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The Cognitive FX Blog

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

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Brain Injury Awareness (4)

3 Ways Stress Impacts the Brain

3 Ways Stress Impacts the Brain

Image of Ashley van Biljon
Ashley van Biljon

Oxford Dictionaries defines stress as “a state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or very demanding circumstances.” Everyone is very familiar with experiencing stressful events in their life. Stress occurs every day and comes in various forms. Stress from trying to juggle family, work, friends, and school commitments can be overwhelming. Stress can also develop from issues like health, money, and relationships.

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How to Help the New Driver in Your Home Stay Safe

How to Help the New Driver in Your Home Stay Safe

Image of Ashley van Biljon
Ashley van Biljon

This week is Teen Driver Safety Week, and we want to share some statistics and tips on how to keep your new driver safe in the car. Your teen being a newly licensed driver is a big milestone for you and your teen. Handing the keys to the family car to your teen might make you nervous, bringing to mind the dangers broadcasted at you from every media outlet. Not to fear, taking the right steps and supporting your teen to drive safely can make a difference. Below are three of the most common safety issues and tips on how to address these issues with your driving teen.

No.1 Distracted Driving

It’s no secret that distracted driving is dangerous. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) states that distracted driving is responsible for 15% of all crashes resulting in injuries and 10% of all crashes that concluded in fatalities. Unfortunately, many of these fatal accidents involve teen drivers.

Teens are aware that distracted driving is dangerous. Over 90% of teens have admitted that they are aware of the dangers of texting while driving. Despite being aware, about a third of teens admitted they send or check texts while driving.

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What to do when concussion symptoms last a long time

What to do When Concussion Symptoms Last a Long Time?

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Cognitive FX Team

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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10 Suggestions to Help Prevent Concussions in Sports

10 Suggestions to Help Prevent Concussions in Sports

Savannah Rawl

Did you play sports growing up? Hands down, my favorite sport as a kid was soccer. I loved participating in a sport where I could do something I enjoyed with teamwork involved. There was nothing better than stealing the ball and dribbling down the field past every opposing player, to score the winning goal!

While soccer was an important part of my life as a child, I did not realize the implications it could have caused me. According to the CDC, approximately 1 in 3 (31%) concussions among girls and 1 in 4 (28%) concussions among boys happens in soccer while heading the ball.

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Do Helmets Prevent a Brain Injury

Do Helmets Prevent a Brain Injury?

Savannah Rawl

Helmets are worn in countless sports and activities to protect the head from injury, specifically brain injury. We all wear helmets frequently in our lives, whether it is for something as as simple as biking or as adventurous as zip-lining.

Answer this question for yourself, honestly. Do you wear a helmet 100% of the time while riding a bike or participating in a sport or an activity that requires a helmet?

I remember when I was a young child I did not like wearing my helmet, especially when riding a bike. As a kid, you don’t think about the what ifs. I thought my helmet was inconvenient and uncomfortable. I was under the impression that I looked “cooler” without it. Clearly I wasn’t thinking about the consequences that could occur if I were to fall off my bike.

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8 Guidelines to Reduce the Risk of a Brain Injury for Children

8 Guidelines to Reduce the Risk of a Brain Injury for Children

Savannah Rawl

According to the CDC, “Falls are the leading cause of non-fatal injuries for all children ages 0 to 19.” Each day, there are about 8,000 children who are admitted to emergency rooms due to falls. This amounts to a tragic number of 3 million children each year.

Think of your own child, niece, nephew, or a child you care for. Children are energetic, loud, and curious as they are constantly learning and trying to figure out who they are in this world. They bring so much happiness to our lives with their optimism and genuine spirits. When it comes to protecting your children, preventing a brain injury is more important than it may appear.

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8 Fall Prevention Tips for your Grandparents

8 Fall Prevention Tips for your Grandparents

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Cognitive FX Team

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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10 Things I Wish I Would Have Known Before My Concussion

10 Things I Wish I Would Have Known Before My Concussion

Image of Dr. Mark Allen Ph. D.
Dr. Mark Allen Ph. D.

Past patient, Anna Empey shares her experiences in a series of blog posts including "Perspective After a Brain Injury" and here in this post. 

I sustained my first concussion in July of 2011, playing broom hockey. My roller skates slipped out from under my feet, and I hit the back of my head on the right side on cement.

I didn’t know how severe my concussion was until I went to the doctor a week later with symptoms such as:

  • Blurry Vision
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Not Feeling Like Myself
  • Difficulty remembering things including locations, words, names, and more.
  • Problems sleeping and waking up

At the time, it was diagnosed as a "grade 3" concussion, which means I also had lost consciousness for more than 30 minutes. I was told to rest for a few months, and slowly I got back into my life over the next six months.

I came to Cognitive FX in 2015 about 9 months after I sustained another concussion on the front right side of my head in a car accident. It has taken me time to be grateful for both of my injuries, but most importantly I am thankful for who and where I am now. I wanted to share 10 things I wish I would have known before I had a brain injury.

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Traumatic Brain Injury and Car Accidents

Traumatic Brain Injury and Car Accidents

Guest Author - The Advocates

Out of all of the injuries a person can suffer in an automobile accident, brain injuries are probably one of the worst. The consequences of a brain injury are often severe and long-term. Brain injuries can be as minor as concussions, headaches, and dizziness or involve more serious conditions like memory loss or physical damage to brain tissue. Brain injuries can be difficult to detect and should be treated immediately by a medical professional. 

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The Cost of Distracted Driving Commit to Focus on Driving

The Cost of Distracted Driving: Commit to Focus on Driving

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Cognitive FX Team

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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Can One Treat the Long-Term Effects of Concussion

Can One Treat the Long-Term Effects of Concussion?

Image of Dr. Mark Allen Ph. D.
Dr. Mark Allen Ph. D.

About a year ago I did an interview over the phone with a sports-talk radio show in Texas. The topic was concussion in high school football (Texas is all about high school football). I talked about treatment for long-term concussion effects and how new therapies are available that can be extremely effective. I also mentioned research that shows treatment effectiveness even when the concussion (or concussions) happened years earlier.

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