Concussions/Traumatic Brain Injury/Brain Fog
When someone has a concussion, TBI, or brain fog as the result of some other medical condition, they may experience a variety of symptoms and conditions that we as audiologists can help to evaluate and treat. If you believe you have recently experienced a concussion or traumatic brain injury (TBI) or other brain-related event, it is important to see a physician immediately for diagnosis and treatment. In the aftermath, if you are experiencing any of the issues below, we can be of assistance.
Auditory Processing Difficulties
Processing the sounds around us actually requires a significant amount of cognitive resources – our ears only pick up sound and send it to the brain, and it is our brain’s job to make sense of what we are hearing. One of the most complex processing tasks our brain’s do is digesting speech and so if you experience any of the following, an auditory processing evaluation is warranted:
- Difficulty understanding rapid speech
- Difficulty understanding speech in the presence of competing noise
- Difficulty remembering information you have heard or been told.
- Fatigue from listening to speech.
If auditory processing deficits are identified, we have a variety of treatments that we use successfully with our patients.
Tinnitus is the subjective perception of a ringing, buzzing, roaring, or even cricket-like sounds (no two people describe it exactly the same). Tinnitus can arise from even a subtle change to your hearing, from a change to your cognitive function, or from the side effects of medications and it is important to determine the cause. Once it’s cause has been determined and if a person’s tinnitus is distracting, our audiologists have a variety of tools and treatments to help reduce the distraction.
Hyperacusis is a condition characterized by heightened sensitivity to everyday sounds, causing discomfort, pain, or anxiety. People who have experienced a concussion, TBI, “brain fog”, or some other event may experience hyperacusis because their auditory processing has been affected (see above). Similar to tinnitus, each person’s experience with hyperacusis is often at least somewhat unique and the tools and treatments we can utilize are dependent upon the cause of the hyperacusis and that person’s experiences with it.
Our balance system incorporates information from our ears, our eyes, and our limbs and is integrated in the brain. A head injury can affect the ears and eyes themselves, or it can affect the way the brain integrates information from those senses. Our audiologists have the ability to determine if the eyes, ears, or brain are causing a person’s dizziness and then create a plan to address the issue.
If any of these issues are affecting your quality of life, we can help!