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What is a Traumatic Brain Injury or TBI?

A traumatic brain injury (TBI) can happen when a person's head collides with an object or an object pierces the skull.

Examples include striking the head on a car's windshield during a car accident and a lawn dart piercing the skull. A TBI can also occur when one person violently assaults another.

Symptoms of a TBI

A TBI can range from mild to severe. Mild TBIs typically include concussions and are often misdiagnosed and under treated. Some of the symptoms commonly associated with mild TBI include:

Blurred vision
Change in mood or behavior
Difficulty with concentration and memory
Loss of consciousness for a few seconds to a few minutes (a person can still have a brain injury without a loss of consciousness)
Ringing in the ears
Sleep disturbance
Change in taste

People who experience a moderate to severe TBI often have many of these same symptoms. However, they also experience the following:

Convulsions or seizures
Difficulty waking up from sleep
Dilation of one or both pupils of the eyes
Increased agitation, confusion, or restlessness
Slurred speech
Poor awareness of changes in thinking
Weakness or numbness in the arms, hands, legs, or feet

It's important to note that you or a loved one may not experience these symptoms right away after a TBI. They could happen days or weeks later. Even if you see a doctor right after the injury and think you feel fine, don't hesitate to get medical help if you start having any of these symptoms.

Treatment for TBI

The treatment you or a family member receive after a TBI depends on its seriousness. Of course, the immediate concern is getting you medically stabilized. Many people go to the emergency room after a TBI and some are admitted to the hospital for surgery or observation.

Rehabilitative care after a TBI is important to help get you back to your highest level of functioning. Your rehabilitation team may include some or all of the following:

Speech therapy: Speech-language pathologists have a variety of roles in the recovery process. They can assist with communication and thinking skills. Therapists at Progressive Therapy Associates help to improve cognitive and executive function skills such as focus and memory, time management, starting and completing tasks, routines (sleep, medications, home and work), managing mental fatigue, reading and understanding, word finding, cognitive endurance, and awareness and insight.

Occupational therapy
Physical therapy
Massage therapy

As a leading provider of speech-language pathology services working with adolescents and adults who have experienced a TBI, we welcome your questions at any time.

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What is a Traumatic Brain Injury or TBI?
Qualified Therapists

Our dedicated team of speech-language pathologists are specially trained in speech therapy as it relates to cognitive-communication issues (how you listen, process, focus, remember, and communicate). We are also nationally certified by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, are nationally recognized by the Brain Injury Association of America and are Certified Brain Injury Specialists (CBIS). We are licensed to practice in both North Dakota and Minnesota. We believe every patient deserves the best treatment and support we can offer in every single contact and interaction with us.

Individual Approach

We recognize that no two people have the same needs and that everyone has different learning styles. That’s why we like to call our approach “the Progressive way,” which means we will happily customize treatment plans to meet the unique needs of the individual and their family. We also believe in “the right fit” between patient and therapist, so will make every effort to match you with a clinician who connects with you, understands you, and utilizes a therapy style that is comfortable for you.

We are here to help

Depending on the goals you wish to accomplish and the learning pace that is most comfortable for you, we will arm you with the evidence-based strategies, proven skills, and ample support you need to feel more organized, prepared, and effective. Therapy strategies may range from recommendations for specific tools (such as timers or planners), one-on-one brainstorming and problem-solving to address concerns, therapeutic activities as well as computer trials or worksheets to help strengthen cognitive and executive functions like attention, memory, and planning.

Coaching with compassion

We know that working on cognitive-communication issues is hard work and that it can be easy to feel defeated or overwhelmed by the challenges of building a more efficient brain. However, you will not be in this alone. We are not just speech-language pathologists; we are fellow human beings who care about you, your journey, and your success. We don’t want an appointment to feel like you’ve been sent to the principal’s office. Instead, you’ll find a comfortable space where you’ll feel listened to and understood. And because humor makes everything more bearable, be prepared to laugh and joke a bit too!