The only true cure for brain injury is prevention.
Each year Community Outreach Coordinator, Elsa Ortega, teaches hundreds of children about the value of brain injury prevention. With the aid of books, a brain gel and a small, stuffed elephant named Elvin, children learn about the importance of wearing a helmet, what happens when an injury occurs and what to watch for when they or a classmate bumps their head.
Making Headway staff fits and gives away hundreds of helmets each year. Whether it’s the local Roller Derby, skateboarding, bicycling, or public events such as school assemblies, classrooms, bike rodeos, health fairs or private appointments- proper fitting and application of helmets saves lives and prevents injuries that can change lives and cost millions of dollars to the injured, their families and the community through lost productivity and social services.
Recovery is different for everyone depending on the severity and type of injury they have sustained. While the definition of one’s support system may vary, group and/or family support are extremely important. Daily structure and providing ways to regain basic living skills are parts of a process that for many does not end and hopefully improves over time. In the course of sustaining a TBI, memory is often the first casualty. Forgetting to take or that one has taken meds, preparing food and transportation to medical and mental health resources can become issues of significant magnitude.
Family and Individual Counseling- Relationships change when a family member sustains a TBI and counseling can help to keep families together in a time of great stress and change.
Case Management helps to coordinate the social services that may be needed to assist with the challenges of living with TBI.
Community Reintegration helps the injured to live independently by relearning vital skills that the uninjured may take for granted.
Therapeutic Recreation is one of the best ways to reduce the isolation and depression that is so often associated with TBI is. Recovery and quality of life are often greatly enhanced when the mind and body are active and an experience is shared.