March is National Brain Injury Awareness Month
March is designated as National Brain Injury Awareness Month. According to the Brain Injury Association of America, 1.4 million people in the United States sustain a brain injury every year. Every 23 seconds, one person in the United States sustains a brain injury. Defined as a jolt or blow to the head or a penetrating wound that disrupts brain function, researchers believe that traumatic brain injury increases the risk for development of other diseases, including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease. Not all jolts or blows to the head can lead to traumatic brain injury.
The incidence of traumatic brain injury is greater than the incidences of breast cancer, spinal cord injuries, Multiple Sclerosis and HIV/AIDS combined. It is estimated that falls account for 28% of traumatic brain injuries and motor vehicle accidents account for 20% of the injuries. The severity of a traumatic brain injury can vary from mild to severe. In 1995, it was estimated that in the United States, traumatic brain injury costs were $56.3 billion. This figure represents medical costs as well as indirect costs such as lost productivity.
Caring for someone with a brain injury represents unique challenges. However, there are many local organizations that are dedicated to helping survivors and caregivers of traumatic brain injury. The following is a listing of resources in the greater Sacramento region. We encourage you to contact the organizations for assistance and support.