Collin Christopherson is an advocate for the healing process faced by veterans who have encountered the harsh realities of TBI. In the following article, Collin Charlie Christopherson unveils strategies and empowering narratives that illuminate the path to TBI recovery. In the face of adversity, Christopherson stands as a testament to the indomitable spirit of veterans, offering a roadmap for resilience that goes beyond survival, guiding towards a future marked by strength, hope, and renewed purpose.
Over 450,000 U.S. military personnel around the globe were diagnosed with Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) between 2000 and 2021, according to the U.S. Department of Defense.
Of this number, 82.3 percent of cases were classified as mild, 10.7 percent were moderate, and 1.0 percent were severe. Moderate and severe cases of TBI were found to be significantly higher among service members exposed to combat, as explosions or impacts from military service were the top causes of the condition.
Collin Charlie Christopherson delves into the latest advancements in TBI recovery for veterans, highlighting rehabilitation programs, technological interventions, and holistic approaches that contribute to their recovery journey.
Collin Christopherson Discusses TBI Among Veterans: A Quick Overview
Military personnel sustain TBI during military training and deployment and through day-to-day activities like participating in recreational events or playing sports. Most cases were mild, and service members who sustained a mild case (also known as a concussion) were advised to rest and minimize activities. They typically return to full duty within 10 to 14 days.
However, Collin Christopherson explains that some don’t realize they have TBI, even when they experience chronic symptoms caused by the condition. This is common among veterans, as TBI can have invisible injuries.
A study found that veterans and service members who have sustained traumatic brain injury may experience the following:
- Ongoing symptoms
- Co-occurring mental health issues like depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Difficulty accessing mental health services and healthcare in general
- Thinking or planning suicide
Collin Charlie Christopherson notes that TBI, particularly moderate and severe cases cause short- or long-term cognitive or behavioral risks. Severe TBI increases the risk of being in a coma or vegetative state. TBI can have significant effects on a veteran’s physical and mental health, therefore the recovery process is crucial.
Strategies for Recovery
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs offers Polytrauma/TBI System of Care, a network of specialized rehabilitation programs designed for caring for and treating veterans and service members with TBI, caused by either combat or civilian-related reasons.
Some services offered by the PCS include:
- Interdisciplinary evaluation and treatment
- Development of a comprehensive care plan
- Case management
- Patient and family training and education
- Psychosocial support
- Application of advanced rehabilitation treatments
Another treatment center that offers rehabilitation programs for veterans with TBI is the Marcus Institute for Brain Health, located at the University of Colorado. The center offers specialty care for military veterans who are struggling with mild to moderate TBI and changes in psychological health through traditional rehabilitation with complementary medicines.
Researchers from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs are constantly looking into ways to improve the lives of veterans who sustained traumatic brain injury.
One of their projects is the Smart Home, which is described as a “cognitive prosthetic”. Collin Christopherson says that the Smart Home uses advanced technology designed to assist veterans and service members who have TBI with independence, including planning, organizing, and completing daily tasks such as taking out the trash or doing laundry.
Collin Charlie Christopherson says that another technological intervention being used to diagnose and treat TBI in veterans is virtual reality (VR). One example is REACT Neuro, which is a new virtual reality eye-tracking solution. The tool was initially used to diagnose the condition, but clinicians found that it is able to accurately and objectively measure improvement of the condition in patients over time.
The National Intrepid Center for Excellence (NICoE) is a facility in Maryland that provides assistance to veterans and their families manage TBI and psychological health using a holistic approach.
The NICoE center offers diagnostic evaluation, individualized treatment planning, clinical care, and, research. They also offer a month-long outpatient care program.
Another program that offers a holistic approach to treatment for TBI is The Intrepid Spirit Program, an intensive 6-week outpatient program that offers holistic state-of-the-art treatment and educational programs.
Included in the program are life skill techniques, readiness strategies, and resources for continued healing after the program.
Traumatic brain injury affects thousands of veterans and military service members every year. The condition may result in both short and long-term physical and mental effects which require care and a lengthy recovery process.
Collin Charlie Christopherson explains that with support from the government and the available treatment options today, veterans have a better chance of recovering completely from TBI.