A concussion is a type of mild traumatic brain injury. If you hear the term “mild” in relation to a brain injury, you may feel as if it is not really that serious. In this article, we will discuss if that is true and what it means to be diagnosed with a mild traumatic brain injury (MBTI). We will also cover the best way to care for an MTBI if you think you are suffering from one.
How do you get a mild traumatic brain injury? It actually can happen quite easily. Anytime you hit your head, are struck by an external force on the head, or even if you are violently jarred, you can get an MTBI. If you are in a car accident or any type of accident where you are hit and your body is impacted, a mild brain injury can occur.
A mild traumatic brain injury is generally not life-threatening, and this is where they get the term “mild” attached to them. However, this does not indicate that the injuries are not serious. In fact, an MTBI can easily cause a host of other serious, debilitating conditions if it is not properly cared for. Some people tend to ignore the symptoms and try to continue living with them. As years pass by, certain health conditions may arise and may cause you to wonder what brought them about. It is very likely the mild traumatic brain injury is to blame. This is the very reason why it is so important to seek professional help as soon as possible after enduring any kind of injury.
Dr. Adam Aron, a neuroscientist from the University of San Diego in California, has done in-depth research on the mechanics of mild traumatic brain and cervical spine injuries. He discovered there are sharp ridges on the inside of the skull that negatively impact the brain when a mild traumatic brain injury ensues. This causes the brain to bruise in the areas where it hits against these sharp ridges. This means that if the part of the brain that controls movement, emotions, or behavior is damaged, certain health problems are soon to follow. This not only explains movement control, but also self-control and control functions and how these relate to neuropsychiatric conditions such as Tourette’s syndrome, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and stuttering.
Symptoms Indicating a Possible Mild Traumatic Brain Injury
The following are symptoms you can keep an eye out for if you think you or someone you know has suffered a mild traumatic brain injury:
- Abnormal headaches or migraines
- Dizziness or loss of balance
- Depression and anxiety
- Visual disturbances
- Memory problems
- Problems concentrating or focusing
- Sleep disturbances
- Slowing down in thinking ability
- Feeling confused or easily getting lost
- Sensitivity to sound and light
- Mood swings
It is important to remember these symptoms may not appear immediately after the injury. It is possible that they will not show up for days or even weeks. They are also mild symptoms, which can easily be overlooked by the person, the family members, or even a doctor. If you appear to be your normal self except for thinking a little slower or feeling off, no one is going to suspect you are suffering from a mild traumatic brain injury. This makes it easy to misdiagnose the real problem. In fact, the thing that often causes the person to seek medical attention is when they are unable to perform routine daily tasks.
Caring for a Mild Traumatic Brain Injury
In addition to the bruising that goes on in the brain, another problem may occur when one gets a mild traumatic brain injury. A misalignment often occurs in the top bones of the spine. If either the C1 (atlas) or C2 (axis) move out of their original position, they can put the brainstem under pressure. The brainstem is the communication highway of the body. If it malfunctions and begins sending improper signals to the brain about what is happening in the body, a number of serious problems can follow. Blood flow and cerebrospinal fluid flow can also be hindered. All of this can include behavioral and emotional issues as well. This is something that is often overlooked and can continue for many years until to problem is resolved. Thankfully, there is help available.
Upper cervical chiropractors have had much success in helping patients with mild traumatic brain injuries to restore their health and well-being. We have done extensive training on how a misalignment in the bones of the neck impact particular parts of the body and how this can lead to major health issues later on. Here at Providence Chiropractic in Edmonton, Alberta, we focus on the above-mentioned vertebrae to make sure they are in proper alignment. If not, we use a gentle method that does not require us to pop or crack the neck or spine to get lasting, positive results. We encourage the bones of the neck to move back into place on their own, not adding further stress to the body.
Once this misalignment is corrected, the body is then able to allow its healing properties to take over and begin repairing the damage that has been inflicted. Communication between the brain and the body is restored, and proper blood flow can reach the brain. This is often all that is needed for one to start seeing relief from the symptoms of a mild traumatic brain injury.