When brain injury hits home

Because my research has focused on the neuroscience of rehabilitation for several decades, I have received hundreds of email messages, letters and telephone calls from parents and grand-parents desperately seeking help for their brain-damaged or developmentally-impaired child or grand-child. Because the losses suffered from brain injury and developmental disabilities expressed in this correspondence is usually…

Important update on risk factors contributing to PTSD onset!

In our last entry on this subject, we summarized risk factors for PTSD onset as follows: “You just DON’T want to be a) an ambidextrous b) Latino c) who has a history of cognitive or learning impairment and d) who suffers additional diffuse or localized brain trauma e) in parallel with an exposure to f)…

Therapeutically reliving and elaborating your traumatic experiences CAN be harmful

In the June 18th, 2007 issue of Newsweek, Sharon Begley wrote an opinion column that must have raised a few hackles in the psychotherapy community. In her words, “…(for) patients seeking psychotherapy….talking can be dangerous … and therapists have not exactly rushed to tell them so.” One well-documented class of examples has come from “stress…

Brain fitness training: measuring psycho-social dimensions of brain health

Dr. William Bailey’s comments about a study that he and his colleague Jean Turner are conducting on the impacts of BrainHQ training on symptoms of depression, self-efficacy and related psycho-social dimensions in older individuals is worth special mention. We welcome these two University of Arkansas scientists into our community, and look forward to their study…

Two additional risk factors for PTSD (one surprising; one mundane)

Being ambidextrous is pretty useful as a member of your Little League team, but it turns out to be not quite so positive if your brain is later faced with traumatic experiences. Rather surprisingly, a study of 2,490 individuals exposed to combat in Vietnam revealed that an ambidextrous individual is about twice as likely to…

Why not fix it BEFORE it breaks?

An article in the New York Times published about two weeks ago mirrored by an article in the AARP Bulletin bumptiously extolled the wonderful energies in the pharmaceutical industry directed toward medical strategies for more effectively treating or ‘curing’ Alzheimers Disease. The NYT science writer focussed on Wyeth Laboratories, because they are putting down most…

Racing through life!

Race car driving was the last thing Marilyn Kays expected to be doing at the age of 63. Her late husband called her ‘grandma’ because of her pokey driving. After completing BrainHQ, where she made great individual progress, Marilyn felt more confident than ever before. She noticed that she remembered things like her bank account…

How can we help our brain-traumatized soldiers and vets? Nancy raises a ‘call for ACTION’.

Nancy Martin-Crisco wrote a heart-rending response to a blog I posted  (“How to get PTSD. Twice. Worse.”) that you all should read. Her son Christopher was diagnosed with PTSD after service in Afghanistan. After a few months stateside, he was redeployed to Baghdad. It was NOT good for him. Addiction, divorce, separation from his child,…

A brain fitness graduate comes home

A couple of weeks ago, Jerry Emmons shared his story with Posit Science. It seems that the 84-year-old was spending much of each day re-living old, painful World War II memories. He had been the only survivor in his crew and the horror was haunting him more and more. “Post-traumatic stress disorder,” said his doctor.…