March is here, and so is brain injury awareness month! Nationally, brain injury awareness month has been led by the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA). This is a public awareness campaign dedicated to de-stigmatizing brain injury, empowering those who have survived their injury, and commending their caregivers.
Quick facts on brain injury:
- Every nine seconds someone in the US substance a brain injury
- There are two types of brain injury classifications:
- Acquired Brain Injury (ABI)- a more general category for any injury to the brain that is not hereditary, congenital, degenerative, or induced by birth trauma
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)– caused by trauma to the brain by external force.
- 5.3 million Americans live with TBI related disabilities. That is 1 in every 60 people
Brain injury can be caused by different things:
For ABI related disabilities, the most common causes are:
- Electrical shock
- Infectious disease
- Lightining strick
- Hypoxia (oxygen deprivation)
- Toxic Exposure
- Vehicle accidents
- Seizure Disorder
- Substance abuse/ overdose
For TBI related disabilities, the most common causes include:
- Physical strike/ force by something
- Motor Vehicles
What do I do if I experience a brain injury?
- Go to a doctor. There are both server and mild brain injuries. Major brain injury can look like bruising, torn tissue, or bleeding. While, some more mild brain injury may be more subtle. Symptoms can include headache, nausea, and vomiting. It is always safest to check with a doctor. (https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/traumatic-brain-injury/symptoms-causes/syc-20378557 )
- The doctor will likely ask questions regarding your specific brain injury in order to assess the severity of damage. Such questions will be: How did the injury occur? Did the person lose consciousness? What part of the head was struck?
- From there, imaging tests may take place. Two most common imaging types to get a stagnant image of the brain are CAT scans and MRI. This will help the doctor with diagnosis
This year’s theme for brain injury awareness month is More Than My Brain Injury.
This theme emphasizes that brain injury is a chronic condition. We want to reduce stigmas. By showcasing and understanding the diversity of brain injury, we can help increase the awareness of these conditions and honor the families and caregivers supporting people dealing with brain injury.
How can I help?
Join the awareness efforts!
- Speak up by posting on social media. https://www.biausa.org/public-affairs/media?category=Public%20Awareness
- Speak out on other platforms. Radios, school, companies! https://www.biausa.org/public-affairs/media/media-engagement-awareness-month
- Start a fundraiser
If you have any questions about brain injury, or need help caring for a loved one, please call the clinic at (901) 306-5433 to schedule an appointment. As always, stay safe and healthy!
-Wellness and Stress Clinic Team