Traumatic Brain Injury and Post Concussion Syndrome For traumatic brain injury (TBI) and post concussion syndrome (PCS).


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Old 06-06-2020, 01:02 AM #1
qtipsq qtipsq is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2014
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8 yr Member
qtipsq qtipsq is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 88
8 yr Member
Default Full Recovery after Three Years

I was a long time lurker when my injury happened in 2014. It took me two years to get some sense of normalcy and three years to say that I was fully recovered.

The last remaining symptom that didn't go aways was the ringing in my ears, the tinnitus however went down a lot. I had a friend ask me for help recently cause she was going through her own concussion recovery and I finally had the ability to compile a list to help her, I hope this can help people on here.

Concussion Journey


My concussion happened in 2014, I tripped and fell off some stairs and hit my head. I did many things to recover, I was completely disabled by my concussion and it felt like my life was over after it had happened. I will go through and give you details on how to recover and what I personally think is happening in the brain.

My symptoms

Extreme Brain Fog
Headache like a hammer every day
Complete loss of Sound sensitivity, couldn’t handle any noises.
Extreme Screen Sensitivity ( couldn’t watch screens, my eyes got messed up)
Double Vision ( couldn’t read)
Complete loss of Balance: (If I closed my eyes I would fall down)
Extreme Anxiety
Extreme Fatigue (had to sleep for hours on end)
Extreme Fear
Uncontrollable Crying
Extra Loud Ringing in the Ears

Some professional things I tried.

At first I went to all the doctors, Neurologist, Neuropsychologist. They did MRI scans and CT scans and told me, that nothing was wrong. If I haven’t gotten better in 6 months, I will not get better. After a year of being impaired I started looking for my own options.


Some out of the box therapies I tried.

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT): I did 60 sessions of HBOT, I moved to an Airbnb in Boulder, Colorado for three months and did two months of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy, which essentially a therapy in which they put you in a pressurized chamber and then flood your body full of oxygen. This I thought would heal me but honestly I couldn’t tell specific results. IT was expensive about $6000 and I had to pay rent and food at the airbnb.


Cognitive FX
A brain clinic in Utah, they did a two week intensive with my brain. They started with an FMRI scan, where they scanned my brain and told me exactly how bad my concussion was. This was the first time, I had a clinician tell me that something was actually wrong. FMRI is the only type of scan that can actually measure the injury. They told me on a Scale of 1-500, my concussion was a 470, base on blood levels in the brain according to the FMRI.

Then they did a 10 day intensive with therapies, eye exercises, and brain puzzles. It was super intense and after wards I felt a small change. A lot of my symptoms were still present, but it showed me that I could push myself.

It was expensive though, they charged me $10,000


Holistic Approaches that definitely work: They are being used by the Army to fix their combat veterans. Youtube became my savior.

Yoga Nidra

Amrit Yoga Institute

I have done this meditation over a 1000 times. It really helped me calm the brain. This is the best institute on Youtube for this practice. There are shorter Nidras, but Nidra is your friend, it really heals the brain.

I AM Yoga Nidra: A Guided Meditation Experience Led by Liam Gillen - YouTube


Five Parks Yoga

I started with 10 minutes yoga every day from this channel, its the best in my opinion, and then moved it up slowly to full classes. I think a 20 minute yoga session followed by a yoga Nidra, really helped my brain. I did yoga sessions every day followed by a yoga nidra.
YouTube

Feldenkrais

Feldenkrais is a body awareness therapy like Yoga Nida, if you can find a Feldenkrais class locally, it really is an amazing therapy to work on body awareness and rewiring the brain. If you can find classes in the future, I highly recommend trying it and making it a daily practice.

Feldenkrais for the neck: Improving Your Neck - YouTube
Feldenkrais for eyes: Seeing Clearly: A Feldenkrais Exploration of Vision by David Webber on Spotify
If you are having eye problems, this will do wonders.

Wim Hoff Method

Breathing technique to boost brain and immune systems. There is a free app you can download. Or you could use this. This is a powerful method, I recommend researching it but it ups the oxygen in your body and really fights the inflammations .

Guided Wim Hof Method Breathing - YouTube

Walking

I walked a lot, I started walking on the beach. When I would get tired, I would do Yoga Nidra and then continue walking. Walking and meditation had a huge impact. I eventually started walking five miles everyday, I would listen to an audiobook and walk.



Audiobooks and Multitasking

After I starting getting better, I started pushing my brain. I would listen to audiobook and then paint. Or go on a walk and listen to the Audiobook. I also played lots of Chess.


Balance Work

A lot of brain injuries create balance problems, so I would randomly stand on one leg 🦵 and close my eyes. I also learned how to juggle, I got into slack-lining, which I know is an extreme but I would walk a slackfline with help. Now I can juggle and walk a slackfline. crazy, when the injury started I would fall down, if I closed my eyes.


Diet

I started with all the vitamins and such but none of that helped. In the end I stopped taking vitamins and shifted to smoothies and started following a diet called

The Wahls Protocol:
https://terrywahls.com/about-the-wahls-protocol/


Organic Smoothies, I had two to three smoothies everyday.
My smoothie recipe is simple

Lots of Kale and Spinach
Banana
Lots of Berries: Usually I would just by an Organic Frozen Berry Medley
Chia Seeds
Water or Coconut Water

Salmon and Fish: I would eat lots of Fish, Rice, Sweet Potatoes and Smoothies

Nuts: I ate lots of walnuts, cashes, pistachios. I always snacked on nuts.


Closing Thoughts

My experience was extremely intense, I moved to California in San Diego for the reason that it has the lowest Barometric pressure change, my main goal to move to San Diego was to heal and it worked.

I had been hurt for a year and a half and nothing was helping. Doctors had given up hope and I had blown all my savings on trying every single crack pot therapy, I only named two but I tried so much stuff….to get better!

I think if you have the funds the Cognitive FX therapy has some value, I still had so many symptoms after that therapy but it really showed me that I could push my limits and they were the first people who kind of had an idea of how to help.

But it was my moving to San Diego, doing Yoga Nidra four to five times a day, with yoga, feldenkrais, wim hoff and walking, and a diet and all the other stuff that got rid of all my symptoms.

I became extremely consistent, I would pretend that I was living the same day over and over again. Drink a smoothie, do yoga Nidra, do yoga session, do wim hoff breathing, do yoga Nidra… go drink another smoothie, go for a walk, do yoga nidra, do yoga, look at the sunset…and so on and so forth. I knew that if I wasn’t gonna get better, I would end up not making it, it do or die for me. So extreme consistency is extremely important to build new brain pathways.

I realized later that its possibly extreme inflammation in the brain, all the breathing and relaxing and yoga and walking ended up getting rid of the inflammation, but It needed extreme work on my end. I would say if you are gonna take my advice, do everything super seriously for 6 months everyday and see if you have a change.

It was an insane journey, I am happy to be away from the injury. I have never put any of this in writing as my injury became a huge source of anxiety for me, but if this can help you in some way, then all of it was for not nothing.

My remaining symptoms is the ringing in the ear (tinnitus) that never completely went away. I also get bouts of extreme anxiety from time to time, something I never had before the injury. But other than that, all my symptoms are gone. I run up mountains now and do rock climbing and the injury is mostly in my past.

Sorry for the long read, I hope it helps. Please ask any questions that you have.
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Old 06-06-2020, 03:09 AM #2
Mark in Idaho Mark in Idaho is offline
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Mark in Idaho Mark in Idaho is offline
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You never say what symptoms were reduced by each these protocols.
You don't mention any objective tests to measure improvements.
You don't mention your tolerance to stressors.

It sounds like your most pressing symptoms were vestibular and vision.

Did you do any vision or vestibular therapy?
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Old 06-06-2020, 11:08 AM #3
Scarlet7 Scarlet7 is offline
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Thank you so much, this is helpful. 3 years in for me and a very long way to go still but some improvements. Have also tried a huge number of things over the past 3 yrs and still am. I will add Nidra from your list, have not done it for years, used to pre-PCS. Great idea. One of the things that provided me with a lifeline has been CBD oil (with very low THC, def dont need more fog!). Should start Wim Hoff again, I tend to take the cold showers, but am not doing the breathing... also not enough consistency in my life since my TBI, my schedule is all over the place, not good, but I am having a hard time changing that (also part of the brain that was affected - organisation). HBOT is also helping, been doing it much more seriously lately -
4.5 hours per week over the past 2 months. Also starting a new brain stimulation program with one of the top Australian brain surgeons soon - which increases neuroplasticity in patients who have had a TBI/stroke/brain surgery...
Walking about 7km daily as well.
Was wondering if you could give me your exact smoothie recipies?
Thank you for your testimony, it gives me hope.


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