Brain Savvy After A Mild Brain Injury

Brain injury OT Services Brisbane

Here’s How Occupational Therapy Brain Injury Services Can Help You Live Better.

Trouble with your memory, fatigued and always tired, does your Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) symptoms continue to disrupt your daily life? TBI occupational therapy may help you address these challenges which prevent you living the life you want to live.  With right brain injury therapy that

  1. Tackles your symptoms,
  2. Provides targeted brain injury therapy activities and
  3. Recommends personalised life changes,

may just be what you’re needing to start to tack control and get your life back on track. 

In this article we share with you:

  • What are common causes of brain injury, not just traumatic brain injury,
  • We explain the difference between traumatic and acquired brain injury TBI and ABI
  • The persistent symptoms mild traumatic brain injury symptoms that get in the way of work and home life
  • How Occupational Therapy for brain injury survivors can help you live life on your own terms after trauma.

What Are The Common Causes of Brain Injury

There’s no doubt many factors that can cause a brain injury. Here’s some of the common causes of brain injury

  1. Accidents/ Trauma/ Concussion / Falls / Workplace Injuries
  2. Stroke
  3. Tumour
  4. Seizure
  5. Metabolic disorders
  6. Infection
  7. Poisoning/ Toxins / Drug overdose
  8. Lack of oxygen: relating to the brain is referred to as a hypoxic brain injury
  9. Degenerative Neurological Conditions

The Difference Between An ABI Vs TBI

Acquired brain injuries (ABI) refers to any damage to the brain that occurs after birth. The injury impact on the brain causes a change in brain neuronal and glial activity, which means a change in the working and helper cells in the brain.

There are two types of ABIs, traumatic and non traumatic. So in short ABI refers to any event after you’re born that affects your brain’s performance. 

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is an ABI which is caused by a traumatic event, from an external force applied to the head from an assault, a fall, a motor vehicle accident for example.

TBI is common in Australia. In 2003, 432,700 people (2.2% of the population) had an TBI. https://www.braininjuryaustralia.org.au. Today it’s expected that

Over 700,000 Australians have a brain injury, with daily “activity limitations”

https://www.braininjuryaustralia.org.au/

so, it’s impact can be life long for some people and we’d like to help you overcome the mild TBI recovery challenges.

Severity Of Brain Injury 

The severity of brain damage after an injury is one of the major factors that predicts the injury impact on a person’s life and is typically categorised from mild, moderate or severe. 

Mild TBI And Persistent Symptoms

Whilst a full recovery is expected within 3 months after Mild Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI or concussion), not all people experience such rapid recovery according to researchers (ONF). This can affect a person’s abilities at work, university,  social life and day to day living. There are a number of factors which may impact a person’s brain recovery after injury such as;

  • Mechanism of injury (how it was sustained)
  • Experience of post traumatic amnesia- how long a person was unable to recall accurately day to day details after an event
  • History of previous brain trauma
  • Reduce physical performance prior to the injury- like exercises
  • History of psychiatric or neurological symptoms
  • If the skull was fractured as a result of the injury
  • Reduced balance or dizziness in the acute stage
  • What social supports are available after the brain injury
  • Life stage- how old a person is can affect their functional recovery 
  • Life stressors
  • Education status
  • Drug and alcohol use- before and after an injury. Alcohol is a neurotoxin and is observed to negatively impact a person’s recovery

It’s mapping out and making sense of this where occupational therapy for brain injury can help.  You see, persistent symptoms will be varied and individualized.

So, how one person is impacted will be very different to the next person. This can no doubt be a challenging and confusing for may people after a brain injury about what they can do about  there symptoms and how it impacts their life. 

Brain injury therapy will help tackle these symptoms which may continue to persist. We’ll see the impact commonly:

  • Cognitive Changes: The memory and thinking changes which can show up as reduced ability to plan, recall and problem solve for example
  • Emotional and Behavioural Changes: loss of equanimity ( ease of manage life’s highs and lows), more volatility perhaps and also an experience of anxiety or depression or strong intrusive thoughts can present as well
  • Changes in your mental and physical endurance and energy as described as fatigued and foggy brain and is often one of the most intrusive experiences after an brain injury
  • Movement and Balance changes
  • Sensation and Perception Changes
  • and lastly, pain, such as headaches

If these symptoms are persistent, you may benefit from following up with your GP or consider contacting us to see how occupational therapy for brain injury may be of help to you. We’re committed to help people overcome especially the thinking and memory as well as the fatigue factors which is a part of the Memory Health Clinic

How Brain Injury Occupational Therapy Programs Can Help You Live Better

The largest professional group of OTs in the world, the American Occupational Therapy Association highlight how an OT can help you in your Brain Injury recovery process;

“Occupational therapy practitioners are key rehabilitation professionals in assisting individuals with brain injury to reintegrate back into the community……..

Occupational therapy practitioners are experts in assessing functional activity demands against the performance abilities of clients and identifying and addressing deficits; therefore, they are key members of the community reintegration team. Through their expertise in task analysis, environmental modifications, and functional activities, they can help individuals with brain injuries re-learn skills or compensate for impairments. Community-based occupational therapy can help individuals with brain injury improve the quality of their lives and regain their maximal level of independence.

What You Can Expect From TBI Occupational Therapy Services In Brisbane

Because each person’s brain injury is different, an brain injury therapy and rehabilitation program will be personalised to your situation. Common brain injury OT services include; 

  • Teach the use of memory strategies such as daily planners, technological devices, checklists, and cueing systems
  • Design effective schedules and routines
  • Support, teach and coach individuals and family members in techniques to cope with changes in behavior and low frustration tolerance
  • Design and implement environmental adaptations to assist with physical, perceptual, and cognitive functioning, such as labeling cupboards and drawers, or using lighting to improve vision and/or attention to task
  • Assist in re-learning social skills through techniques such as pre-processing and rehearsal, where the individual and therapist anticipate challenging social situations and practice appropriate responses
  • Brain Injury Therapy Activities: Provide cognitive retraining exercises to address specific cognitive skills, such as attention, memory, and executive functioning (e.g., using computer-based programs)
  • Provide training and adaptation (if needed) for activities of daily living, such as dressing, bathing, and grooming
  • Provide training and assist in the development of compensatory techniques for instrumental activities of daily living, such as preparing meals, shopping, managing routine financial tasks, and caring for children
  • Facilitate the identification and development of healthy, fulfilling hobbies or other leisure activities
  • Consult with employers and/or educational systems to adapt the work or school environment to facilitate the individual’s performance abilities

Source: AAOT

Can TBI Occupational Therapy Brisbane Services Help You?

The occupational therapy practice was formed to work with the body, encourage the spirit, and respect the person. With a unique and specialised focus on adults with neurological and complex therapy needs.

We can see you either in your home or at work, in the clinic or online.

Our approach is different. We form a bond with you which respects your medical, personal, social, cultural, physical, and functional experiences and histories.

We help people, maybe like you, find their strength and hope in order to achieve your goals. You can read more about our practice and it’s founder, David Norris, here. 

Brain Injury OT Program Support

At OT Brisbane we offer programs to people living with brain injury under various funding schemes.  From Self Funded or Private Insurance to Aged Care and the NDIS OT services are available.

Memory Health Clinic For People Living With Persistent Mild Brain Injury Symptoms

The memory health clinic offers services and programs to people and their families who are recovering from a mild TBI. 

With your traumatic brain injury therapy you can expect a therapist to;

  1. Firstly, assess your current cognitive (memory and thinking) fitness and how this impacts your daily life.
  2. Design a program to support you to help you acheive your recovery and life goals
  3. Work with you to make this happen in your life

The Memory Assessment and Therapy Service and programs are available for people who are Self Funded or Privately Insured or have access to Aged Care and NDIS programs.

To find out more call 1300 783 200 or fill in the form with as much relevant information below and a team member will contact you shortly. 

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