Ask the Experts: Concussion and Traumatic Brain Injury
We are starting a new series of blog posts called, Ask the Experts! We will be partnering with local experts in the area to provide you with information on a variety of topics! Our first edition of Ask the Experts features Amy Dubey, occupational therapist and owner of Therapy Solutions. Amy is very passionate about the work she does and the clients she serves. We have the pleasure of being neighbors with Therapy Solutions and seeing the amazing work that all of their therapists do on a daily basis!
Also, be sure to check out the Northern Michigan Brain Warriors 5k walk, run, and roll hosted by Therapy Solutions this weekend: https://www.facebook.com/events/333676433903381/
Traumatic Brain Injuries, or TBIs are a very serious injury to our brain which affects our entire body and system. They occur after a bump, blow, or jolt to the head and often accompany a whiplash injury. Everyone is susceptible to this type of injury. Amy dives a little deeper into how we can be more aware of TBIs and how to help loved ones who may be suffering from a TBI:
1) Tell us a little bit about what you do and how you help patients with traumatic brain injuries (T.B.I.). First, allow me to say, at Therapy Solutions, we don't have patients, we have clients. "Patient" indicates a passive relationship whereas "client" denotes active involvement, a crucial component to each person's progress. We at Therapy Solutions strive to bring hope to clients recovering from a traumatic, neurological event. Our team uses functional and innovative techniques to motivate our clients toward achieving greater physical, cognitive, social, and emotional independence within their home, community, and work. We facilitate a positive, safe, and home-like environment helping our clients feel comfortable collaborating with the team. Our clients, their family and caregivers are encourage to be active contributors, helping us individualize each treatment plan. Each clients' journey is unique so we provide one-on-one treatment to assist each client see their "life re-emerging".
2) What are the biggest challenges you see in overcoming a traumatic brain injury (T.B.I.)? Finding the right team of people who have the drive and specialized training to most effectively contribute to the quickest and most beneficial progress possible. You can not take an orthopedic approach to a neurological impairment. The treatment team can be extensive and could possibly include any combination of the following: family/friend, PT/OT/ST therapies, a counselor/psychiatrist/psychologist, a case manager, a general physician/neurologist/pain management and rehabilitation doctor, a chiropractor, a massage therapist, and any other combination of specialists. Brain injury does not have a straightforward treatment plan, it is specialized and individual to each person.
3) How can family members and friends help someone suffering from a T.B.I.? Thank you for asking this question! Once again, the support team for someone suffering from a T.B.I. plays a crucial role in progress/recovery. If you know someone who suffers from a traumatic brain injury, we strongly encourageyou to reach out to local resources that can help you understand the struggles your loved one is going through. A local group called Brain Warriors, meet up on the third Monday ever other month to support one another. Anyone and everyone is welcome to attend because it is important to hear that you are not alone. There are many people in our community who struggle with the effects of TBI, please consider finding more information about the support group (as well as other online resources) by visiting our website, and clicking on the 'Resources' link.
4) How would you know if you had a T.B.I? Anything from a bump to a blow can cause brain damage. Symptoms of a TBI can vary greatly and include (but aren't limited to) headaches, light/sound sensitivities, increased anxiety/depression, vision issues, balance issues, trouble sleeping, sleeping more than normal, odd feelings inside your head/brain, etc. Should symptoms such as these persist after what you or your physician feel is a reasonable amount of time, please consider giving us a call. We would be grateful for the opportunity to help you troubleshoot, free of charge, whether or not you may need/want to seek treatment. We believe in treatment collaboration and are happy to help you find a doctor in the area if you do not have one.
5) What are the steps you take when you suspect you have a T.B.I.? Contact someone who specializes in neurological disorders. Oftentimes this starts with seeing your family doctor and letting him/her know what you are experiencing and indicating that you would like to see a specialist. As stated above, we welcome anyone to contact us directly to discuss any concerning symptoms and/or complete an in-depth evaluation. Our phone number is 231-487-0080, or our email address is Admin@TherapySolutionsOT.com
6) Is there anything else you would like people to know about T.B.I.'s? It is an invisible condition. More often than not you can not see that someone is suffering.
7) How do you think chiropractic may be able to help someone with a T.B.I.? We advise client's to seek chiropractic care when spinal misalignment could be causing dizziness, vertigo, pain or stiffness in the neck and/or back. Chiropractic care can reduce system stimulation and decrease painful or irritating symptoms. For further information on chiropractic care and TBI, we encourage you to call a specialist such as Dr. Emily Brown at Bear River Chiropractic.
We hope this will help you gain a better understanding of TBI! A huge thank you to Amy for sharing this information! :)