Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) affects millions of Americans. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Injury Prevention, the primary causes of TBI include falls, motor vehicle accidents, assaults and being struck by or against something.
The Injured Brain
When a brain in injured, the neurons, nerve tracks or sections of the brain that route messages can be affected. This means the brain can be unable or have difficulty sending the messages to tell the brain what to do. This injury can change the way a person acts, feels, thinks and moves. Brain injuries can also cause internal problems in the body, including regulating blood pressure, body temperature, bowels and bladder. Changes can be temporary or permanent.
Further information and resources on Traumatic Brain Injury can be found at the The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
Traumatic Brain Injuries can cause:
- Shorter attention span
- Problems with memory
- Difficulty solving problems
- Poor judgment
- Loss, full or partial, of reading and writing skills
- Loss, full or partial, of language and communication skills
- Trouble understanding abstract concepts
- Trouble learning new things
Physical changes that can occur after a brain injury include:
- Problems with muscle coordination
- Paralysis, full or partial
- Difficulty with sleep
- Difficulty with speech
- Sexual function difficulty
- Changes in sight, hearing or touch
Personality and behavioral changes can also occur and include:
- Social skills difficulty
- Lack of empathy with others
- Self-centered behavior
- Inability to control emotions
- Aggressive or inappropriate behavior
- Mood swings
Useful Resources & Services for Families Affected by TBI
National Disability Rights Network Protection and Advocacy for Individuals with Disabilities
This national organization of disability rights agencies provides a variety of services to people with disabilities, including TBI. Services include help with problems involving discrimination and employment, education, health care and transportation, personal decision-making, and Social Security disability benefits. These agencies also provide individual and family advocacy.
Traumatic Brain Injury Model Systems
Call (973) 414-4723 to find the center nearest you
Funded through the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research, the TBI Model Systems consist of 16 TBI treatment centers throughout the U.S. The TBI Model Systems have extensive experience treating people with TBI and are linked to well-established medical centers which provide high quality trauma care from the onset of head injury through the rehabilitation process.
Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) Chartered State Affiliates
BIAA is a national program with a network of more than 40 chartered state affiliates, as well as hundreds of local chapters providing information, education and support to individuals, families and professionals affected by brain injury.
Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) & Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
You may be entitled to SSDI and/or SSI. SSDI and SSI eligibility is dependent on a number of factors including the severity of the disability and what assets and income are available. Contact the Social Security Administration to find out more about these programs and whether you will qualify for these benefits.
Centers for Independent Living (CIL)
The CILs exist nationwide to help people with disabilities live independently in the community and may have resources to help your loved one reach a goal of living alone. CIL services include advocacy, peer counseling, case management, personal assistance and counseling, information and referral, and independent living skills development
The Brain Injury Association of America
This association offers resources about living with brain injury, and advocacy.