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TBI can cause physical, mental and social impairments

The human brain is an extremely powerful organ in our bodies. In fact, it is arguably the most powerful and definitely the most complex. It controls and regulates every other organ in the body and allows all of our different systems to work simultaneously. When the cognitive abilities are considered, it is what separates us from every other animal by allowing us to recognize, interpret and analyze feelings, concepts and more.

The human brain is an extremely powerful organ…but it is also extremely fragile. Any little bit of force in the right spot could alter the way it works forever. A traumatic brain injury can permanently alter our cognitive and decision-making abilities, and this impairment can lead to an entirely different set of complications.

The effect of the physical trauma can cause mood swings, severe behavior shifts, increased aggression, lessen our motivation, make it extremely difficult to concentrate and even change the personality traits and quirks that makes us, well, us. It is these extra effects that researchers suggest likely lead to a shocking statistic determined in a recent study.

The study was published in the journal CMAJ Open in which researchers found what could be a strong link between TBI and homelessness. Researchers found that of the 111 homeless male participants, 45 percent had suffered a TBI during their lifetime.

Trauma and neurosurgery researcher Jane Topolovec-Vranic said that “you could see how it would happen.” She described the possible downward spiral from the physical trauma to the intellectual effects and the life-altering consequences, often starting with the loss of a job and unemployment.

Social Security disability benefits help individuals in North Carolina with an intellectual impairment that prevents them from earning a livable income. The benefits allow the individual to get the medical care that they need and pay for other necessary expenses.

Source: TIME, “Almost Half of Homeless Men Had a Previous Brain Injury,” Bryan Walsh, April 26, 2014

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