Why not click on the National Headway website? It has lots of useful medical information about the effects of Traumatic Brain injury (TBI) on survivors, relatives and carers.
- About brain injury – An acquired brain injury (ABI) is an injury caused to the brain since birth. There are many possible causes, including a fall, a road accident, tumour and stroke.
Aquired brain injury affects survivors, family members, carers and the people around them. We provide information to help at the different stages of brain injury, from hospital to home.
Types of brain injury
Acquired brain injury can have a number of different causes. Some of the most common types of brain injury include:
- Traumatic brain injury (for instance road traffic collisions, falls or assaults)
- Minor head injury and concussion (loss of consciousness of less than 15 minutes)
- Aneurysm (also known as a cerebral aneurysm)
- Brain haemorrhage (also known as a haemorrhagic stroke)
- Brain tumour
- Carbon monoxide poisoning
- Hypoxic/anoxic brain injury (caused a reduction or loss of oxygen to the brain)
Effects of brain injury
A brain injury can lead to a wide range of effects. While many people recover quickly after a minor head injury (often known as concussion), this is not always the case and people may experience longer-term effects.
The more severe the brain injury, the longer-term and more pronounced the effects are likely to be. Some people may spend time in a coma, or experience a more prolonged reduced awareness state. During the early stages of recovery, brain injury survivors often go through a stage called Post-traumatic amnesia, where they have no continuous memory of day-to-day events and their behaviour may be very uncharacteristic and confused.
A brain injury can cause behavioural and emotional changes, hormonal imbalances, difficulties with cognition and memory, a range of communication problems, physical effects and, very commonly, fatigue.
Hospital treatment and early recovery after brain injury
The time immediately after the injury is bound to be full of worry and uncertainty for everyone concerned.
We provide information on the different stages of recovery, from the time in the hospital and early rehabilitation through to discharge. Families may be able to access a grant to help with the unexpected costs of brain injury by applying to our Emergency Fund.
You can also set up a page on our I’m calling about Chris website to post updates on your loved one’s situation and allow family and friends to keep up-to-date. They can also access our information that explains how to support a family that is dealing with brain injury.
Rehabilitation and continuing care after brain injury
Rehabilitation aims to help the brain learn alternative ways of working in order to minimise the long-term impact of the brain injury. Rehabilitation also helps the survivor and the family to cope successfully with any remaining disabilities.
After the initial phase of rehabilitation is complete, you may require continuing care, and want to find out about ways you can self-direct your support.
Practical issues after brain injury
A brain injury can lead to a wide range of difficulties in day-to-day life. For many people, a priority may be to seek financial support. This could involve getting legal advice to pursue compensation, applying for welfare benefits or applying for a grant from the Headway Emergency Fund.
In the longer-term, many brain injury survivors may want to return to driving, or get back to work or education.
They may also qualify for a Brain injury identity card, which is designed to provide brain injury survivors with added confidence in everyday social scenarios, and ensure they get the right support if they come into contact with the police.
Please visit our Information library on more information
There is also useful information to help people with brain injury to cope with parenting and supporting children.
Headway’s range of e-booklets and factsheets cover many of the symptoms and practical issues associated with a brain injury.
You can browse the library through the link below.
Many of our e-booklets are available to buy through our online shop, and you can click the button next to them to order now. People with a brain injury and their family members can order free printed copies of our booklets and factsheets through the Headway helpline.