When we think of catastrophic injuries, it is common to conjure up images of wheelchairs, crutches, casts and bandages. However, some injuries have effects that are invisible to the naked eye and consequences for victims that deserve our consideration.
Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) have consequences that extend beyond physical symptoms. Accident survivors with TBIs can have behavioral, emotional and cognitive symptoms. TBIs can cause aphasia, a condition where the person has difficulty speaking or understanding language. Americans may associate aphasia with former congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, who suffered from the condition after a tragic shooting. Accident survivors with TBIs can also have problems with memory or organizing tasks.
Living with a TBI is not like having a broken arm, where everyone can see the injury. Take for example, the case of a Miss America contestant who recently spoke to the Huffington Post about living with a TBI. When the young woman was practicing cheerleading moves at a dance studio, she hesitated in the middle of a flip, coming down headfirst onto a hardwood floor. The resulting impact caused a TBI, and she still lives with the effects to this day, suffering from aphasia and minor memory problems.
The Miss America contestant mentioned one of the most frustrating aspects of living with A TBI is that friends, families and coworkers are unable to understand new physical and cognitive limitations. Activities such as school and work can become more difficult, and accident survivors can have a difficult time finding sympathy. TBIs are called “invisible injuries” for good reasons.
Where Can Louisiana Residents Get Help for TBIs?
Fortunately, there are state resources for individuals with TBIs. The Brain Injury Association of Louisiana provides educational services for families, access to support groups and references for medical professionals who can help individuals cope with their injuries.
Continue following our blog for more information on how to get help for TBIs.