Daily conversations help fight effects of brain injury

Friday May 16, 2014

Most New Haven, Connecticut, residents know that a head injury can be damaging in a number of ways. Despite seeming to be a bony, well-protected part of the body, the skull and the brain inside are as prone to injury as, for instance, any of the joints. Often, brain damage is hardly, if at all, visible. A brain injury can cause anything from mild disorientation to a permanent disability. Detecting such injuries can also be problematic since they can be caused by mild impact and not just major collisions.

Also, given that brain injuries tend to result in many different physiological and psychological symptoms, they can be difficult to treat. Patients may need rehabilitation or even long-term care to completely overcome the impact of a brain injury.

Research results from the University of Washington, however, indicate that sufficiently trained social workers can stem the decay of brain functions, such as memory, by the simple trick of conversing with patients. Per the research, even a 20-minute verbal interaction can cut down the risk of becoming mentally dysfunctional by a large margin. This technique, if properly employed, can come as a relief to the millions of patients who undergo treatment for brain injuries every year.

The biggest concern with a head injury, however, is that its actual impact on the brain may be undiagnosed. Connecticut residents who have interacted with patients may know that there can be memory loss, apart from dizziness and even blurred eyesight. Again, when patients do receive appropriate medical care, the cost of such care can be extremely high.

Those who suffer such injuries in accidents can legally claim compensation for medical expenses. Other patients may be left wondering how much will be covered by their insurance provider.

Source: University of Washington, “Social workers can help patients recover from mild traumatic brain injuries,” Doree Armstrong, May 06, 2014

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