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Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)

Head injury is one of the fastest growing types of disabilities, especially for people from 15 to 28 years old. Over 5000,000 cases are reported hospitalized each year. Damage to the brain may be caused by bruising and bleeding, tearing, and swelling. The injury may be either an open head injury or a closed head injury. Closed head injuries are often considered the more profound. There is a wide range of differences in the effects of a TBI on the individual, but most cases result in some type of impairment.

The functions that may be affected include:

  • Memory
  • Cognitive/Perceptual Communication
  • Speed of thinking
  • Communication
  • Spatial Reasoning
  • Conceptualization
  • Psychosocial Behaviors
  • Motor Abilities
  • Sensory Perception
  • Sleep
  • Physical Abilities

A number of factors affect learning for a person with TBI. Short term memory may have been affected. Learning requires energy and brain injury increases fatigue. Social skills may have been affected as speech, mobility, and fine and gross motor control may be limited. The thinking process is often slowed as the person searches for the right words before speaking. Concentration can be a major problem for students with TBI. To focus on a task takes extreme effort, so study, reading, test-taking and other attention tasks become difficult.