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Living with a TBI

When it comes to of brain injuries in Pennsylvania, contact sports and car accidents may be the first topics to come to mind. Yet there are a plethora of other causes and concerns regarding brain injuries, as well as potentially lasting effects. Emotional issues are an aspect of brain injuries that is minimally discussed but makes a monumental impact on a person's overall wellbeing.

Although many may assume emotional effects are an obvious repercussion of brain injuries, obstacles that ensue can be incredibly complex. Model Systems Knowledge Translation Center, an organization that provides informational resources on traumatic brain injuries, notes that emotional disorders post-injury can vary depending on the individual. Some, according to MSKTC, experience emotional "roller coasters," while others experience intense emotions that last only briefly. Such emotional unpredictability is often the result of damage to the area of the brain that controls emotions and behavior. Although some injuries are irreversible, MSKTC points out that emotional outbursts usually improve within a few months of the injury, where individuals can eventually find emotional balance.

Brainline, a national multimedia project offering information about preventing, treating and living with TBI, also brings to attention the many obstacles one can face when recovering from this type of trauma. Brainline gives the following "silent" and lasting effects that can come with a TBI:

  • Memory and concentration issues
  • Fatigue
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Chronic pain 

Another aspect of TBI that many are not aware of is the side effects of various prescription medications. Such medications can cause a person with a brain injury to act more apathetic than usual, and become more irritable than before the injury. Because the type and magnitude of each issue depends on each case, Brainline encourages families of those recovering to seek as much information on TBI as possible. 



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