Archive for the ‘TBI’ Category

Can a Traumatic Brain Injury Worsen Over Time?

Graphic of the human brain. TryMunity

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The immediate aftermath of a traumatic brain injury can easily be the most challenging and physically taxing time of a person’s life. Afterward, the extensive prescribed treatment and physical therapy for your injury takes time, but ultimately aims to result in gradual improvement. However, there are aspects of TBI that may not improve as a survivor ages, and in fact may worsen, depending on a person’s specific injury severity. It is especially important to always note any changes physically or behaviorally, and visit your doctor regularly.

What Was the Cause of Your Injury?

Depending on a multitude of factors, the nature of the accident that caused your traumatic brain injury will be a determinant of whether or not your sustained injuries can worsen. This is because the initial depth of the accident may cause lasting brain damage, especially if you experienced an open-head injury. Every person’s case is different because everyone’s accident was different; no two people will experience the same amount of force to their head or identical events that will guarantee them to recover in the same way. One person’s condition may worsen and another’s may not for a million possible reasons.

Aging May Be the Most Significant Reason

As a person with a traumatic brain injury ages, the worsening of their condition could be due to the more rapid degeneration of brain cells. As people age, they become more fragile. Fragility is especially a concern for those TBI survivors whose walking abilities were affected after the injury – there is a greater risk of falling and injuring themselves further. New injuries are one of the major reasons that traumatic brain injuries can worsen. Additionally, health events like new medical conditions, a stroke, a seizure, and others are all reasons that TBIs can become exacerbated instead of continuing to get better.

Join TryMunity Today

If you or someone you love has been affected, perhaps permanently, by a traumatic injury, join TryMunity. Created by a family that experienced a TBI first-hand, this online community is an exclusive one for survivors and their loved ones everywhere to be able to connect and learn from one another’s journeys. On the site, members can network, share their unique stories, update those around them on their recovery progress, and more. The reason this incredible nonprofit was created was to give traumatic brain injury victims an outlet all their own and to provide a space where they can find others going through similar challenges, and know that they are not alone. For more information and to join, visit community.trymunity.com.

Could Symptoms Eventually Disappear After a Traumatic Brain Injury?

Doctors examining a patient’s x-ray of their head. TryMunity.

Photo by David Tadevosian for Shutterstock

When someone experiences a traumatic brain injury, their world is instantly altered. All of a sudden, they are thrust into a life or death experience that, if survived, leaves behind scarring much deeper than what may be physically seen. There is almost always a longer-term recovery process due to the vitality of the brain’s health, and it may be some time before normalcy for the victim is restored. But is this a permanent state? Could symptoms of traumatic brain injury lessen significantly over time? The good news is that there is hope for many TBI patients to be able to handle their injury as a chronic, manageable condition, based, of course, on the severity.

The Severity of the Injury

Traumatic brain injury is classified into two types based on the incident itself. A person can have either an open-head injury or a closed-head one. Both are high-risk and can permanently alter the condition of the brain. The biggest dangers of an open-head TBI are exposure of the brain to debris and the environment, items lodging themselves inside of the organ, or losing pieces. Closed-head injuries can be just as damaging due to the movement of the brain within the skull upon impact, causing swelling inside and pressure that may need to be relieved. The extremity of the injury is telling as to whether or not the victim may be able to treat it as a chronic injury rather than an entirely debilitating one.

What Your Life Looks Life After the Injury

In either kind of TBI, the goal of making a full or almost full recovery depends on the extent of the accident you experienced and how you handle the kind of challenges you are now faced with afterward. The treatment and therapy your doctor says you need to complete along your recovery journey is crucial to keep up with, as this is a major determinant of a traumatic brain injury survivor’s long-term well-being. With continued treatment and perseverance, there is hope that a TBI victim can regain their life.

Join TryMunity

TryMunity was created to be a social network that provides support and encouragement to victims of traumatic brain injury and their families. Through the site, you can connect with TBI victims everywhere; make friends, share stories, share your recovery progress, and so much more. Join today at community.trymunity.com/.

Traumatic Brain Injury Signs You Should Never Ignore

Stress to someone’s brain. TryMunity, Texas

Photo by Sebastian Kaulitzki for Shutterstock.

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is happening much more frequently nowadays, but it can be difficult to know exactly what symptoms to look for. If you are in an accident or injure your head in some way, you have to be very vigilant about noticing anything that feels “off” or just not right afterwards, and make note of these symptoms or incidents. If you are a parent and the accident happened to your child, you need to be continuously monitoring them, and asking them about what they are feeling. This vigilance will help determine whether or not you are dealing with a traumatic brain injury, and also whether you should seek medical attention right away. There are symptoms that you must immediately seek proper care for. Here are some symptoms of traumatic brain injury that you should absolutely never ignore.

Extreme Physical Reactions

As described in this source, if you or another victim in an accident lost consciousness for over 6 hours, it is automatically classified as a traumatic brain injury. Common brain injury symptoms are dizziness, nausea and vomiting, and dilated pupils. If any of these reactions are extreme, that is not a promising sign – you should see someone right away. If you experience seizures and have never had them before, this is another serious indicator of TBI. After a TBI, you may also experience seizures from now on. Pay attention to your sleep patterns – if they are oddly irregular, consult with a professional.

Serious Cognitive or Sensory Reactions

Intense cognitive and sensory abnormalities after an injury are some of the most telling symptoms that someone may have a traumatic brain injury. In terms of cognition, obvious memory loss, confusion, being unable to process information normally, trouble with reading or writing abilities, and additional linguistic issues are major signs of deeper damage to the brain. If you have extreme losses in any of the five senses – sight, taste, touch, hearing, or your sense of smell – TBI may be the reason why.

TryMunity Is There for You

If you or someone close to you has been formally diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury, the story does not stop there. In fact, you now have an entire community available around you with that same common life condition. TryMunity was created to be an avenue for TBI survivors and their families to have an outlet to share their stories, connect to others around them, and support one another through their individual journeys of living with a traumatic brain injury. Join the online community of TryMunity today at http://www.trymunity.com/.

Stats About Traumatic Brain Injuries That Will Surprise You

description: Graphic of the human brain. TryMunity, Texas

Photo by gst for Shutterstock

When you or a loved one experiences a traumatic brain injury, your life will change in an instant. We certainly do not need to tell you that; this is, after all, a platform to share stories and experiences of life after a TBI. At TryMunity, we’re always looking for new information to share with you, and we think you may be surprised at some of the recent statistics about traumatic brain injury from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. These statistics represent important information to file away and keep in mind.

Falls Are Still the Leading Cause of TBI

Today, falls remain the leading TBI-causing accidents, and these falls can happen to anyone at any age. Falls are certainly not something that only impacts the elderly age group. In 2013, falls were responsible for 47% of TBI victims’ emergency visits, hospitalizations or deaths. In children ages 0-14, 54% of TBI-related hospitalizations, emergency visits or deaths were related to falls.

The Second Leading Cause

The second leading cause of traumatic brain injuries in 2013 (15% of emergency visits, hospitalizations or deaths) related to being struck by or against an object. This came as surprising; one would think that car-related incidents would be second, however, vehicle crashes represent the third leading cause of TBI today.

Over 2.8 Million TBI Cases

In the United States, there were over 2.8 million traumatic brain injury emergency visits, hospitalizations and deaths in the year 2013. That is an astronomical number alone, and does not take the rest of the world into account. In terms of the higher risk factors, the CDC’s report states that in both fatal and non-fatal TBI cases, the age group affected the most included people that were 75 and older. The number and wide variety of people affected sticks with us, and only further progresses our mission to create a large, meaningful community of TBI survivors.

Join TryMunity Today

Enduring traumatic brain injury is a unique experience that no one will truly understand unless it has happened to them. We know that, which is why we began TryMunity. We hope you will take advantage of the opportunity TryMunity provides – to meet new people, share your story, and grow a personal network. This is your space! Join online today at community.trymunity.com.

The Link Between Traumatic Brain Injury and Parkinson’s

Several recent scientific studies have revealed that the link between TBI and Parkinson’s disease may be stronger than we originally thought. According to a study conducted at the University of California, even a mild brain injury can increase the risk of developing Parkinson’s by as much as 56 percent. How high the risk becomes depends largely on the severity of the head injury, but the research is clear: once a TBI occurs, there’s a significant change in risk.

If you think that percentage seems high, it will probably seem even more dramatic once you consider the fact that roughly 5.3 million Americans are living with a TBI-related disability. Not only are these people leading lives that are drastically impacted by their injuries, but science now shows that some will likely face potential battles with Parkinson’s as they age.

However, neurophysiologists and brain researchers urge the public not to immediately associate TBI with Parkinson’s, simply because the risk remains fairly small in the grand scheme of things. Uninjured people have approximately a 0.2 percent chance of developing the disease, while injured individuals have a slightly higher chance, at 0.3 percent. Therefore, the average person with a TBI is only a bit more likely to develop Parkinson’s.

Still, it’s important for people living with TBI to be aware of all the risks and changes they may experience due to their injury. The more knowledge they are equipped with, the better able they are to seek proper medical attention and emotional support.

That’s where the non-profit organization TryMunity steps in. Their goal is to spread awareness about traumatic brain injuries, provide support to those who have survived them, and create a compassionate online community for those who have been touched by brain injuries. You can join their encouraging information group today by visiting www.trymunity.com.

Why Even “Mild” Traumatic Brain Injuries Are Concerning

A traumatic brain injury is diagnosed when a serious blow, jolt, or type of penetration damages the head and disrupts the normal function of the brain. Although not every head injury results in a TBI, millions of traumatic brain injuries take place in America every year.

A TBI can range from “mild” to “severe,” depending on the type of injury and how long it takes for the brain to return to its normal mental status. In the case of a mild TBI, the person’s mental status only changes briefly. They may black out for a short amount of time or develop a concussion, but they return to consciousness fairly quickly. With a severe TBI, a person may remain unconscious for an extended period of time, and even experience amnesia once they finally wake up.

Just because a mild traumatic brain injury is not as serious or life-impacting as a severe one does not mean it’s something to ignore. Mild cases are the most common form of TBI, and they are often overlooked at first because the person does not lose consciousness for long. However, as time progresses, worrisome symptoms may begin to emerge, including:

  • Unexplained mood changes
  • Slowness or difficulty when speaking and thinking
  • Sensitivity to bright light and loud noises
  • Nausea, and potentially confusion

If any of these symptoms present themselves after you or someone you know experiences a head injury, don’t brush them off – seek medical attention immediately. A preliminary diagnosis may have missed the TBI, but the sooner you receive proper help, the easier life will become.

Learn more about mild traumatic brain injuries, as well as severe ones, by joining the non-profit organization called TryMunity. They provide an online community where people affected by TBI can seek support, knowledge, and understanding. Sign up today at www.trymunity.com.

Traumatic Brain Injuries and American Veterans

Awareness of TBI in America has grown, but that doesn’t mean we’re adept at spotting the signs or understanding the history of these injuries. More often than not, traumatic brain injuries that occurred many years ago have been continuously mistaken for emotional or behavioral problems. This poses a specific problem for American veterans who return from their service with undiagnosed TBIs.

After a stint in the armed forces, it’s fairly common for people to return to their normal lives with a series of symptoms, including:

  • Heightened levels of anxiety and exhaustion
  • Difficulties concentrating on and remembering various tasks
  • Increased use of drugs and alcohol
  • Feelings of irritability, anger, or frustration

Although these symptoms might be purely psychological, if a veteran was involved in an accident, it’s important to consider that these signs could be related to a TBI. Even mild brain injuries can leave lasting impacts.

The statistics alone speak to how many veterans experience symptoms caused by TBI. Roughly 60 to 80 percent of soldiers who have been involved in blast injuries may have TBI alongside their other injuries. The Department of Defense, and the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center are learning more and more about how many veterans have experienced traumatic brain injuries, and it’s now more vital than ever to seek medical attention if you think you may have one.

If you or someone you know returned from service in the military, it might be time to make the connection between symptoms and possible underlying traumatic brain injury. With appropriate support, medical care, and knowledge, steps can be made to improve a veteran’s quality of life – and treat the true injury. Schedule an appointment with a doctor as soon as possible to start on the path towards recovery.

To learn more about traumatic brain injuries and receive support from others who have been affected by them, including injured veterans, join the non-profit organization TryMunity. Their online community is comprised of TBI survivors, their loved ones, and others who have been touched by traumatic brain injuries. Sign up today at www.trymunity.com.

Signs that Your Recovery from a TBI Is Progressing

Recovery from a serious traumatic brain injury (TBI) can be slow and extremely challenging. Depending on the individual and their particular injury, recovery can take anywhere from a few months to several years.

A large part of the recovery is centered on a person’s emotional healing. By monitoring the survivor’s state of mind, you can develop a deeper understanding of how they’re coping, and whether or not they’re making steps towards recovering.

Here are the most positive signs that your loved one is on the road to recovery.

 

  • They have stopped being overly confused. Initially, most TBI survivors seem extremely agitated and bewildered by what is happening. It’s as though they are stuck in a daze during the aftermath of the accident. This is a very difficult stage of recovery, but once it’s over, the person can truly start working towards leading an independent life.
  • They no longer deny that something is wrong. Many people are unwilling to immediately accept that their physical and mental health has changed. They may outright deny that they have any problems, or brush off their challenges as small issues. Once they stop doing that and start to actually accept their new state of life, they will find that they are moving towards recovery much quicker.
  • They are handling feelings of anger or depression. With such a traumatic event, depression is a very common symptom afterward. However, this can be treated by therapy and medications, and once a person learns to cope with their negative feelings, they’ll start to see more and more improvements.

Want to learn more about traumatic brain injuries and their recovery process? Do you have advice and stories to share with other TBI survivors and their families? Join TryMunity, an online support group for those touched by TBIs. Visit www.trymunity.com today to become a member.

Traumatic Brain Injury in Sports & the Precautions You Can Take

Sadly, more and more scientific evidence is indicating that traumatic brain injury is all too common amongst young athletes. High schoolers, middle schoolers, and even players in elementary school are sometimes experiencing a serious aftermath from the rough-and-tumble in sports. A blow to the head incurred during a game might not seem life-changing at first, but can sometimes lead to dangerous health concerns.

If your child plays sports and is in danger of incurring a traumatic brain injury, here are some steps you can take towards protecting their mind and body.

  1. Make sure that they are being trained properly. Every coach should be educating their players about the dangers of concussion and brain injury, so that they can better protect themselves and fellow athletes. They should also know how to recognize the signs of a serious injury so that they can call for medical attention if necessary.
  2. Give them access to good equipment. In sports like football, proper gear is 100 percent required. The full-contact aspect of the sport means that players are in constant danger of concussion and other injuries, so make sure that their headgear (helmets) and other protective equipment is kept up to par.
  3. Help them strengthen their necks. This may sound strange, but if it helps minimize the risk of a serious injury, it’s worth the effort. Here are some simple exercises that will reduce the amount of stress placed on the spine and skull.
  4. Monitor the players closely after a collision. Whenever an athlete strikes their head, don’t brush it off as a mere bump. Watch for signs of a serious concussion, and know when to seek help from an emergency room.

If you or someone you know has already suffered from a traumatic brain injury, join TryMunity. This online social community is for survivors and supporters who have stories, advice, suggestions, and questions to share with others. Visit www.trymunity.com today to learn more.

3 Ways Traumatic Brain Injury Support Groups Offer Psychological Support

Brain injuries can be life-changing, both physically and emotionally. The family members and friends of the person affected can offer invaluable support, but sometimes that’s not enough to keep everyone afloat in the wake of such a drastic accident.

That’s where support groups like TryMunity step in. This online community is full of people who have been directly affected by a traumatic brain injury. Whether you’ve incurred a TBI yourself or you’ve seen someone else you love deal with one, joining a support group can be a fantastic way to learn more about the problem and how to deal with it.

By getting involved with a traumatic brain injury support group, you will:

 

  • Become more educated. New information about TBI is always cropping up. Being in a support group is an excellent way to stay informed about new research, treatment options, and more. Furthermore, if you have questions about how to handle certain aspects of the injury and resulting lifestyle, you’ll be able to turn to others who have extensive knowledge and experience in the area.

 

  • Feel less isolated. Many people who are dealing with a TBI express feelings of loneliness and depression, as well as the desire to withdraw from social groups. This is not conducive to a healthy lifestyle, and by joining a support group, you’ll help alleviate those negative emotions.

 

  • Have the opportunity to help others. There are millions of people out there who could benefit from hearing about your experience with TBI. The support group will give you plenty of knowledge and advice, but you’ll also have the chance to share what you can offer to the group.

If you or someone you know has been impacted by a TBI, look into TryMunity’s online community today. This support system can give you the strength you need to face life with a traumatic brain injury, and the resources to learn about this problem every day.