Home » Life with Brain Injury » Practical Advice » Tips for Brain Injured people

Tips by and for brain injured ànd tips by professionals

• Create your own place (in-house or even a guest spot) to pull back, to get rid of overstimulation



• Everything costs effort ... everything takes energy .. consumes energy


• Communicate: it is no reluctance when you (...) (forgot something, you're too tired, you behave 'different' and see also ………)


• Use a checklist for what you have to remember and work on it step by step


• Give everything a permanent place


• Use (color) stickers to keep things apart


• Make your home (or private place) an ordered place where you can avoid overstimulation, possibly together with someone


• Alternate exercise with relaxation on a regular basis


• Don’t plan too much in one day


• Plan days to rest


• Keep a regular routine for both the day and per week, weekly schedule and daily schedule


• Plan regular breaks



Does the bright light on your computer, phone, iPhone or iPad bother you?  Download free f.lux software that adjusts the light! https://justgetflux.com


• If you are irritated or angry with your family then just pull back; Time Out and talk about it when you're calm again


• During you stay in the rehabilitation centre, learn all about social media, a new world will open


• Learn to use Twitter (again), then you learn to think in short sentences, see………..


• Sometimes communicating by Twitter, mail or WhatsApp is easier than talking


• Mail is more comfortable than unexpected calls

 

• Explain to others: we don’t switch so easily from one thing to another (unexpected telephone call, other subject etc.)



• Ask the person that you are talking to, to use short clear sentences instead of long instructions. perhaps a brief explanation on a laminated card can be convenient



• Use memory aids for example: writing booklets, agenda, whiteboard, a recorded message on your smartphone, a calendar, a weekly schedule, etc.



• Avoid rush hour



• Do not do two things at once (for example making coffee and have a conversation)



• Avoid time pressure



• Frequently have small breaks



• Ensure tranquility and reduce distractions


• Adjust activities together and create realistic expectations. Stop comparing with situation before the brain injury



• Provide an emergency plan in case of illness or emergency



• Provide alternative plans



• Write in a separate booklet about all things that went well, are precious, made you happy that day and look at it frequently



• Keep a log and write in it after you visited a doctor, the rehabilitation centre, it helps you to remember things



• Keep a diary or a blog



• Use icons on doors, use aphasia tools also when you have no aphasia, to support you



• Grocery lists
some grocery list sites use images. Also very convenient when you can not think of what should be on your grocery list. Here is one: Check lists, Grocery lists



• Explain to others that washing sounds, background noises, cutlery noises, wooden staircase, wooden floors and ticking clock sounds are really inconvenient



• Reset expectations, because brain injury will never heal



• You can, however, learn step by step to deal with the consequences of the brain injury



• Take seriously your impossibilities, learn to know them, from there you can learn to explore your capabilities



• If you lack notion of time, use timers, alarms on mobile phones or look into useful tools



• If you can’t deal with numbers, ask advice to look for help with your financial records



• Avoid sensory overstimulation if you are overstimulated easily



• Don’t compare yourself to other brain injured, each brain injury is different, each human being is different



• Ask for a place to sit where you don’t have the light coming towards you (for example TL-tube in the hospital, huge window)



• When you visit your doctor, ask for double consultation time



• Finish something before starting something new



• It is useful for others to know that tears come easily, this is not always caused by sadness, but happens at slightest emotion



• Request for concrete and plain language



• You can miss wordplay, when people use them, ask to add ‘joke’



• If there is argument ask yourself whether language has been taken literally



• Be honest in your surroundings and indicate what you are not able to do anymore, look for solutions together



• A step by step cookery book for people with aphasia problems may also be suitable for people who are not able to cook because they have planning problems



• Take your time, take your rest



• Ask friends to help you discover your oversensory signals, maybe other people notice something before you do



• Ask for help monitoring fatigue limits, maybe other people notice something before you do



• When you have to remember a name of someone, link the name in your mind to a logical or funny rhyme, a melody or a picture that you imagine with this person



• Agree upon kindly gestures or voice reminders to stop yourself when you are talking too much



• Agree upon kindly gestures or voice reminders to remind you that you speak with someone and should look at this person, because of wandering thoughts



• Turn off the radio and the TV,  set your mobile phone to mute, remove other distractions before a conversation


• Close the door to avoid other disturbing distractions



• Sit down with your left side to the derivation



• Ask for help to find limits



• Be wary of the trap of overestimation



• Be wary of the trap to push limits when it might be irresponsible



• Be wary of the trap to proof yourself because of lost status, honour and person that you were before the injury, together with someone, look for your new power



• Look for new power wíth brain injury, new sense of purpose, instead of fighting back to your old self from before the injury



• A hint for people who use anticoagulant: fit the door handle vertically instead of horizontally. It prevents you to get stuck and bruise yourself



• Ask people to note keywords of a conversation to help you remember what has been said



• Ask people to summarise what he or she has said in order to check whether you understood well

• Don’t pretend that you understood what has been said when you remember half of it or understood half of it. Ask to repeat what has been said

 


• Keep spirits up, read inspiring blogs of peers, read how they arrived where they are now

 

• Ask for help from a neuropsychologist. They are skilled experts in brain injury, they can help you

 

Try to avoid drinking alcohol

 

• 'Take your rest', this means mostly by not stressing your brains with computing, watching tv or other cognition related activities. Try to find  balance between activity and resting

 

• Please forward to us your best advice, it will help others, thank you!