Traumatic brain injuries happen, and they happen often. In fact, more than a million people suffer from a traumatic brain injury, or TBI, every year. With so many TBI’s occurring each year, September has been designated as National Traumatic Brain Injury Awareness Month to identify how to prevent, recognize, treat and raise awareness around this type of injury.
As the initiative has grown through the years, more and more groups are becoming involved in helping to bring awareness including the CDC to the charitable Johnny O Foundation to the ARCA Racing Series and the NFL. National Traumatic Brain Injury Awareness Month even has its own awareness ribbon – green for traumatic brain injury (while blue represents all brain injuries). While very common in athletes, traumatic brain injuries can happen to anyone.
Types and Causes
The most common form of TBI, the concussion, is considered a mild TBO and occurs between 1.6 and 3.8 million times a year. Sports and leisure activities and motor vehicle crashes are the most common causes of concussions. Moderate TBIs typically result from violent shaking of the head or a non-penetrating blow. Often accompanied by a loss of consciousness, impairment from a moderate TBI can last from days to months to becoming permanent. Severe TBIs is the most serious and can be life threatening. These types of TBIs are usually the result of a crushing blow or penetrating wound and need immediate care.
While no two traumatic brain injuries are alike, there are common symptoms. Headaches, slurred speech, difficulty thinking clearly, nausea, numbness, confusion, irritability or restlessness to seizures and loss of consciousness are all indicators that someone may have suffered a TBI. Knowing when to seek medical care is essential to the treatment of a TBI. The Centers for Disease Control advises on when to seek medical care for a suspected TBI:
- Headache that gets worse and does not go away.
- Weakness, numbness or decreased coordination.
- Repeated vomiting or nausea.
- Slurred speech
- Drowsy or cannot be awakened.
- Have one pupil (the black part in the middle of the eye) larger than the other.
- Have convulsions or seizures.
- Cannot recognize people or places.
- Are getting more and more confused, restless, or agitated.
- Have unusual behavior.
- Lose consciousness (a brief loss of consciousness should be taken seriously, and the person should be carefully monitored).
In children: Any of the adult symptoms as well as if the child will not nurse or eat or cannot be consoled.
Just as symptoms of TBIs vary from person to person, so too do treatments. Some treatments that have proven effective for traumatic brain injuries include physical therapy, speech therapy, cognitive therapy, occupational therapy and even vocational counseling have all proved effective treatments for TBIs. Chiropractic neurology approaches the treatment of TBIs with a functional and personalized approach and a specialized care plan designed to return the patient to the optimum state of well-being without drugs or invasive procedures.
If you or someone you love has suffered a TBI and would like to learn how Chiropractic Neurology can help you, contact the team at Georgia Chiropractic Neurology Center today. We look forward to hearing from you.