The Daily Breeze highlighted a new local traumatic brain injury recovery group that is working to help community victims get their lives back together as much as possible. As we often report, the recovery process for these victims is heavily dependent on the therapy that they receive in the months and years following the injury. It is amazing the difference in improvements seen across various individuals depending on their access to the latest in therapy and rehabilitation.
The new organization discussed in the latest article is the Brain Rehabilitation and injury Network (B.R.A.I.N.). The program, like many others that are sprouting up nationwide, are all about providing a place for local victims of these injuries to interact and receive the wide-ranging help they need. Participation in these community groups is often the difference between being able to relearn basic skills like, walking and talking, and being left with permanent impairments.
One B.R.A.I.N. participant, for example, suffered a sudden cardiac death, sending her into a coma for three weeks. During the ordeal there was extensive deprivation to the brain that left her with ataxia and apraxia disorder. She had little control over her muscles, could not execute learned movements, and was legally blind. However, the 46-yar old reports that she has seen significant improvement in the three years since accident, in large part due to involvement in the brain injury recovery group. Our Chicago brain injury attorneys have witnessed the same improvement for clients who actively engage in all of the support efforts available to them.
Like other community based service groups, B.R.A.I.N. involves the injury victims, their family, friends, and other interested parties to offer a comprehensive approach to rehabilitation. The group was founded three years ago by a family whose young daughter was misdiagnosed as having schizophrenia when in reality she had suffered a brain injury. As it often the case-necessity was the mother of invention. The family sought out support services to help their daughter but found that there were none nearby. They set out to change that and so B.R.A.I.N. was founded. The group explains their mission as one to create a community where those who have lived though the experience could provide insight and help educate others who had suffered traumatic brain injuries.
The group has grown so popular that offshoot programs have already sprung up. For example, Friends of Brain Injury (F.B.I.) is a group, now eighty strong, that meets weekly to share personal stories, provide information about relevant resources, and brainstorm ways to engage with others. The groups is led by a local licensed speech-language pathologist. One local college professor involved with the effort summarized by noting, “The group is all about helping people find each other and know there are people out there whom they can relate to. We want them to have a sense of community.” Participants report that hearing the story of others helps them keep their own injuries into perspective.
Another offshoot program in known as B.R.A.I.N. Cells which pairs brain injury survivors with community volunteers. The pairings are made with consideration of the participants’ age, gender, and interests. The goal is to create bonds between the partners, building a relationship that can become an important part of the survivors healing process.
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