Introduction to Acquired Brain Injuries
Residential care for adults with an Acquired Brain Injury
An Acquired Brain Injury (ABI) is an injury caused to the brain since birth. There are many possible causes including head injuries which may be from a road accident, a fall or an assault and these are known as traumatic brain injuries (TBI). Other causes may be due to a stroke, tumour, illness or lack of oxygen to the brain.
In the UK, 1 million people live with the effects of an acquired brain injury and each year 135,000 people are admitted to hospital with a head injury.
Different types of brain injury affect different parts of the brain and therefore require different types of treatment. The effects of a brain injury are described as one of three types:
- Cognitive effects – how a person thinks, learns and remembers
- Communication – this is a complex function and requires many different parts of the brain
- Emotional and behavioural effects
For example, if the frontal lobe of the brain is damaged, which may be the case following a road traffic accident (sometimes abbreviated to RTA) then this affects the executive functions of the brain and causes what is known as Executive Dysfunction.
Executive Functioning is a term that encompasses many abilities including:
- Planning and organisation
- Making decisions
- Flexible thinking
- Social behaviour
- Controlling emotions
- Solving unusual problems