Definitions and Terms Used for Brain Injury
The term acquired brain injury (ABI) refers to any damage to the brain occurring after birth. There are a range of different types of ABI.
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a type of ABI and occurs when the brain is damaged due to the application of force, as is the case with road traumas, falls, assaults, and sporting injuries.
- Other causes of ABI include stroke, hypoxic injuries where the brain is deprived of oxygen (such as from near drowning incidents and cardiac arrest), brain tumours, encephalitis, meningitis, drug and alcohol abuse.
- Degenerative neurological conditions, such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease, are also now considered a form of ABI.
Frequency of Occurrence of Brain Injury
Brain Injury is a common condition, with approximately one in every forty Australians living with an ABI.
Impact of Brain Injury
Because of the complexity of the brain, no two brain injuries are the same. In many cases, the injury is invisible to an observer, and for these people their “normal” appearance hides the many significant challenges they are experiencing. A brain injury can create a whole host of new changes and challenges for a person, and has the potential to affect every aspect of their life. A brain injury also typically affects a person’s family and support network in significant ways, as they work to support the person who has sustained the injury and adjust to the disruptions in their life.
Important in Assistance Provided
Support networks play a vital role in helping people to adapt to life post-injury.
Many people with ABI find connecting with others with lived experience of this condition to be valuable and affirming.
Family, friends, therapists and other professionals can all play a crucial role in supporting the person with the ABI to adjust to their injury and find a sense of purpose, and establish a meaningful and fulfilling life. For some this means returning to previous employment and life roles, for others it means charting an entirely new path.
To learn more, visit the Synapse’s website fact sheets section for a range of information that can help explain the impacts of Brain Injury.
Watch Video: Living with a Brain Injury
– How Brain Injury SA Offers Services and Support
Video Transcript coming soon.