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Traumatic Brain Injury - Rehabilitation

When someone suffers a traumatic brain injury, rehabilitation is necessary to help the body heal and assist the brain in doing functions that used be automatic. Rehabilitation will help the TBI victim learn different ways to do things if previous abilities have been lost. Rehabilitation will help the victim live and function independently.

In addition to medical providers, family members/caregivers are a very important part of the rehabilitation team. Family caregivers can help ease symptoms and feelings of distress, anxiety, anger and depression. Family members/caregivers can help the victim with functions they are having trouble with and help them learn new ways to accomplish what they have lost.

Medical professionals that can help with rehabilitation are as follows:

• Neurologist to help diagnose and make the proper referrals for the traumatic brain injury.

• Neuropsychologist to help diagnose the depth of the problems and to focus on cognitive difficulties including thinking skills and behavioral problems.

• Speech and language therapist can help with cognitive difficulties once properly diagnosed by the neurologist and neuropsychologist. These therapists can help the victim accomplish functions by showing new ways of doing things and shortcuts.

• Physiatrists are physical rehabilitation physicians that can help with physical pain and problems.

• Occupational and physical therapists once properly diagnosed by a physiatrist can help with physical pain and rehabilitation.

• Vocational rehabilitation can help coach the victim to getting back into employment.

• State brain injury associations and support groups can help the victim and family members/caregivers to realize they are not alone and to help share ideas.

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