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Brain Injury and Heart Attack: How are They Related?

Brain injury is one of the main contributors to the huge number of disabilities and deaths in the United States every year. Depending on the severity, some patients take years to fully recover. In order to recover well from brain trauma, patients have to undergo different kinds of therapy from the best brain injury rehabilitation centers.

Neulife is a rehabilitation facility that offers a comprehensive program tailored to the personal needs of each client. Learn more about their rehabilitation services in this article.

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Brain injury in numbers

Brain injury occurs when there is damage to the brain that causes temporary or permanent cognitive, psychosocial, or physical impairment. It has two general types: traumatic and non-traumatic.

Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that there were 2.87 million incidents of traumatic brain injury in 2014. A staggering 837,000 of these cases happened in children. These numbers continue to climb every year.

On the other hand, stroke, which is one of the most common non-traumatic injuries, affects 7.8 million people. This is 3.1% of the country’s adult population.

Heart attacks in numbers

A heart attack, also known as myocardial infarction, happens when a part of the heart is not receiving enough blood flow. The longer the heart is deprived of blood and oxygen, the greater the damage to the myocardium (heart muscle). Once damaged, the heart will be inefficient in pumping out blood.

One American suffers a heart attack every 40 seconds, according to the CDC. In fact, there are approximately 790,000 cases of heart attacks in the United States every year.

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Brain Injury and Heart Attacks: How are They Related?

A heart attack is one of the non-traumatic causes of brain injury mentioned in our article. This means that a person having a heart attack can also suffer from a stroke and brain injury

According to Harvard Health, the risk factors for strokes and heart attacks are almost identical. These include obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, cigarette smoking, diabetes, and a sedentary lifestyle

As mentioned previously, a heart attack happens when there is a blockage in an artery that supplies blood to the myocardium. Because of this, the blood flow to the heart is cut off, resulting in tissue damage, tissue death, and altered electrical conduction. When these happen, the heart will no longer be efficient in pumping blood throughout the body

Poor blood supply is the formula for tissue damage. This includes kidney damage and brain damage. Likewise, without the pumping movement of the heart, the blood in the blood vessels would no longer flow and will start to stagnate. In people with high cholesterol levels and diabetes, this can make the blood viscous, leading to the formation of blood clots. When these clots form, they block the artery that supplies blood to the brain tissues, which can result in an ischemic stroke

Doctors measure the stroke risk of a heart attack patient using the CHADS-VASc assessment. If the patient belongs in risk categories 1 and 2, the patient will be given appropriate pharmacologic therapies to prevent a stroke.

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Want to learn more about NeuLife brain injury rehab center?

NeuLife is a Residential Post-Acute Rehab facility specializing in brain injury rehabilitation. As one of the best brain injury rehabilitation centers in Florida, its program includes physical medicine and rehabilitation medical management, psychiatric and neuropsychological services, physical, occupational, speech, and cognitive therapies, behavioral, dietary and vocational counseling, and more. Beautifully situated on 43 acres in Mount Dora, Florida, its inpatient rehab facility comprises over 60,000 square feet and contains 54 private rooms or suites. If you would like more information about NeuLife Rehabilitation Services, please contact us.

The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment.  Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

Neuroplasticity: Movement is a Medicine

Not long ago, it was believed that our brains were incapable of change throughout our entire lifespan. It was thought that our brain’s structure and development was mostly permanent following infancy and childhood. Decades of research have revolutionized our comprehension of the human brain, allowing for better recovery outcomes for patients with neurological injuries.

Our central nervous system (CNS) is comprised of our brain and spinal cord. After injuries to our CNS, such as a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and Spinal Cord Injury (SCI), we now incorporate principles of neuroplasticity as a key to recovery.
What is neuroplasticity?

Neuroplasticity is the ability of our brain and spinal cord to continuously rewire new neuron pathways to enhance motor learning following an injury. Our brain is the command center of our body, and neurons are different cells which specialize in communicating feedback from your body to your mind. Our brains have the capacity to form new neural circuits in response to ongoing activity. These connections are constantly becoming stronger or weaker in response to stimulation, learning, and experience. Our brain’s flexibility for change allow for new networks to enhance our movement and regain functional independence. “Neuroplasticity is also the mechanism by which damaged brain relearns lost behavior in response to rehabilitation” – Kleim & Jones 2008. We now understand our brains ability to adapt and change can occur at any stage of life.
How can Neulife Rehab support neuroplasticity?

Our model of care is based on patient-centered focus. Intensive, focused rehabilitation helps restore function and maximize feedback/feedforward mechanisms to promote long term memory. Research shows the earlier the care, the better the outcome. Neuroplasticity is best targeted by intense repetitious training that challenges the body appropriately. Our skilled therapists focus not only on repetition, but properly dosing activity to the skill level of our clients. Our rehabilitation services help drive CNS reorganization through task specific interventions. Movement is a medicine because continuous practice enhances our brains ability to relearn patterns and form new pathways to return to independence.

Variables that influence neuroplasticity:
• Aerobic exercise and resistance training: improve brain health, increase speed and signaling, improve spatial learning, and decreased DNA damage
• Intensity: frequency, duration, and difficulty
• Repetition
• Use it or lose it: failure to influence movement can lead to functional decline
• Mood: mental health plays a vital role because stress, depression, and fear can negatively influence recovery
• Experience (Activity)
• Age: young brains are more plastic to change
• Sleep
• Hormones
• Cardiorespiratory function
• Pharmaceuticals
• Disease

Dance Your Way to Mobility! (New Research in the Field of Post Acute Rehabilitation Following TBI)

What is Dance Rehabilitation?

Dance rehabilitation is a form of physical therapy with a strong focus on dance-specific movements. The rehabilitation process can address both new and old injuries with exercises and activities intentionally aimed at aiding the recovery.

Dance Rehabilitation can actually help people walk and balance better. The ultimate goal is to help better design and prescribe rehabilitation to those with reduced mobility.

The Newest Research

In the article “Individualized goal-directed dance rehabilitation in chronic state of severe traumatic brain injury: A case study”, published in Helyon (Volume 5, Issue 2, February 2019), the authors present a dance intervention six and a half years after an extremely severe TBI.

The intervention was based on the fact that efficient brain functioning depends on the integrated operation of large-scale brain networks. It used a multisensory and multimodal approach and goal-directed behavior.  It lasted four months, including weekly one-hour dance lessons with the help of a physiotherapist and a dance teacher. 

The main assumption was that the process of recovery might still be accelerated during the post-acute rehabilitation process, even after a long and successful period of intensive multidisciplinary rehabilitation. The individually tailored intervention was based on the dance and music material created by the patient himself before the accident.

Several studies have demonstrated that music- and rhythm-based interventions have positive effects on treating and rehabilitating neurological conditions in post-acute rehabilitation.

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Great results

The goal-directed dance rehabilitation intervention was tailored according to the needs and strengths of the rehabilitee. The 20-week intervention included a weekly 60-minute dance lesson. The results of the intervention were very promising. They were assessed by various healthcare professionals:

  • According to the physiotherapist and the dance teacher, rehabilitee’s balance, posture, mobility, and endurance got better. Procedural and episodic memory improved as well.
  • According to the practical nurse, the rehabilitee was feeling more secure, independent and self-controlled. Executive functions got faster, alertness level and concentration were much better. Working and long-term memory, as well as motor functions, improved.
  • According to the neuropsychologist, the rehabilitee’s self-awareness, self-reflection, alertness level, attention and coping, as well as episodic and working memory were improved.
  • The neurologist’s assessment concluded that at the end of the 20 weeks, the rehabilitee acted self-intentionally, his functions were still slow, but faster, stimulus-dependency was diminished and he controlled his left upper limbs better and worked bi-manually more.

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Conclusions

According to the article, by providing emotionally-charged, memory-retrieving multisensory information (dancing and music) to the multimodal brain regions through repeated rehearsal, it may be possible to restore, or strengthen the connections within and between various brain areas more efficiently.

Another positive conclusion is that the memory system might be activated during dance rehabilitation during the post acute rehabilitation phase of TBI, by allowing several pre-injury learned components into the process.

The article gives us hope, introducing yet another component into post-acute rehabilitation of those suffering from TBI, or other neurological disorders.

Post Acute Rehab in Florida

NeuLife Rehabilitation is one of the largest residential post-acute rehabilitation facilities in the Southeast with specialized catastrophic rehabilitation programs for a wide range of catastrophic injuries.

Our programs for Post Acute Rehab in Florida are customized to meet the individual needs of each patient, and care plans are structured to promote the highest level of functional independence and successful community reintegration. With the skills and experience of our highly trained team of clinical experts, we are able to treat a wide range of diagnoses and injuries at our brain injury facility.

If you have any more questions concerning dance rehabilitation, Post Acute Rehab in Florida, or any other issue regarding brain injury, call us to make an appointment today. You can also schedule a tour to visit our brain injury facility.

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The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

Brain Injury and Heart Attack: How are They Related?

Brain injury is one of the main contributors to the huge number of disabilities and deaths in the United States every year. Depending on the severity, some patients take years to fully recover. In order to recover well from brain trauma, patients have to undergo different kinds of therapy from the best brain injury rehabilitation centers

Neulife is a rehabilitation facility that offers a comprehensive program tailored to the personal needs of each client. Learn more about their rehabilitation services in this article.

Brain injury in numbers

Brain injury occurs when there is damage to the brain that causes temporary or permanent cognitive, psychosocial, or physical impairment. It has two general types: traumatic and non-traumatic

Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that there were 2.87 million incidents of traumatic brain injury in 2014. A staggering 837,000 of these cases happened in children. These numbers continue to climb every year.

On the other hand, stroke, which is one of the most common non-traumatic injuries, affects 7.8 million people. This is 3.1% of the country’s adult population

Heart attacks in numbers

A heart attack, also known as myocardial infarction, happens when a part of the heart is not receiving enough blood flow. The longer the heart is deprived of blood and oxygen, the greater the damage to the myocardium (heart muscle). Once damaged, the heart will be inefficient in pumping out blood.

One American suffers a heart attack every 40 seconds, according to the CDC. In fact, there are approximately 790,000 cases of heart attacks in the United States every year.

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Brain Injury and Heart Attacks: How are They Related?

A heart attack is one of the non-traumatic causes of brain injury mentioned in our article. This means that a person having a heart attack can also suffer from a stroke and brain injury.

According to Harvard Health, the risk factors for strokes and heart attacks are almost identical. These include obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, cigarette smoking, diabetes, and a sedentary lifestyle.

As mentioned previously, a heart attack happens when there is a blockage in an artery that supplies blood to the myocardium. Because of this, the blood flow to the heart is cut off, resulting in tissue damage, tissue death, and altered electrical conduction. When these happen, the heart will no longer be efficient in pumping blood throughout the body.

Poor blood supply is the formula for tissue damage. This includes kidney damage and brain damage. Likewise, without the pumping movement of the heart, the blood in the blood vessels would no longer flow and will start to stagnate. In people with high cholesterol levels and diabetes, this can make the blood viscous, leading to the formation of blood clots. When these clots form, they block the artery that supplies blood to the brain tissues, which can result in an ischemic stroke.

Doctors measure the stroke risk of a heart attack patient using the CHADS-VASc assessment. If the patient belongs in risk categories 1 and 2, the patient will be given appropriate pharmacologic therapies to prevent a stroke.

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Want to learn more about NeuLife brain injury rehab center?

NeuLife is a Residential Post-Acute Rehab facility specializing in brain injury rehabilitation. As one of the best brain injury rehabilitation centers in Florida, its program includes physical medicine and rehabilitation medical management, psychiatric and neuropsychological services, physical, occupational, speech, and cognitive therapies, behavioral, dietary and vocational counseling, and more. Beautifully situated on 43 acres in Mount Dora, Florida, its inpatient rehab facility comprises over 60,000 square feet and contains 54 private rooms or suites. If you would like more information about NeuLife Rehabilitation Services, please contact us.

The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment.  Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

Parkinson’s disease, how can Neulife assist you?

Parkinson’s disease is currently classified as the second most common degenerative brain disorder affecting 7 to 10 million people worldwide.  Within the United States, Parkinson’s affects 1 million Americans. Parkinson’s disease is primarily related to a disturbance in dopamine within the brain. Dopamine is a brain chemical that affects controlled movement, sleep, ability to learn and retain information, mood, attention, and decision making.

Parkinson’s disease includes four cardinal signs and symptoms. Resting tremor is typically seen, which is a shaking or oscillating movement.  Next bradykinesia, which is a slowness of movement.  Rigidity is an increase in resistance to passive motion and feeling stiff. And lastly, postural instability which manifests in several ways affecting balance, coordination, and individuals may demonstrate a shuffling walking pattern.

Neulife Rehab empowers clients to manage, control, and progress toward their goals through fun and novel interventions by certified therapists in all disciplines including: physical therapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy, and mental health. Studies show results are better when treatment is started early. Our holistic treatment approach through physical, dietary, and mental wellbeing assist in enhancing our clients to reach their maximal potential.

Two of our clinicians are certified in the leading evidence-based intervention for Parkinson’s disease called LSVT-BIG for physical therapy treatment, and LSVT-LOUD for speech therapy.  Exercising will improve muscle strength, flexibility, and coordination/balance, as well as reduce anxiety/depression. We emphasize motor learning, sensory-motor integration, and agility. LSVT-BIG is based on the concept of repetitive high amplitude movement to improve our clients’ performance and safety with functional mobility.

Our personalized plan of care work on our clients’ specific needs, regardless of the stage of their condition. LSVT-LOUD is customized to recalibrate a client’s perception of speech to improve their voice and communication. Speech therapy will also provide strategies to enhance memory and cognitive reasoning.

Activities of daily living (ADL) including: dressing, bathing, eating, or writing may be difficult for individuals with Parkinson’s disease. Our occupational therapy services will teach techniques to make ADLs more manageable. Our occupational therapists may suggest adaptations and modifications to advance accessibly, thus increasing client independence.

We hope to put this important topic in the spotlight this month, and bring awareness to a neurological disease that affects so many.