What is a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)?

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) results from an external blow to the head. These external blows may result from motor vehicle accidents (MVA), assaults, falls, and sport injuries.

What communication difficulties result from a TBI?

Cognitive-Communication difficulties are communication impairments that may result from a TBI. They are commonly associated with traumatic brain injury (TBI), but can also occur as a result of other acquired brain injuries (ABI), such as hemorrhages, stroke, meningitis, encephalitis, anoxia, or tumors.

These communication impairments can results in difficulties with listening, speaking, reading, writing, conversation and social interaction that result from underlying cognitive impairments (Attention, Memory, Organization, Information processing, Problem Solving, and Executive functions).

Therefore some Cognitive-Communication difficulties that individuals complain of include:

  • Difficulty remembering what they are reading
  • Difficulty organizing their ideas to tell or write a story
  • Difficulty with public speaking at work or school
  • Difficulty explaining your thoughts at work, home or school
  • Difficulty listening to, understanding and remembering people
  • Difficulty setting and achieving goals
  • Difficulty solving problems
  • Difficulty socializing and/or making or keeping friends

How can we help?

If you have a Traumatic Brain Injury and are finding that you are having Cognitive and/or Communication Difficulties, we can help. Intervention at Simone Friedman Speech-Language Services would occur in a systematic order.

  1. An assessment would be done to determine what, if any cognitive-communication difficulties are present.
  2. The data will be analyzed.
  3. All areas of difficulty would be discussed with you and an intervention plan would be developed with you to ensure the goals are specific to you and are meaningful.
  4. Treatment: There are many options for treatment of your cognitive-communication difficulties.
    • We can do treatment one on one in your home, work-place, school etc. to ensure that we approach your difficulties in a context that is meaningful to you. This approach will help to generalize the skills learned, much more quickly than if we had to do it in a context that was not associated with your difficulties. Treatment would focus on your goals, using material that is meaningful to you. For example, if you are having a difficult time cooking because you are struggling to concentrate and attend to a recipe, we may target your attention for reading, and provide you with compensation strategies to help you with this difficulty. If you are a student and are struggling with public speaking, we would work on your presentation skills providing you with many compensation strategies to improve your skills. If you are having a difficult time in social situations and/or you are finding that making or keeping friends is difficult, we may work on your social-communication skills providing you with many compensation strategies to improve you ability to feel success socially. If you are having difficulty getting or keeping a job, we would analyze your job and all its communication requirements. We would then tailor our therapy material to be specific to your job and target your communication goals (e.g., reading, writing, understanding, speaking, verbal reasoning etc) using material relevant to you. Using this technique will teach you how to use the compensation strategies while doing your work. This way, when we leave the picture, you will feel confident using the strategies independently in the environment that is important to you.
    • In addition to providing treatment in the context that is meaningful to you, we also can provide one on one treatment in our beautiful clinic space at: 1232 Dufferin. This would allow you to have a change of environment and practice your executive function skills (get to the clinic, be on time etc). It would also decrease your costs as you would not have to pay for our travel time and/or mileage.
    • One on one treatment in your setting and/or in our clinic is not your only option. We also offer skill-based classes at 1232 Dufferin. By joining a class, you would learn specific skills to compensate for your cognitive-communication difficulties and you would be able to socialize with other people going through a similar difficulty. Please call our clinic to find more about these classes.