‘Do you find you have the attention span of a dyslexic gnat?’

‘Do you find you have the attention span of a dyslexic gnat?’ asked the consultant as she crossed the room to wash her hands.

I paused to consider, amused by the comic image this conjured up in my mind, and, lost in my reflections forgot to answer. The consultant had returned to her desk and looked up at me from her notes, pen poised, and I emerged from my brief daydream.

‘Umm, it’s getting better…slowly’

She went on to detail some of the side effects that often result from head injuries, from physical, to emotional and cognitive changes. It seems strange that a month after the accident, this was the first time that anyone had spent time explaining the consequences and long-term impact of a head injury to me. The focus of the orthopaedic team had, understandably, been on fixing my broken bones back into place and helping me to regain enough mobility to be able to perform basic everyday tasks.

Yet now, a different focus has helped make sense of different things that have seemed otherwise bizarre or disconcerting during my recovery. From blinding headaches to extreme fatigue, and odd irrational reactions or phobias, these began to fall into place with the help of reassuring explanations from my consultant.

It has made me realise how much any event such as this can interrupt lifestyles, thoughts and experiences with long-term consequences. Life is different as a result, not just for me, but family and friends too.

Please forgive me this somewhat self-indulgent section… apparently self-centredness is a side effect of a head injury.

For more information about head/brain injury see www.headway.org.uk

Published in: on September 15, 2009 at 6:00 pm  Leave a Comment  

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