From the first day a loved one is injured onward, family members and loved ones live through many changes in their daily life. Families often spend days/weeks/months in the hospital with their ill loved one. Many also experience the inability of patient and/or family to work, potential of having to be away from friends/family/community, needing to ask for assistance, and simply missing interaction with their ill loved one. The goal of this site is to provide examples, resources, and information to help you adjust to what is happening now, and what will be your family’s new normal.
Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) can be mild, moderate, or severe. The severity of a TBI is initially measured at the scene of the accident by the Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS), and assigned a number between 3-15 (Teasdale & Jennett, 1974). Generally, a lower GCS is indicative of a severe injury (Laureys, Majerus & Moonen, 2002). By now, you’ve probably heard about and seen images of your loved one’s injury, and heard from surgeons, neurologists, neuropsychologists, general medicine physicians, intensive care physicians, and other neuro-specific specialities about the short-term, and possible long-term effects of their injury.
On this site, we have provided two examples in the form of stories from TBI patients Becca and Joey to help guide you through this process. Please keep in mind that every brain injury is different; you may not have all of the same experiences that Becca and Joey’s family had, nor your loved one the same injury or medical experience. The stories should be thought of as guides; take from them what is best for you.
The pages that are dedicated to telling both Becca and Joey’s stories will also incorporate blogs, infographics, and short podcasts by Melissa Abate, LCSW who was kind enough to share her experience working with the families of people who have experienced a brain injury.
If you have questions, concerns, comments, critiques, and/or ideas for this site I would like to hear from you. Please visit the contact page and send me your thoughts.
Laureys, S., Majerus, S., & Moonen, G. (2002). Assessing consciousness in critically ill patients. In J. Vincent (2002 Ed.), Intensive care medicine. (715-727). Springer Publishing Company.
Teasdale, G., & Jennett, B. (1974). Assessment of coma and impaired consciousness: A practical scale. The Lancet, 2, 81-84. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/4136544