Brain Injury Awareness Month_MarchEach March, people around the country observe Brain Injury Awareness month.  This observance is dedicated to raising awareness and providing hope to victims of traumatic brain injuries (TBI).

A traumatic brain injury usually occurs from a disruption in the normal function of the brain caused by a violent blow, or jolt to the head or body that causes a change in one’s mental status or consciousness. Brain injuries can range in scope from mild, also known as a concussion, to severe which can involve an extended period of unconsciousness or amnesia and can result in permanent neurological damage.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 1.7 million people suffer a traumatic brain injury, each year.  Of this group, approximately 80,000 people suffer from a long-term disability as a result.  It is estimated that more than 52,000 people die in the United States from a TBI. Brain injuries do not discriminate. They can happen at anytime, anywhere and to anyone.

When to Seek Immediate Medical Attention

Danger Signs in Adults:

  •         Headache that gets worse and does not go away
  •         Weakness, numbness or decreased coordination
  •         Repeated vomiting or nausea
  •         Slurred speech
  •         Extreme drowsiness or unable to wake up
  •         One pupil (the black part in the middle of the eye) is larger than the other
  •         Convulsions or seizures
  •         Unable to recognize people or places
  •         Becomes more and more confused, restless, or agitated
  •         Unusual behavior
  •         Loss of consciousness

Danger Signs in Children:

  •         Have any of the danger signs for adults listed above
  •         Constant crying/inconsolable
  •         Will not nurse or eat

When a medical emergency happens, it’s good to know Memorial Healthcare’s Emergency Department is there for you.  Available 24 hours, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, the newly renovated department offers patients excellence in medical and surgical care for all of life’s unexpected mishaps.