Strategies for Recovery and Rehabilitation After a Traumatic Brain Injury

Traumatic Brain Injury: “I know from personal experience that brain injury is life-changing,” said Game of Thrones actor, Emilia Clarke, and indeed, many of the consequences of such an event are lifelong.

In the US, some of the most common causes of a traumatic brain injury (TBI) are falls, vehicle crashes, violence, sports injuries, and combat injuries. Those who experience a TBI can have seizures, headaches, vertigo, and other consequences that can make recovery a challenge. It is vital to embrace various strategies that enable one to overcome obstacles and remain positive about the immense improvements that can be made over time.

Obtaining Legal Help

The lifetime costs of treating a TBI run from around $85,000 to $3 million. While health and accident insurance, automobile insurance, and/or worker’s compensation may lighten your load in terms of medical expenses, it is important to obtain any legal compensation you may be entitled to. Catastrophic injury lawyers can provide you with information regarding the strength of your case so you can make a confident decision about whether or not to go via the legal route. Bear in mind that the employment rate after a TBI stands at about 57% after two years though it can decrease to 43% in the long-term. Ensuring your economic security should therefore be an important priority from the start.

Relearning Skills 

Many people who have had a TBI will require more than one type of rehabilitation, since they may need to relearn skills like walking or talking. If you have experienced a TBI, for instance, you may have to see an occupational therapist, physical therapist, speech and language therapist, physiatrist (a specialist doctor who focuses on rehabilitation), and more. Recovery often takes time and effort, so it is important to embrace lifestyle changes that can help you adapt to your new rhythm of life. Getting plenty of sleep, maintaining a growth mindset (knowing that your TBI does not define you, nor will you always feel the same now), and ensuring you obtain satisfaction and happiness from many sources can help you stay positive and focused.

Reaching Out for Support

After having a TBI, you may have issues with social skills. For instance, you may feel out of place, find it hard to maintain conversations, or forget what someone has said. You may also find it hard to express your thoughts and emotions.

Despite these changes, maintaining a social circle is vital. Wiseguy and The Wanderers actor, Ken Wahl, who is an active supporter of military vets, strikes a chord when he says, “Most people don’t realize the tremendous value that therapy, companionship, and comfort animals have when it comes to helping people with PTSD and TBI.” Being with people you love or enjoy can help you hone key social skills such as getting on with others, maintaining friendships, and succeeding at work or in voluntary positions. Having a pet or spending time with a comfort animal, meanwhile, can help lower stress, while undergoing animal-assisted therapy can provide a powerful source of motivation during occupational therapy and other types of therapy. 

A TBI can be life-changing and recovery may take various weeks or months or involve long-term approaches. At the outset, it is important to obtain legal help if you feel you might be entitled to compensation. Being assiduous with therapy sessions and surrounding yourself by sources of support can also help ease the process of adaptation.

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