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By Trine S. McCall, LPTA, CBIS
Brain injuries, which include concussions and strokes, are more common than you think. March is National Brain Injury Awareness month. It’s an important time to understand the significance of brain injury and how Sheltering Arms helps patients to recover.
What are the numbers?
Brain injury the second most prevalent injury and disability in the United States and The Centers for Disease Control has labeled traumatic brain injury as the “silent epidemic”.
What are the types of brain injuries?
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
A TBI is caused by an external physical force resulting from a fall, motor vehicle accident, sports injury, gunshot wound, abuse, etc. A mild traumatic brain injury can also be referred to as a concussion. Approximately 80% of brain injures fall in the mild category.
Acquired Brain Injury (ABI)
An ABI is an injury to the brain that occurred after birth and is not hereditary, congenital or degenerative such as strokes, seizures, tumors, brain infections, lack of oxygen to the brain, etc.
What is the impact to the brain?
Both TBIs and ABIs cause impairments in cognitive abilities and physical functioning. The right side of the brain controls the left side of the body, and the left side of the brain controls the right side of the body.
Injuries to the left side of the brain can cause the following deficits: difficulty understanding language (receptive language), difficulties speaking or verbal output (expressive language), impaired logic, impaired sequencing, depression and anxiety, and decreased control of right-sided body movements.
Injuries to the right side of the brain can cause the following deficits: visual-spatial impairments, visual memory deficits, decreased insight or awareness of deficits, altered creativity and music perception, loss of “the big picture” type of thinking, decreased control of left-sided body movements.
At Sheltering Arms, we have the best equipment available in the field of physical rehabilitation. Our therapists have extensive training and expertise in helping people regain function and independence following stroke, concussion, or other brain injuries. Call 804-764-1000 to learn more. The Brain Injury Association of Virginia is a great resource for brain injury survivors and their caregivers. You may reach them at (804) 355-5748. In addition, the American Stroke Association, (888) 478-7653, provides numerous solutions for life after stroke.