Oftentimes, a traumatic brain injury will leave one with serious physical impairments that require continuous monitoring and treatment. In such cases, the need for financial assistance to help cover the expenses associated with such care is apparent (as such care may be necessary for the remainder of the victim’s life). Thus, if your family member or friend is able to emerge from their TBI without any physical issues, you may feel as though they (and you, as their loved one) dodged a bullet. Yet that may not always be the case.
Along with physical limitations, a TBI can also cause cognitive deficits. Cognitive processes deal with communication, concentration, understanding and memory retention. While the physical effects of a brain injury may impair your family member or friend from completing basic daily tasks, cognitive issues may make it difficult for them to handle tasks that require complex thought.
According to the Model Systems Knowledge Translation Center, cognitive problems witnessed in TBI victims include:
- Difficulty paying attention and remaining focused
- Issues communicating in logical ways
- Troubles with processing and retaining information
- Difficulty staying organized
- Troubles in containing impulsiveness
- Issues with problem-solving
The common thread between all of these issues is that they are vital skills to have in order to perform the functions of a job or to maintain healthy relationships. Continued struggles with them could lead to psychological or emotional problems such as depression.
While the trauma to the brain that caused your loved one’s cognitive deficits cannot be reversed, there are techniques and treatments that can be effective in helping to cope with them. Thus, even though no physical after-effects may plague your friend or family member, the need for assistance may still be there.