What are the Effects of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)?
Traumatic brain injury occurs when there is a sudden impact to the head. This impact is significant enough to cause brain damage and can be the result of hitting, rapid spinning, and a sudden stop in acceleration. Some typical events that cause this type of injury include: car accidents, falls, and sports injuries. Depending on where the damage has occurred, and the extent of the damage, cognition, speech, language and swallowing can all be effected.
Speech and language therapy can be extremely helpful for those who have TBI. In therapy I use a strength-based approach, which utilizes the current skills a person has, in addition to expanding on new skills. Improving communication can be achieved through retraining previous skills, utilizing useful compensation techniques, or using technologies to help support the unique communication needs of each person.
Swallowing therapy may also be a necessary consideration in TBI. As part of my initial assessment procedure I will ensure that my client is not put at health risk when they are eating and drinking. If swallowing is identified as a concern, I will take the necessary steps with my client and their family, to ensure that health and safety are priorities. Please refer to the Swallowing Resource for additional information
Cognitive therapy is also an area of focus for many TBI clients. Assessing and retraining areas of memory, attention, and problem solving skills, are all critical for individuals to reach their full potential post-event. Many activities of daily living (ADL) can be impacted by changes in cognition.
Education and training to family members is a key component in the success of my therapy programs.
Family Support and Emotional Needs
A change in our ability to function is an extremely emotional situation. Family members and close friends are usually the ones left to help support our loved ones back to the best quality of life possible. I believe that success in improving the physical and functional skills of each of my clients, should also be balanced with meeting their emotional needs. Given the important role that many family members play in supporting their loved ones, it is critical that family members take care of their emotional needs as well.
Grief, loss, anger, and sadness can be just some of the emotional pain that individuals who have been injured in an accident can feel. The family members caring for their loved ones go through similar strong emotions. Please refer to my Counselling Services if you feel this type of support is necessary to improve you and/or your loved ones potential for achieving better health and happiness.