness . Likewise, deterioration from Good to Disabled outcome was not strongly associated with these early features , sex , severity of injury , previous head injury , other brain illness . There were however, strong associations between cognitive and emotional factors assessed 57 years after injury and change in GOSE category between one and 57 years. This was investigated using separate t tests to compare Disabled at one and 57 years with Disabled at one year improving to Good at 57 years .). Improvement from Disabled to Good was strongly associated with lower selfratings for depression, anxiety, and stress and with higher selfesteem.

Table 4Cognitive and emotional findings at 57 year follow up in participants who were disabled at one year

Disabled at one year and persisting disability at 57 year Disabled at 1 year improving to Good recovery at 57 year p Value

Table 5Cognitive and emotional findings at 57 year follow up in participants who made a good recovery at one year

Status Of Cohort 57 Years After Injury

Of the 219 survivors assessed at 57 years, 42 were severely disabled, 73 moderately disabled and 104 had made a good recovery. Disability was frequently found , at a rate similar to that found at one year . Sixty three participants had improved but 55 deteriorated.

In terms of activities of daily living, 87% of 161 participants were not disabled and less than 4% severely disabled . Information on employment at 57year follow up was available for 217 participants. Before injury, 160 of these were working or seeking employment, 49 were unemployed, and for eight work was not appropriate. This compares to 121 , 72 , and 24 at 57year follow up.

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What Can Be Done To Improve Attention

  • Focus on one task at a time.
  • Break large or complex tasks into smaller tasks.
  • Practice attention skills on simple but practical activities in a quiet room. Gradually make tasks harder. For example, read a short story, balance a checkbook, or work in a slightly noisier environment.
  • Take breaks when doing tasks that require a lot of mental energy. Return to the task when youre more refreshed.
  • Talk with a doctor if you think your mood is making it harder to concentrate.
  • Get plenty of rest. Talk to your doctor about any problems you have sleeping.

Learning And Memory Challenges

Invisible Disability  Brain Injury Awareness Week 2020

Learning ability, knowledge, memory, attention, problem solving, organization, and communication can all be impacted by TBI . Trouble focusing on homework and lack of motivation to complete assignments could be a sign of an invisible disability. After a TBI, it can be harder to remember things like peoples names or where objects were placed. Ways to combat these memory changes include studying with flashcards, making to-do lists, and using smartphone apps.

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How Is Brain Damage Diagnosed

When diagnosing a brain injury, a doctor will first consider the persons symptoms and the events that led to their injury. For example, they may ask if other people saw the person lose consciousness for a time period.

They will also consider if the person is acting very differently from their usual behavior or if the person is speaking and responsive to others.

Doctors will also perform other types of testing to determine the extent of an injury. Examples of these tests include:

  • Imaging studies. CT scans or other imaging studies can reveal tumors, bleeding, or other damage to the brain.
  • Blood tests. Testing for signs of infection and electrolyte imbalances can reveal the causes and effects of traumatic and nontraumatic injuries.
  • Brain evaluations. Doctors have developed a number of tests that target certain areas of the brain, such as memory, problem-solving, and concentration.

There are many potential causes of brain damage. Additional testing may depend on a persons symptoms and type of injury.

Are Children And Adults Affected Differently

Very much so.2 Most of us think of children as a work in progress, and the experts agree.3 The human brain carries on developing until we are in our 20’s,4 and some research suggests it goes on for many years after that.

If part of the brain is injured during its earlier stages of development, a child might not go on to pick up some of the skills they otherwise might have.5 Or as one acquired brain injury expert puts it, the injury happens when the brain has unfinished business.

Also, we know that some of the effects of acquired brain injury may not come to the surface until the injured part starts to be used.6 An example might be a five-year-old who has an injury to their frontal lobes .

Its the part of the brain responsible for decision-making, judgment and problem-solving. And the effects of the injury might not become clear until the child is around 12, when they start to use these skills more.7, 8

The difficulties children have might seem to contradict what our common sense might tell us that a young brain would be better able to bounce back to full strength.9 Children may appear to make a full physical recovery,10 but the effects of a brain injury may take weeks, months and sometimes years to come to the surface.11 It is because the changes and difficulties surrounding acquired brain injury are hard to spot that it is sometimes called the hidden disability. 12, 13

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Treating And Living With Tbi

An injured brain also has a tendency to swell, so if there is no room in the skull to expand, the swollen brain may start pushing against the eye sockets. The optic nerve eventually gets pinched, and eyesight is affected. A surgeon might drill holes into a skull to test cranial pressure. If the swelling is too extreme, the only option is to create an escape hatch by sawing away a portion of the skull.

The neurosurgeon is in charge of protecting the brain through medical procedures, but the survivor has to manage life with the effects of the TBI. Everyone reacts differently, depending in part on the severity of the injury, the quality of their care, and the strength of the social network around them. Many survivors feel pulled in different directions, feeling at times that the injury has made them less than what they were, and at other times that they can integrate TBI into their lives in a positive way. People with TBI are forced to confront a whole series of personal questions: How does my injury really affect me? Can I regain the things Ive lost? What am I other than my brain? How can I make the most of my life?

What Are Brain Disorders

How to Win Social Security Disability for a Traumatic Brain Injury

Your brain is your bodys control center. Its part of the nervous system, which also includes the spinal cord and a large network of nerves and neurons. Together, the nervous system controls everything from your senses to the muscles throughout your body.

When your brain is damaged, it can affect many different things, including your memory, your sensation, and even your personality. Brain disorders include any conditions or disabilities that affect your brain. This includes conditions that are caused by:

  • illness
  • genetics
  • traumatic injury

This is a broad category of disorders, which vary greatly in symptoms and severity. Keep reading to learn about some of the largest categories of brain disorders.

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What Should I Ask The Doctors And Other Health Professionals Who Are Treating My Loved One

  • What is my loved ones level of consciousness, and what information and tests were used to determine the diagnosis and prognosis?

You or other decision makers may have to make decisions about treatment in the first hours and days after the injury. These decisions may need to be made based on unclear information. This can be scary and overwhelming. You may feel more confident when a disorder-of-consciousness diagnosis is based on both bedside exams and objective tests . Doctors may deliver a poor prognosis with certainty. Ask questions about what this means. Often, more specialized bedside exams, tests, and time are needed. This is especially important when deciding whether to remove your loved one from life support. If a definite poor prognosis is given, ask the health care team to give you the full range of possible outcomes, and ask what data they are basing the prognosis on. You may also want to consult a disability specialist with expertise and experience in TBI rehab. Consider what they say along with information from the health care team. These specialists can offer an expert opinion about your loved ones diagnosis and prognosis. They can also help match your loved one with the right rehab services.

  • Are there any other medical conditions that can be treated to help promote my loved ones recovery?
  • What are the care options for people with severe TBI?
  • How is my loved one progressing, and what is the care team doing today to manage his or her condition?

Get The Facts About Tbi

A TBI affects how the brain works

A traumatic brain injury, or TBI, is an injury that affects how the brain works. It may be caused by a:

  • Bump, blow, or jolt to the head, or
  • Penetrating injury to the head

There are three main types of TBI:

TBI is a major cause of death and disability1

There were about 61,000 TBI-related deaths in the United States in 2019.3 Thats about 166 TBI-related deaths every day.

TBIs affect the lives of people of all ages. Anyone can experience a TBI, but data suggest that some groups are at greater risk of dying from a TBI or experiencing long-term health problems after the injury.4 Examples of groups who are more likely to be affected by TBI, include:

  • Racial and ethnic minorities5
  • People who are in correctional and detention facilities8
  • Survivors of intimate partner violence9
  • People living in rural areas10

People most commonly get TBIs from a fall, firearm-related injury, motor vehicle crash, or an assault

Research shows that:

For more detailed information on the leading ways people get TBIs and the groups of people most likely to get a TBI, check out CDCs TBI data reports.

A TBI may lead to short- or long-term health problems

A TBI during childhood may affect brain development

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Common Reactions For Carers

All carers respond to the demands of caring for their loved one in their own way. Common reactions are feeling overwhelmed, confused and shocked. There are no right or wrong feelings. These feelings are a natural and normal reaction to caring.

Guiltcan be a common feeling. Carers may feel responsible for the brain injury occurring, not wanting to be a carer, losing their temper or being embarrassed by the person being cared for. Carers may particularly feel guilty about taking a break from caring or placing the person in residential care.

Angercan arise when someone is the sole carer or others in the family dont do their fair share. They may become frustrated when faced with regular challenging behaviours, angry outbursts, self-centredness or many of the other issues that can arise after a traumatic brain injury.

Resentmentcan arise from lack of support when friends dont make contact any more, support services dont provide enough help and the focus always is on the person with a traumatic brain injury or other type of brain disorder.

Fearand anxiety about the future are common? How much with the injured family member recover? What will happen if the family cant cope? Legal issues such as a compensation claim can be very stressful.

What Are The Regulations I Need To Know About

Traumatic Brain Injury Power Point

The Ministry of Education has developed regulations that must be followed by school boards/schools in supporting students with exceptionalities. For a list of all the Regulations see Special Education in Ontario, Kindergarten to Grade 12 above. One of the most significant regulations for parents to be aware of is Regulation 181/98.

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Learning And Remembering New Information

People with TBI may have trouble learning and remembering new information and events. People with TBI may also have problems remembering entire events or conversations. When this happens, the mind will sometimes try to fill in the gaps of missing information with things that did not really happen. These false memories are not lies. False memories are the brains attempt to use the best information it has to make up for what is missing.

Tips For Teachers And Parents

Teachers, Oklahomas State Department of Education advises giving students with TBIs extra time to complete tests, as well as breaking down complex directions into smaller steps, providing directions in writing and teaching a student to use a day planner. Using a day planner to keep track of assignments and schedules can help the student stay organized and avoid confusion.

Perhaps the most important tip for teachers and parents to consider is to take the time to get to know each child as an individual. Parents, TBI assessment offers an ideal opportunity for such a process. Before your son or daughter returns to the classroom after a traumatic brain injury he or she should go through an evaluation process to create an individualized education plan and identify which special education services might prove beneficial. To learn more about IEPs read The IEP Process Explained.

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Where Can I Get Documentation For A Traumatic Brain Injury

When working with any diagnostician, keep in mind that the UW does have specific requirements regarding the qualifications of diagnosticians and the type of diagnostic testing to be done. Prior to seeking your assessment we recommend that you share these Documentation Guidelines with your diagnostician before initiating the evaluation.

Considerations For Audiological And Vestibular Assessment

The Little Bird Who Forgot How To Fly: Caring For A Child With Traumatic Brain Injury

Comorbiditiesincluding memory and attention deficits, tinnitus, dizziness, and anxietycan make it difficult to attribute auditory complaints to auditory-only processing deficits and may confound audiologic test results.

Balance is a multisensory function. Therefore, during vestibular assessment, clinicians working with individuals with blast trauma need to consider several causes of postural instability, including TBI, orthostatic hypotension, cervical vertigo, visual deficits, possible side effects of ototoxic drugs, and vestibular pathology .

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Acquired Brain Injury Explained

This section offers an introduction to acquired brain injury and some of its effects and includes information films. Thousands of children and their families are affected by acquired brain injury every year.1 It is often shortened to ABI. The acquired part means simply that the child wasnt born with their injury it is the result of an accident or illness that has happened later.

Acquired brain injury may be the result of:

  • Traumatic brain injury the result of an impact to the head. Examples might be a car accident or a fall.
  • Non-traumatic brain injury some professionals call this a traumatic brain injury. It is often the result of something like meningitis or a brain tumour.

One way of thinking about it is to say traumatic brain injury is the result of things happening outside the body, such as a blow to the head.

Non-traumatic brain injury is the result of things going on inside the body, such as a stroke or a lack of oxygen.

Confusingly, you may hear some professionals talk about a traumatic brain injury as ABI. But from here on in, well be talking about ABI acquired brain injury as a whole.

Acquired brain injury in children is sometimes called paediatric acquired brain injury by healthcare professionals.

Living With A Brain Injury A Film By Nescot Creative Media

This film was made by students at Nescot, Epsom’s college of further and higher education. It aims to help families understand more about the effects of brain injury. Interviews take place with a young adult, ten years since her brain injury, and a therapist from The Children’s Trust’s Brain Injury Community Service. Date released: February 2019.

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Timing Of A Social Security Decision On Tbi

TBIs are different than most other illnesses or diseases in that it can be difficult to make a long-term prognosis about an individual’s prospects. Social Security has taken into account the high variability associated with TBIs. With many other disabilities, applicants cannot receive disability benefits until they have been disabled for over twelve months. However, with TBIs, an individual who sustains profound neurological impairment may be found disabled within three months post injury. If a finding of disability is not possible three months post injury, the applicant can be reassessed when evidence of neurological or mental impairments is received by Social Security. If there is still not finding of disability, an individual may be reassessed again at least six months post injury, if Social Security receives new medical evidence about your TBI.

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