March is National Brain Injury Awareness Month. Chances are, there is someone in your life who is living with the trauma of a brain injury of some kind. There are many different ways our brains can become injured.
Even today, there is still an awful lot of negativity and stigma surrounding brain injuries and the people who live with them. Educating ourselves is the first step to ending that.
Types of Brain Injuries
A brain injury doesn’t need to be severe to have a profound effect on the person’s ability to function and recover. It also doesn’t always come from extreme trauma, like an accident.
Traumatic Brain Injury
A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is identified as a blow or jolt to the head or a penetrating head injury that affects the function of the brain. Not all blows or jolts to the head result in a TBI, but there may still be problems.
The severity of these types of injuries can vary and range from mild to severe. There can also be a variety of symptoms or even none at all.
The mild injury may cause the person to be confused, groggy, or even lose consciousness. There may be a spinning sensation, a ringing in the ears, double vision, and headache.
A more severe injury can cause an extended period of unconsciousness, vomiting, seizures, loss of vision, loss of balance, mood change, memory loss, disorientation, and others.
These symptoms may not always surface right away. They may show up even years later.
Non Traumatic Brain Injury
A non-traumatic brain injury can be the result of an illness, oxygen deprivation, metabolic disorders, aneurysms, cardiac arrest, near-drowning experience, inhaling toxins, tumors, and lead poisoning
Anything that has an effect on the brain without there being any physical violence, however, some of the effects can be similar. There can be the same long-lasting effects and damages.
The most common instances of non-traumatic brain injury include:
- A virus is the most common cause of non-traumatic brain injury
- Encephalitis, which is caused by an infection of the brain
- Brain tumors
- Drug abuse
Brain Injury Effects
While some of the effects of a brain injury are immediate, others may take some time to appear. Worse yet are the damages that are not noticeable or diagnosed. They can be a ticking time bomb.
People may have injuries that can resurface years later through another bang on the head, or in other ways, like dementia. It can also have a long-term effect on the person’s personality and emotional stability.
These problems can also show up as memory loss or problems, dizziness, headaches, sensitivity to light or noise, fatigue, and even seizures. There may also be problems with sleep, concentration, moodiness, and depression.
This can increase the risk for long-term neurodegenerative diseases, as well. Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease may stem from people who have had severe injuries as well as those who have sustained multiple TBIs.
It’s important to remember that each of these injuries, whether severe or mild, can have varying effects in every case. Things like the severity of the injury, immediate treatment, health and age of the patient, and if there have been past injuries.
Brain Injury Awareness Month
The best way to celebrate Brain Injury Awareness Month is to become more aware of the effects, the people in your life who may have them, and those who may be at risk.
Considering volunteering at a facility that treats and cares for those who have suffered brain injuries. There is likely plenty you can do and they are very often grateful for the extra hands.
Share your own stories with people who may be suffering in silence. If you have been through it yourself or with a loved one, share these stories so people understand they are not alone.
Donate or fundraise for an organization that is in your community or that you depend on for help, guidance, and services. There is always room for more funding, regardless of how much it is.
Prevention is not always possible, but those who are vulnerable, like seniors, make sure their surroundings are safe and secure. Making yourself aware and getting educated helps everyone.
If you know someone suffering from a brain injury, reach out for help.
We Are Here To Help
At Sycamore Creek Ranch Memory Care we are here to help. We want families to make the best decision for their situation.
Furthermore, the staff at Sycamore Creek Ranch is proactive. That means we are not waiting for a problem to arise. Instead, we are actively engaged with each and every resident. And with only 16 residents we can do that! Come for a tour at Sycamore Creek Ranch! See how we can help!