Head injuries are associated with a wide range of physical effects, some of which may last a lifetime. Severe head injuries are also associated with serious emotional effects, and these can be extremely upsetting for friends and family of the person suffering from a brain injury. MSKTC.com explains how damage to your brain can have an impact on your emotions.
While some level of anxiety is relatively normal depending on the circumstances, people who suffer from anxiety disorders are anxious for no verifiable reason. This happens with head injuries quite a bit, and a person may experience chronic anxiety or even panic attacks, which are bouts of extreme fear that can sometimes come out of nowhere. Changes to the brain can be hard to adjust to, and this adjustment can lead to anxiety problems, especially when abilities are significantly limited. Making changes to one’s life, getting assistance with difficult tasks, and speaking with a therapist are all recommended when suffering from anxiety.
Mood swings can also occur. This entails erratic changes in one’s feelings that may not be predicated on the person’s actual emotions. Mood swings may happen because of damage caused to a specific part of the brain, or it can result out of frustration about a person’s injuries. While this complication often improves after a few months, for some people it remains an issue. Along with counseling, mood stabilizers can help keep regulate wildly fluctuating emotions.
Anger issues are common with brain injuries. This is often expressed via outbursts or excessive irritability, which may be triggered by seemingly insignificant happenings. Anger often stems from frustration about the situation, but can also be caused by damage to a certain part of the brain. Family can help in this instance by providing feedback when outbursts occur and redirecting your loved one’s attention when issues arise. Learning anger management skills is also useful.