Understanding and Treating Service-Related TBI

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Objective: Provide specific information for those diagnosed with TBI, how the military culture is affected by TBI. Preventative measures and recovery information about TBI

Resources/Influencers: http://dvbic.dcoe.mil/

Time to read: 1 minute

Traumatic Brain Injury is a health issue affecting many service members, veterans, and their families during war and peace times. The high rate of TBI and concussions resulting from current combat operations directly impacts the health and safety of individual service members.

In the VA, TBI is a big focus. Veterans can sustain TBI from deployment, throughout their lives. As veterans age, they are at a higher risk of sustaining TBI from falls. Service members are at increased risk for TBI, when compared to their civilian peers. This is a factor of their demographics and the operational and training activities, which are physically demanding and potentially dangerous. Service members are deployed to areas where they’re at higher risk for exposure to blasts from IEDs, suicide bombers, land mines, mortar rounds, and rocket-propelled grenades, all increasing the risk for sustaining a TBI. In addition to deployment, physical training is part of the active duty service members everyday life. Activities during training can also increase risk for TBI.

It can be difficult to determine if service members and veterans need treatment for several reasons. During active duty, service members often deny symptoms of physical injury in an effort to support their mission. Some service members are simply used to their daily routine and don’t recognize they need assistance until they return home.

If you know a veteran returning from service who may be experiencing the effects of a TBI, let them know about the resources and community available to them:http://dvbic.dcoe.mil/national-resources

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