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Brain injury blog, concussion blog

The Cognitive FX Blog

Your source for everything you need to know about traumatic brain injury and concussions.

Cognitive FX Team

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Brain Injury Awareness  |  Concussions  |  Education & Resources  |  Traumatic Brain Injury

Relationships After a Concussion: Healthy Relationships Parents & Kids

Parents love their children and want to provide the best possible support and care for their children. When your child or teen has a concussion or is trying to cope with long-term concussion symptoms, it can be challenging to know what to do and how much to do for your child. We understand watching your loved one be in pain, sort through the frustration and changes that come with experiencing a brain injury is not an easy adjustment for you.   Naturally, we want to reduce the suffering of those we love, we begin to do more things for them with the intention to help them get better faster, or to reduce their level of stress. Sometimes the desire to take care of them can shift the relationship dynamic to a more codependent relationship. As children become young adults, it is important to instill a sense of interdependence, a space that encourages the teen to learn to be independent with support, guidelines, and a safety net. This empowers them to grow into healthy independent adults. This is also true for those who have a concussion and are learning what they are truly capable of. 

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Education & Resources

What Makes Cognitive FX Unique?

Quite often we are asked what makes Cognitive FX unique in relation to clinics that have a background in functional neurology, including Brain Plasticity Centers. Here we review 8 key ways we are unique.  1- Our key founders have a degree in neuroscience or have been to medical school. Two of our founders hold a PhD and two of our founders is an MD. The founders brought together a team of multidisciplinary accredited therapists and trainers, each in their own discipline, to standardize a unique imaging and treatment protocol to effectively treat post-concussion symptoms. This includes neuroscientists, speech-language pathologists, psychologists, athletic trainers, licensed massage therapists, occupational therapists, and other professionals.  2- The thing that makes us the most unique is our objective imaging. Functional Neurocognitive Imaging (fNCI) looks at different regions of the brain and gives you a clear view of which brain regions are working correctly and which ones are not working as they should. This imaging is looking directly at your brain, not at any other parts of the body. When a doctor only looks at symptoms to try to figure out what is going on in the brain, things can be missed or misdiagnosed. The fact that we treat the source of symptoms rather than the symptoms alone is very important. This empowers our multidisciplinary therapists and trainers to have a clear direction and create a plan to help you make significant improvements.

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Concussions  |  Education & Resources

Diagnosing Concussion with functional NeuroCognitive Imaging

What imaging is used to diagnose a brain injury? After a concussion or any hit to the head, you go to the doctor, and they tell you might have a concussion, but that it is no big deal because your symptoms will just go away with some rest right? Sometimes, but not usually. It would be nice to know exactly how you are feeling to provide the best overall treatment and a new imaging technology can do that. A Functional Magnetic Resonance Image (fMRI) is an imaging technique used to diagnose concussion and recognizes changes in the brain while you are asked to engage in cognitive tasks. Most people have heard of an MRI and but fewer have heard of a functional MRI (fMRI). So what are they and what is the difference between them? MRI produces static images of the anatomy of the brain and a functional MRI produces images of what is going on inside the brain as it is working.   Functional NeuroCognitive Imaging (fNCI) fNCI is a unique form of a fMRI that uses specific tests to measure how the brain is functioning. fNCI is over 98% accurate at diagnosing concussions. In the past, concussions have been subjectively diagnosed by either giving the individual a post-concussion symptom scale (PCSS) to rate the severity of their symptoms or by asking the patient if they went unconscious after getting hit. 

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Brain Injury Awareness  |  Concussions  |  Education & Resources  |  Post Concussion Treatment

What to do When Concussion Symptoms Last a Long Time?

Currently, many doctors and other medical professionals tell their patients that the majority of people who have a concussion will recover in a short amount of time (under a month). However, new studies are showing that the risk for long-term symptoms is much higher than doctors and concussion specialists previously thought. Before seeking treatment at Cognitive FX, the majority of our almost 1,000 patients struggled with their symptoms for years. We have treated patients who suffered needlessly from post-concussion symptoms for many decades. Among the oldest concussions we’ve treated was a concussion from 60 years ago. Many of these patients had given up hope that recovery was possible. They saw their symptoms as a permanent part of their lives and futures. However, our research and patient improvement reports continue to prove that patients can drastically improve from their post-concussion symptoms. So what should you do if you fall into this growing percentage of the population with long-term PCS? Below are the first steps you can take toward your recovery.

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Concussions  |  Education & Resources  |  Post Concussion Treatment

Connection Between Concussion Symptoms and Brain Function

The brain loves taking the path of least resistance. This is true for blood flow and also for sending the communication signals in the brain when neurons are firing. Even a simple task requires different brain regions to work, or function, together at whatever you are trying to accomplish, be it reading this post, driving, writing, singing a song, or doing something as simple as opening your eyes, yawning, or breathing. Overall, when we are talking about brain function, we are talking about the ability for the neurons, the blood flow, and other systems in your brain to work and communicate with one another to do their job. After mTBI, injured regions of the brain can swell. Because the brain wants to take the path of least resistance, it will use different neuronal pathways to avoid the areas where there is inflammation. This change restricts blood flow in one or more regions of your brain, causing other regions to compensate for the regions that are injured. This means that different regions are over-exerting themselves to complete the work of the injured brain regions. Think of it as a receptionist who, on top of completing her own responsibilities, now has to do the job and work of the accounting department and the CEO. This imbalanced blood flow is what we call dysregulation, or dysfunction.

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Brain Injury Awareness  |  Concussions  |  Education & Resources

New Concussion Guide Now Available

Over the last few months our team has been working on a new booklet to raise the level of awareness and education around concussions.

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Brain Safety & Care

10 Summer Self-Care Tips

Self-care is something we all forget about—until we push ourselves too far. We want to give you a new perspective on self-care as you continue to enjoy this summer. Often, we see or hear that self-care is taking a bubble bath or taking a nap, which could be part of self-care for you. These are relaxing, but here when we talk about self-care we are not just talking about relaxing. Another way to see self-care is taking care of your well-being. When we see the connection between self-care and well-being, we can recognize it as the foundation to have a life we want. This adds a new level of importance to taking care of ourselves and those we love. When creating a summer routine, here are 10 things to consider incorporating into your life to support you and your family. When we take care of our well-being this makes us available to support others in their well-being as well.

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Life After EPIC Treatment

The Traumatic Recovery Process

The EPIC Treatment method often brings about a significant amount of brain change in a short period of time, causing new blood flow regulation in your brain that can be drastically different than where it has been for a very long time. As with any sudden changes, the effects of this process, while overwhelmingly positive, can have some associated challenges. We call this the Traumatic Recovery Process. Every brain is unique. Every injury is unique. Thus, every recovery is unique. Understanding what to expect in the time after your week of EPIC Treatment can help you prepare for and successfully overcome these challenges.

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Brain Safety & Care  |  Life After EPIC Treatment

Importance of Drinking Water for Your Brain

Water. Something we don’t really think about until we are hit with a gigantic wave of what feels like an unquenchable thirst. We then spend the next few minutes chugging water like it is the last thing we will ever do. We are all really good at coming up with excuses for why we haven’t had enough water.

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Life After EPIC Treatment

Perspective After Brain Injury Throughout Recovery

Everything Changed After My Brain Injury Past patient, Anna Empey shares her experiences in a series of blog posts including "10 Things I Wish I had known Before my Brain Injury", "Journaling Through Recovery" and here in this post.  I lived with post-concussion symptoms, from two separate brain injuries, for almost five years. It was one of the hardest periods in my life,  trying to make it through each day, dealing with the migraines, and fighting to live a somewhat typical life. My second injury, which was about three years into recovering from the first injury, had pretty intense impacts on my life. I pretty much quit everything I was doing. I had to keep my job and focus on working 40 hours a week, dealing with constant exhaustion and fatigue. I started avoiding crowds and people in my daily life, and, eventually, I stopped communicating much with anyone because finding words was hard. I also lived with light and sound sensitivity along with short and long-term memory problems. At this point, it was hard to see the glass half full, and I pretty much lived like my glass was half empty. 

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Brain Safety & Care  |  Education & Resources  |  Life After EPIC Treatment

What Causes Headaches?

Headaches can be a tricky symptom to address. They are often one of several symptoms that may present itself after a concussion or traumatic brain injury (TBI). On another hand, headaches are not a requirement to support an actual diagnosis in a TBI or post-concussion symptoms (PCS). 

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Brain Injury Awareness  |  Brain Safety & Care  |  Concussions  |  Traumatic Brain Injury

8 Fall Prevention Tips for your Grandparents

Adults 65+ years have the highest rates of traumatic brain injury (TBI) deaths, according to the New York Department of Health. Regardless of your age now, we all get older, even if we don’t want to. You can also think about your parents and grandparents, and the importance of helping those you love prevent an injury. Through these tips, you can learn how to reduce the risk of the elderly, or yourself from a concussion or brain injury. While a brain injury cannot fully be prevented here are some suggestions.  Here are some tips to help prevent falls, specifically for the elderly:

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Cognitive FX News

 Brain Injury Awareness Event in Chicago Area with The Cognitive FX Foundation

The Cognitive FX Foundation is excited to present an afternoon about Brain Injury Awareness with TBI Survivor and Advocate Rekha Iyer. More Speakers include: Stephanie Kifowit, Illinois State Representative along with TBI Survivor, Amy Zellmer, Dr. Ryan Edwards and Dr. Lindsey Stull from the Dynamic Center for Vision Therapy, Chrys Chrysanthou the CEO of ClearEdge Brain Health Toolkit and Jash Desai. Please joins us this Saturday, March 31, in Oak Brook, Illinois from 3-5 pm. Donations of $25 per person to attend are encouraged but not required. RSVP Here  This event will kickstart efforts to advance industry changing brain research, make treatment available to more people, and deliver to the masses the correct education to inspire impactful legislative changes.

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Cognitive FX News

BIAU Gives the 2017 Professional Award to Dr. Lynn Gaufin a Cognitive FX Partner

Written by the Brain Injury Alliance of Utah 

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Brain Safety & Care  |  Education & Resources  |  Life After EPIC Treatment

Now is the Time for a New Routine

As we start a new year, now is an excellent time to implement a new routine to help you live the life you want. Not sure where to start? Begin by thinking about these questions:

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Education & Resources

Helping Those You Love with Post-Concussion Syndrome Survive the Holidays

During the holidays it gets hectic and extremely stressful, particularly for those who already are trying to cope with everyday life with post-concussion syndrome or a concussion.

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Concussions  |  Education & Resources  |  Traumatic Brain Injury

Is a Concussion a Brain Injury?

As Susan A. Connors said, “No brain injury is too mild to ignore or too severe to lose hope, but all brain injuries – including concussion – should be taken seriously.” Yes. a concussion is considered a brain injury.   Many may not realize a concussion is a brain injury because it is called "mild," but it is vital that we recognize that ANY damage to the brain is a brain injury. We take concussions very seriously here at Cognitive FX and we specialize in concussion treatment along with treatment for other neurological diseases.  No matter how normal a person with a concussion may appear, a concussion can have significant impact on an individual’s life and their ability to function. We are finding that the right treatment protocols can bring improvement, even for individuals who have been diagnosed with Post-Concussion Syndrome. 

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Brain Injury Awareness  |  Brain Safety & Care  |  Concussions

To Sleep or to Drive? – Driving Drowsy Prevention Week 2017

Drowsy driving prevention focuses on "Stay alert, arrive alive." The national sleep foundation is helping to raise awareness of drowsy driving and the risks of driving when you are tired. 

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Life After EPIC Treatment

Benefits of a Booster Day

Booster Days are designed to help previous Cognitive FX patients obtain additional support after EPIC Treatment if needed.

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Education & Resources

4 Ways to Have an Injury Free Halloween

It’s getting to be that time when children’s obsession with all things strange and maybe slightly scary is reaching an all-time high. They are picking out costumes, eagerly awaiting the sugar high they’ll inevitably have, followed no doubt by a SERIOUS sugar crash. It’s an exciting time; they get to be somebody else for just one night. Let’s go over some safety tips and tricks to ensure that the worst parts about Halloween are sugar crashes and an increased chance of cavities.

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Brain Injury Awareness  |  Brain Safety & Care  |  Education & Resources

The Cost of Distracted Driving: Commit to Focus on Driving

When it comes to multitasking, we all think we’re great at it, but really only about 2% of people can successfully multitask, according to Psychology Today. Even if you think you MIGHT be one of these people, chances are, you’re probably not. Yet it seems that we all like to test out that theory in inappropriate places, specifically when we’re on the road. Most of us have sent a text or talked on the phone while driving, but we also all have been in or know someone who has been in an accident involving distracted driving. You’d think we would have gotten the hint by now, especially with driving laws being the way that they are. According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, “ 15 states prohibit all drivers from using hand-held cellphones while driving”, and “all states except 2 include at least one category for distraction on police crash report forms.”

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Cognitive FX News

Employee Feature - Amber Klepacz

Amber received her Bachelor’s Degree in Athletic Training from Brigham Young University in December of 2016. She is a certified and licensed athletic trainer. She also works at the Missionary Training Center in Provo, where she responds to and helps rehabilitate missionaries in training who hurt themselves during their recreation time. While she was a student at BYU, she participated in clinical rotations with local sites, including BYU’s football team, BYU’s softball team, and Provo High School’s athletics.

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Concussions  |  Education & Resources  |  Post Concussion Treatment

New Strategies to Improve Outcomes of Concussion Treatment

Dr. Mark Allen, and Dr. Alina Fong presented at Pink Concussions 4th conference Pink 4 hosted in Rome, Italy after the Pediatric Aquired Brain Injury Conference.  This presentation explores important topics related to concussion research and development which leads to better concussion treatment, and treatment outcomes.  

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Brain Safety & Care  |  Concussions

5 Ways to Prevent a Brain Injury

According to the CDC, “there are around 2.8 million TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury)-related emergency department visits, hospitalizations, and deaths each year in the United States. TBI contributed to the deaths of almost 50,000 people. TBI was a diagnosis in more than 282,000 hospitalizations and 2.5 million ER visits. These consisted of TBI alone or TBI in combination with other injuries.” 

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Life After EPIC Treatment  |  Patient Stories

How Writing Can Help You During Concussion Recovery

Past patient, Anna Empey shares her experiences in a series of blog posts including "Perspective After a Brain Injury," "10 Things I Wish I had Know Before my Brain Injury," and here in this post.   When I first was recovering, I felt like I couldn’t find words to write about my experience. I couldn’t explain either written or vocally how I was feeling or what I was going through. Over time, writing became something that helped me learn how to gather my thoughts and express myself. I focused more on the act of writing something down rather than if it was written perfectly or exactly accurate. Continually writing helped me find ways to get better at it.

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Cognitive FX News  |  Post Concussion Treatment

How Cognitive FX Got Started

Long before Cognitive FX was created, Dr. Mark Allen, PhD, and Dr. Alina Fong, PhD began searching for a greater understanding of the brain. Their focus has been on how the brain works and how each region of the brain contributes to functionality. As they began searching for answers, they began to understand how the brain functions, and its subtle but powerful abilities. Over time after collecting a wealth of data, they established a strong foundation of what a normal brain should function like and created an objective scale where we can measure where individuals should be for optimal brain functioning. Clinical Application of fNCI Begins After years researching and applying the technology of fMRI and adapting it they started a company with key partners called Notus, which provided the technology known as Notus Functional NeuroCognitive Imaging or fNCI. Notus started applying this technology in the clinical setting as interest grew in the community. This technology is now used in military hospitals, clinics, private hospitals, and more. Clinicians see that fNCI is useful as a diagnostic tool to understand what is happening with their patients in ways they could not understand before. fNCI inspects over 60 distinct regions of the brain. For example, physicians can better understand a complex brain injury by understanding which brain regions are not working instead of using a one word summary "concussion".

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Brain Safety & Care  |  Education & Resources  |  Life After EPIC Treatment

5 Ways to Improve Your Sleeping Habits

Sleep: something we tell ourselves we don’t have time for, yet we always seem to need more of it.

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Brain Safety & Care  |  Education & Resources

5 Ways to Get Ready for Fall Sports

The new school year is just around the corner; kids are preparing for another year of learning, friendships, and experiences, and mothers are rejoicing everywhere! Whether it’s vocabulary tests, after school clubs, or sports, your kids are going to be kept pretty busy, and you want them to have the best and safest year possible. The benefits of getting children physically active at a young age are numerous. According to The Aspen Institute, physically active children are 15% more likely to attend college, score up to 40% higher on tests, and are 1/10th as likely to be obese. Whether this is their first year or their last participating in sports, every child wants to perform the best they can. Every parent wants their child to have a good time while also staying safe so they can keep playing the sports they love now and lead healthier and more successful lives later. http://youthreport.projectplay.us/the-solution Here are some tips on things to help you keep your athlete safe and have a successful season.

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Brain Safety & Care  |  Education & Resources  |  Life After EPIC Treatment

Top 5 Foods for Brain Health 

The brain is the most important organ in the human body. It regulates the profuse amount of information that the body needs to regulate itself. This includes comprehending pain levels, regulating blood pressure, controlling nervous response, creating and secreting hormones, assisting digestion, along with coordinating the countless other signals the body sends to the brain to help our body function. It is so important to give your brain the vital nutrients it needs to keep your body running in tip top shape.

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Cognitive FX News

Employee Feature | Ariel Cook

Ariel is a Neurological occupational Therapist at Cognitive FX. 

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Brain Safety & Care  |  Education & Resources  |  Life After EPIC Treatment

The Just Right Challenge - When to Rest & When to Push Your Limits

The Cognitive FX EPIC Treatment program is designed to help patients recover from a concussion in a week.  Centered around the specific deficits and symptoms of each patient, this week is intense for the mind, brain, and body, and uniquely customized to each individual. We use standard modalities that have been amplified for our patient’s specific needs such as Neurological Occupational Therapy, NeuroMuscular Therapy, Vision Therapy, Brain Games, De-stimulation and more.  Our team focuses on giving the “Just Right Challenge” to help our patients know when to push through an exercise or when to rest or slow down a bit. The “Just Right Challenge” is simple. As you start the day you work to get to your optimal activity level. We often try to push through the mental and or physical challenges. Instead of pushing through pain and symptoms to the point of crashing, we have you slow down or take a short break , with the goal to get back to your optimal activity level again. As you move forward with this challenge, the goal is to need and take fewer breaks. 

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Education & Resources  |  Post Concussion Treatment

Patient Outcomes at Cognitive FX Based on Gender, Age, Mode of Injury, and Time Since Injury

On a regular basis, we’re asked if gender and/or age influence one’s ability to recover. We are also asked if how someone was injured, or how long it has been since their injury will influence their ability to recover. Our research has found that while it is important to understand these demographics, these factors don’t deter the ability to recover in a short period of time.

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Education & Resources  |  Post Concussion Treatment

Objective and Subjective Measurements in Our Research

Any good scientist knows that in every good data set there must be a way to look at the data objectively and subjectively. Without both types of data, it can be hard to have a full picture and understanding of what is being studied. What Does Objective Measurement Mean? Objective measurement is something that is measured consistently. For example, measuring how well someone can perform a set number of tasks in a controlled environment. There are no other factors that can alter the data gathered with this measurement.

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Brain Safety & Care  |  Education & Resources  |  Post Concussion Treatment  |  Traumatic Brain Injury

Differences Between Post-Concussion Syndrome (PCS) & Chronic Trauma Encephalopathy (CTE)

A concussion is a traumatic brain injury (TBI) which is caused by the brain hitting the skull. This can happen in sports, car accidents, falling, or anything similar. A concussion can even be the result of a whiplash. Whenever the body moves quickly back and forth and the brain in turn hits the inside of the skull, it can result in a concussion. A concussion can cause damage to nerves and neurons, alter the blood flow in the brain, and cause chemical and functionality changes in the brain.

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Education & Resources  |  Post Concussion Treatment  |  Traumatic Brain Injury

The Value of Objective Concussion Diagnosis and Assessment

Using functional NeuroCognitive Imaging (fNCI) brain scan technology, we are able to measure the function and activation levels of 60 regions in the brain. We can clearly and objectively see which parts of the brain are working too hard or not working hard enough.  Many of our patients are grateful for the objective analysis of fNCI because it gives them a precise understanding of how their injury is influencing their brain's ability to work efficiently.

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Cognitive FX News

Employee Feature | Bethany Lewis

Bethany Lewis is a Neurological Occupational Therapist here at Cognitive FX.

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Concussions  |  Education & Resources  |  Traumatic Brain Injury

What is NeuroVascular Coupling?

Neuro refers to brain cells, also known as Neurons; Vascular means the blood supply or blood flow which is the same as the vascular system; and Coupling means connection. NeuroVascular Coupling (NVC) is the connection between neurons and their vascular supply, which is their energy source required to function properly.

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Post Concussion Treatment

What to Expect During a Complimentary Consultation?

Cognitive FX offers a complimentary consultation to all potential patients who suffer from a wide variety of things ranging from sports or vehicle injuries to general cognitive decline from other non-injury related factors. To schedule a consultation with one of our Neuroscience Practitioners, simply complete a set of forms online found here.  Once we receive your paperwork, we will review it to ensure your situation is a good fit for our services. For example, we do not treat addiction. We want to make sure that we can help you get better based on your specific concerns and symptoms. We have helped individuals recover from concussions, neurological problems from lead poisoning, neurological problems from carbon monoxide poisoning, along with helping the brain to function better after stroke(s).

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Education & Resources  |  Post Concussion Treatment

fNCI – The Most Objective Method to Diagnose a Concussion

fNCI Beginnings & Research  For over a decade, Notus Neuropsychological Imaging has been researching the human brain and the effects of concussion.  During this time, Notus developed an imaging technology called Functional NeuroCognitive Imaging (fNCI) that examines over 60 regions of the brain, making it possible to objectively diagnose a concussion or mTBI.  fNCI can accurately depict which brain regions are overcompensating for others and which regions are not working enough, giving the therapists at Cognitive FX specific neuromarkers that clarify the severity and extent of a concussion.

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Education & Resources

NeuroVascular Coupling the Secret to Recovering from a Concussion

After decades of research, Cognitive FX, in collaboration with Notus Neuropsychological Imaging, found the secret to understanding and recovering from a concussion: NeuroVascular Coupling (NVC). NVC is essentially the connection between the neurons, the astrocyte, and the amount of oxygen, and other nutrients from our vascular supply (blood flow) in our brain.

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Education & Resources  |  Post Concussion Treatment

Active Rehabilitation Key to Successfully Recovering from Concussion

For years the protocol has been to rest until symptoms stop, and that if you start participating in an activity and you experience symptoms to stop what you are doing and rest. In the first few weeks after initial injury, rest is important and can help prepare the brain to be active and function properly again, and for the majority of people they recover from their injury in this time frame. There are however a group of individuals (around 15% of those diagnosed with a concussion) where symptoms persist after a few weeks. Typically, the diagnosis is post-concussion syndrome. So when do you stop resting and start being active again? 

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Cognitive FX News

Jarcam Sports and Cognitive FX Collaborate to Provide Better Treatment Options for Veterans Suffering from Head Injuries

For Immediate Release – April 3, 2017, Provo, UT

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Education & Resources  |  Traumatic Brain Injury

The Truth About Neuroplasticity

Dr. Norman Doidge M.D. is a psychiatrist and a psychoanalyst. He has written many books including New York Times Best Seller, “The Brain that Changes Itself.” He also has written “The Brain’s Way of Healing.” Both books focus on the unique ways the brain changes and heals itself based on the concept of Neuroplasticity.

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Cognitive FX News

Dr. Alina Fong, Director of Cognitive FX in Utah, Joins the U.S. BIA Public Policy Committee

Dr. Alina Fong, Director of Cognitive FX in Utah, Joins the U.S. BIA Public Policy Committee Clinical Neuropsychologist will play an advisory role on national committee . For Immediate Release –Washington, D.C. Members of the United States Brain Injury Alliance (USBIA) Public Policy Committee Public Policy are thrilled to announce that Dr. Alina Fong of Utah has stepped onto their committee. Dr. Fong is an active and engaged member of the board for the Brain Injury Alliance of Utah, an affiliate of the USBIA, and is a respected national expert in concussion. The Public Policy Committee reviews and endorses legislation for the entire USBIA network and works with the Congressional Brain Injury Task Force, chaired by Congressman Bill Pascrell of New Jersey and Todd Russell Platts of Pennsylvania.

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Cognitive FX News

Employee Feature | Emily Harrison

Emily is a NeuroCognitive Therapist here at Cognitive FX. 

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Life After EPIC Treatment

Establishing a New Daily Routine

By Brittany Prijatel, Sports Psychology Consultant With the new year comes new changes. I would like to give you 6 ways to help you identify changes that you want to make and how to fit them into a current daily routine or schedule. 1- Have a clear idea of what it is that you want to incorporate into your daily routine. How much time do I want/have to commit to this activity each day/week? 2- Map out what your current schedule is like during the day/week. It is always easier to do this with someone else so that you do not criticize and instead you analyze. There are many ways you can map out a daily routine. One way is to start with a piece of paper and write the hours from 7 am to 11 pm down the side (Hours may vary depending on your schedule). Then block out the time for each activity you are doing that day. Then you can easily see where time is going, where to add in the things you want to incorporate and what to adjust.

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Cognitive FX News

Cognitive FX at the 2017 Your Health Expo

Cognitive FX is excited to announce that we will be at this year’s Your Health Expo on February 25 from 9 am to 6 pm at the South Towne Expo.

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Life After EPIC Treatment  |  Mental Health Support After a Brain Injury  |  Post Concussion Treatment

Positive Self-Talk: Changing Our Mind to Change Our Actions

By Brittany Pritajel Self-talk is a necessary skill to develop as you seek to increase your well-being. Self-talk is managing what you say to yourself (either out loud or in your head). As you look to improve your life after a concussion or injury you may target changing your behavior. It is important to know that behind the behavior is thoughts because what you think affects how you feel, and how you feel affects how you behave. You can change how you talk to yourself. Positive self-talk can support you as you make changes in your life and strive to reach your goals in your concussion recovery.

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Cognitive FX News

Employee Feature | Brittany Prijatel

Brittany Prijatel is an EPIC Coach here at Cognitive FX.

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Education & Resources  |  Life After EPIC Treatment  |  Mental Health Support After a Brain Injury  |  Traumatic Brain Injury

Having & Keeping Motivation in 4 Steps

By Brittany Prijatel, Sports Psychology Consultant Motivation comes and goes, but one thing to remember is that it is possible to cultivate motivation. You can find and create motivation even when you are feeling unmotivated.  As we move forward into the new year, we are at the height of personal change as well as establishing new routines. Here are 4 tips to keep in mind as we approach all the changes that we are looking to incorporate into our life.

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Patient Stories

Joan's Story & Concussion Treatment

This Christmas we received many letters and thank you notes from some of our past patients. Joan shared her experience with us, and we wanted to share her experience with you.

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Education & Resources  |  Life After EPIC Treatment  |  Post Concussion Treatment

Setting & Achieving Goals

Everyone has their own ideas and opinions about goals and goal setting. One of the things that I notice as I work with individuals during EPIC concussion treatment, is that a lot of time it is not the goals that we are failing at but instead the goal setting. It may sound like a small difference but it can have a huge impact on achieving our goals.

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Cognitive FX News

Employee Feature | Jake Carluccio

Jake is a Neuromuscular Therapist here at Cognitive FX. 

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Education & Resources  |  Life After EPIC Treatment  |  Mental Health Support After a Brain Injury

7 Ways to Unleash the Power of Positive Thinking

Barbara Fredrickson, a psychology researcher at the University of North Carolina, conducted a study about the ways positive thinking affects us. She is quantifying positivity with emotions and life impact using a positive outlook.

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Brain Safety & Care  |  Education & Resources  |  Life After EPIC Treatment  |  Mental Health Support After a Brain Injury

Cultivating Gratitude

By Brittany Prijatel - Sports Psychological Consultant Gratitude is a profound tool for cultivating positivity. Gratitude is simply the conscious act of bringing your attention to what you have or want to appreciate. More importantly, gratitude is a choice. By taking the time to appreciate the abundance that we have in our lives, we create a momentum towards receiving even more. When you begin to say thank you for the things that you have, and the kindness others share, you truly notice all the great things you have to be thankful for each day. Gratitude has been demonstrated to have a large impact on multiple areas of your life. By being grateful studies have shown that individuals have seen improvements with: Immune System A Decrease in Blood Pressure Improvements in Sleep & Relationships Increases in Happiness More Feelings of Enthusiasm, Interest, Attentiveness, Energy, & Determination

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Cognitive FX News

Employee Feature | Jessica Heath

Jessica Heath is a Neurological Occupational Therapist here at Cognitive FX. Jessica received her degree in Occupational Therapy from the University of Utah. Jessica has mostly worked with individuals that are recovering from stroke or brain injuries and brings a lot of experience and insight to patients throughout their week of EPIC Treatment. We asked Jessica to share her thoughts on what makes Cognitive FX an effective clinic for patient outcomes.

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Life After EPIC Treatment

Taking Awareness with You After EPIC Treatment

By Brittany Prijatel – Cognitive FX Sports Psychology Consultant   The pinnacle of improvement is awareness. Before you can implement any sort of mental skills or techniques to help manage daily symptoms, it is important to understand the biggest piece of the puzzle is cultivating awareness. Awareness allows you to understand your symptoms as well as what may trigger them. This empowers you to create a better situation, a better day, and a better life. After EPIC Treatment it is important that you practice and use awareness to continue improving. 5 Ways to Practice Awareness & Improve Your Daily Life

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Brain Safety & Care  |  Education & Resources  |  Mental Health Support After a Brain Injury  |  Post Concussion Treatment

Awareness & Concussion Recovery

By Britany Prijatel - Cognitive FX Sports Psychology Consultant  What is Awareness? Awareness is defined as having knowledge, or being in the state or condition of being conscious of your surroundings. This concept can be applied to many different subjects, but awareness is an important part of understanding a concussion and your recovery process. It takes awareness to facilitate change, even if it is changing a mindset. 

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Employee Feature | April Crystal

April Crystal is one of our NeuroCognitive Therapists here at Cognitive FX.

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Concussions  |  Education & Resources  |  Traumatic Brain Injury

Imaging Technologies Used to Diagnose a Concussion

There are a variety of imaging technologies that can be used to look at a brain injury or a concussion, and are used in unique ways to address and review specific concerns with a head injury. These imaging technologies each have their place and use in addressing and understanding not only a brain injury and concussions but many injuries that may occur throughout our bodies. It is important to know that not all imaging technologies are alike or able to clear detect and diagnose a concussion.

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Employee Feature | Brady Tucker

Brady Tucker is a Research Associate here at Cognitive FX.

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Brain Safety & Care  |  Education & Resources  |  Life After EPIC Treatment

Using the Brock String Test to Strengthen Your Eyes

 What is the Brock String Test?  The Brock String Test is designed to test and treat visual perception problems. This is important because these problems can contribute to headaches, blurry vision, balance problems, and more. Symptoms that can be caused by a concussion. The Brock String Test really looks at two different things: convergence and suppression.

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Brain Safety & Care  |  Concussions  |  Education & Resources

Know Your Concussion Myths and Facts

We know that there are millions of individuals who suffer from concussions yearly. There is no better time than now to expand our knowledge and application of research to help individuals recognize there is hope and recovery when addressing brain injury. There is a lot of information available about concussions and mTBI (mild Traumatic Brain Injury) and we want to share what recent research has taught us when it comes to concussion myths and facts.  Concussion Myth: To get a concussion one must pass out or hit their head. mTBI is defined as “the result of the forceful motion of the head or impact causing brief change in mental status (confusion, disorientation or memory loss) or loss of consciousness for less than 30 minutes.” Notice here the definition mentions forceful motion OR impact OR loss of consciousness. Concussion Fact: You can get a concussion without passing out and/or without hitting your head. Since the brain is essentially floating in water and connected to our spinal cord via the brain stem one can get a concussion from forceful motion of the head, like whiplash. Yes, hitting your head can increase your risks of having a concussion but you do not have to pass out or receive a hard hit to sustain a concussion.

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Cognitive FX News

Employee Feature | Benjamin Wing

Benjamin Wing is our Research Associate Director here at Cognitive FX.

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Cognitive FX News

Employee Feature | Lindsey

Lindsey is our Lead Psychometrist here at Cognitive FX.

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Education & Resources  |  Post Concussion Treatment  |  Traumatic Brain Injury

The Brain's Way of Healing

In the new edition of The Brain's Way of Healing written by Dr. Norman Doidge, M.D.  Cognitive FX is highlighted as a clinic that is taking new scientific research and applying it to the clinical environment.  Dr. Doidge has reviewed our treatment protocols in person and has referred patients to us as well.  We are grateful for all his support and interest in what we do and recommend people read both The Brain that Changes Itself and The Brain's way of Healing.  Both books provide excellent content on how the brain functions and how through neuroplasticity individuals can overcome injuries.

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Brain Safety & Care  |  Education & Resources

Free Advanced Concussion Baseline Testing

A nationally recognized concussion treatment and research center in Provo, UT has implemented a new community outreach program targeted at student athletes.  Cognitive FX is offeringno-cost concussion baseline testing. We are using a thoroughtesting protocol than any other concussion baseline testing protocol. The baseline testing is done prior to any concussive trauma then used in diagnosing concussions and assisting with the return to play decision as required by Utah House Bill 204.

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Brain Safety & Care  |  Education & Resources

Computerized Concussion Testing

Computerized Concussion Tests As concern about sports concussion has continued to rise over the last few years, there has been some hope that large-scale baseline testing, such as computerized cognitive tests, would help teams, schools, coaches and parents. The hope was that baseline tests could help athletes avoid some of the more serious consequences of multiple concussions. Computerized baseline tests or concussion testing is relatively cheap and can be used to test a large number of athletes in a short amount of time. But recent studies are showing that we need to use more than baseline tests to understand the influence of concussion. 

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Concussions  |  Education & Resources  |  Post Concussion Treatment  |  Traumatic Brain Injury

Concussion Treatment Versus No Treatment

At Cognitive FX we use both subjective and objective testing to discover how effective the treatment of a concussion is. During EPIC Treatment we use two fNCI scans one to definitively show where you were injured and another to understand how effective your concussion treatment has been. Our research shows the comparison between patients who go through our concussion treatment or receive no EPIC treatment at all. How effective is EPIC Treatment?  At Cognitive FX we use fNCI (functional NeuroCognitive Imaging) to diagnose concussion(s), create a concussion treatment plan, and evaluate treatment effectiveness. The advantage of fNCI is that it is able to reveal indicators or “neuromarkers” of a concussion. These neuromarkers give us an idea of how severe the concussive effects are and which areas of the brain are most affected. The example below is an illustration of one of the known concussion neuromarkers and compares a patient who scores high on that neuromarker (more impairment) to one who scores low (less impairment).

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Concussions  |  Education & Resources  |  Post Concussion Treatment  |  Traumatic Brain Injury

Difference Between fMRI and MRI Scans

fMRI (functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging) is often a more sensitive method for detecting brain injury such as concussion than a standard MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) brain scan. fNCI (functional NeuroCognitive Imaging) which is an advanced form of fMRI is particularly effective when detecting and understanding brain injury. This may be especially important for certain classes of patients—such as those with mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI)—who display clear symptoms of a concussion with cognitive and neurological impairment but show no obvious brain tissue damage on standard MRI scans.

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