Brain Injury Canada (A, n.d.) stated that abrupt movement that moves the brain within the skull causes a concussion, “which is a mild type of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)”.  A type of brain damage left unacknowledged and untreated could worsen.
Symptoms associated with a concussion include “amnesia, confusion, headache, loss of consciousness, balance problems or dizziness, double or fuzzy vision, sensitivity to light or noise, nausea, feeling sluggish, foggy, or groggy, feeling unusually irritable, concentration or memory problems, [and] slowed reaction time” (Brain Injury Canada (A), n.d.).  

Recovery following a concussion tends to involve “bed rest, and very limited reading, talking, and brain stimulation” (Brain Injury Canada (B), n.d.).  Upon diagnosis, a doctor may conduct a neurological exam, neuropsychological test, and discussions about brain injury.

 

R&R Care incorporates both types of treatments for recovery from traumatic brain injury through the following:

 

  • Examples of restorative rehabilitation*

    • engaging in cognitively stimulating discussions about things like song lyrics and poems
    • playing games such as puzzles, trivia/riddle questions, and “What Am I?” guessing games
    • doing physical exercises that include arm, hand, leg, and feet movements through exercises guidelines provided by occupational therapist
    • baking cookies/cakes
    • making arts and crafts
    • getting individuals to read out numbers, letters, and/or words
    • word search (e.g. thinking of words that remind them of “summer”, or the rhymes with “red”)
    • memory game with cards (i.e. a matching game, where individuals flip cards over to try to match them based on their pictures)
    • using books that describe the difference between what is/isn’t appropriate in a social setting (for those who lack in understanding social cues within their environment)—asking which is/isn’t appropriate and explaining why that is
    • going for a walk
    • reminiscing about what they can remember from their past (i.e. storytelling)
    • sing-alongs or playing along or listening to music
    • playing a type of kicking or catching game with a ball
  • Examples of compensatory rehabilitation*

    • using adaptive spoon for cerebral palsy
    • using resistance bands, ball, and weights
    • using balls with rough or spikey texture (to help with sensory exploration—helps with fine motor skills)
    • using balls that are soft when playing catch
    • using larger paint brushes for arts and crafts
    • using larger playing cards compared to the usual size of  playing cards
    • using bigger actions to exemplify certain movements that they can do
    • using chairs during exercise activity
    • asking questions that are not too open-ended (e.g. asking “Would you like to pet the rabbit or go for a walk?” instead of “What would you like to do now?”)
    • talking in a higher tone of voice, a higher volume, and more slowly to compensate for discrepancies in communication
    • soaking hard foods in water or soup before eating (for those with limited feeding capacities)
    • singing songs that are easy to follow and/or remember from their past
    • lending a hand/shoulder to someone while walking
    • walking at the individual’s pace (e.g. slower, if needed)
    • having an individual sign their name beside a task completed to remind them of the importance of doing certain tasks and to keep them accountable for their actions
    • using maracas, tambourine, or plastic eggs filled with rice to keep them engaged in playing music
    • dividing baking tasks accordingly (e.g. having one person stir/mix ingredients, while the other adds those ingredients)
    • using larger fonts for individuals to read off of a sheet of paper

*Note – some or all have been used for individuals with dementia, cerebral palsy, and other mental limitations

Incorporating many of these examples in our day programs, home care, and companionship services has helped make a difference in how individuals feel about their day.  According to some caregivers’ testimonials (click here to see what they have to say about R&R Care), individuals walk out with an overall positive and happy disposition, that feeling that they have just spent their time doing meaningful tasks throughout the day.

 

References:

Brain Injury Canada (A).  (n.d.).  About acquired brain injury (ABI).  Retrieved from https://rehabandretreat.com//braininjurycanada.ca/acquired-brain-injury/

Brain Injury Canada (B).  (n.d.).  ABI prevention and treatment.  Retrieved from https://rehabandretreat.com//braininjurycanada.ca/acquired-brain-injury/prevention-and-treatment/

Samuel, R.  (2008).  Cognitive rehabilitation for reversible and progressive brain injury.  Indian Journal of Psychiatry, 50(4), 282-284.  https://rehabandretreat.com//dx.doi.org/10.4103/0019-5545.44752

Spikey tactile balls.  (n.d.).  Fun and function.  Retrieved from https://rehabandretreat.com//funandfunction.com/spiky-tactile-balls.html

 

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