Join the "Walk for Thought" on May 20, 2017

01 April 2017

Traumatic Brain Injury: Did you know?

  • Every 23 seconds, one person in the U.S. sustains a traumatic brain injury.
  • 8,000 Vermonters are currently living with a traumatic brain injury.
  • Falls is the leading cause of traumatic brain injury.
  • Direct medical costs and indirect costs (such as lost productivity) of TBI totalled an estimated $60 billion in the United States in 2000.

 (Source: http://www.biavt.org/learn-more/about-brain-injury.html)

Traumatic Brain Injury, otherwise known as “TBI”, is an insult to the brain caused by an external physical force that may result in an impairment of cognitive abilities or physical functions. Acquired Brain Injury (ABI) is another term used to describe TBI and includes internal injuries to the brain such as a blood clot, stroke or lack of oxygen.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that at least 5.3 million Americans currently have a long-term or lifelong need for help to perform activities of daily living as a result of a TBI. According to one study, about 40% of those hospitalized with a TBI had at least one unmet need for services one year after their injury. The most frequent unmet needs were:

  • Improving memory and problem solving
  • Managing stress and emotional upsets
  • Controlling one's temper
  • Improving one's job skills

In Vermont, people who are eligible for Medicaid and have a severe TBI or ABI, may be eligible for coverage to pay for rehabilitative services, life skills training and care at home or in a residential setting through the TBI Program. However, many people with a mild to moderate brain injury, such as a concussion, may continue to have life-changing symptoms including:

  • Headaches that don’t go away
  • Trouble remembering
  • Getting lost or confused
  • Trouble with vision, hearing or taste
  • Loss of coordination

The Brain Injury Association of Vermont (BIAVT) provides critical information and assistance to Vermonters who want to learn more about TBI, search for help or want to donate their time or money to help others with TBI. Each October, the BIAVT organizes the Vermont Brain Injury Conference where survivors, their family and TBI professionals get together and celebrate successes, support each other, learn more about TBI and strategies for living well.  

One way you can help is to participate in the BIAVT’s annual “Walk for Thought” fundraiser on May 20, 2017 at Oakledge Park in Burlington. Accept the challenge and sign up now at https://biavt.donorpages.com/WalkforThought2017/. For more information call the BIAVT Toll-Free Helpline: 1-877-856-1772 or go to http://www.biavt.org/.

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Megan Tierney-Ward, Division Director
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Waterbury, VT 05671-2070
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This is a Division of the
Department of Disabilities, Aging and Independent Living
under the Agency of Human Services