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Nothing mild about TBI

March 6, 2023 Dawn Lynes
Nothing mild about TBI

I hate this term mild TBI. It is based on a scale of how long you lost consciousness. I never lost consciousness. I brushed it off when I hit my head at work as I came up from grabbing a box under a concrete wall divider. It stung and I tried to brush it off but after a couple hours my head hurt more along with the right side of my neck. My first visit at the multidisciplinary trauma center a week later I had been officially diagnosed with a mTBI and I incurred some brain damage. I had to learn to relearn how to read regular books because my eyes could not stay focused on the words. I am still struggling in that area and I have problems with memory and comprehension. I lost my personality for months and felt like a zombie in a constant fog. I have since been going to regular appointments with counseling, PT, OT, and multidisciplinary trauma center for follow up appointments. I went through vision therapy from July 2021-December 2022 and will be having 6 month check ups till I get cleared to go once a year.
This April 24 will mark 2 years since my head injury and I still get chronic headaches, light sensitivity, sound sensitivity tinnitus, balance issues, and sensory overload in busy environments. I struggle with word finding and slurring my words or stuttering when I am tired or stressed. I get confused and say the wrong things when I mean to say something else especially when anxious, tired or under pressure I am not as active as I used to be before due to less energy and have not driven or been able to successfully work. This is just some of the issues I deal with since my brain injury.
I am not alone in this. A brain injury occurs every 9 seconds. Our injuries may be different in terms of severity or how they happened but many of the symptoms are the same. Some people bounce right back. I am in the 15% who have had prolonged issues also known as post concussion syndrome or PCS for short. I am getting better slowly and learning to be patient in the process.

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