Monday, April 2, 2012

Speaking Through the Fog

A rotating animation of the human brain showin...
A rotating animation of the human brain showing the left frontal lobe in red within a semitransparent skull. The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) is sometimes also included in the frontal lobe. Other authors include the ACC as a part of limbic lobe. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Another aspect of my life that I have noticed a change in is my ability to articulate words in a meaningful manner when I try to speak. If I have ample time, or the ability to write down my thoughts I can organize them better, and I can actually convey the meaning of my thoughts in a coherent manner. The problem is though when I speak plainly, or am asked a question I sometimes have trouble finding the exact words I am looking for. I was never the most verbal individual, but I have found the ability to speak has been greatly effected since the accident. The months directly after the concussion when my symptoms were at their peak was when I noticed the prevalence of this effect. Some instances I would sit there struggling with what word I wanted to say, or the sentences I spoke would be long and drawn out because I was thinking about the words as I spoke. So I recently asked myself this question. Could this be due to the multiple mtbi's I have experienced? My quest for the answer gave me some un-easing answers.
The first article that I looked into was the effects of mild traumatic brain injury on the verbal portion of the adult mind. The conclusion that this article came to was that mtbi has a large effect on linguistic functioning, especially that associated with complex linguistic operations. The main reason that this effect was contributed  to was a dysfunction that occurs in the frontal lobe area of the brain, as well as some other minor areas associated with speech. The next article that I read dealt with this very subject, but the effects that it can have on children. Now their conclusion was primarily the same. The general linguistic skills were not effected in children, they attributed this to a child's ability to recovery from mtbi more rapidly than that of an adult. What they did find though was that as the child develops and comes into that more complex way of speaking in a delayed manner. The mtbi that they sustain effects their complex linguistic functioning in a negative manner.
So I have my answer, and I can say that some of my speaking problems may in fact be rooted in the multiple mtbi I have sustained, but their is no true way of determining this. I have almost fully recovered though, it just takes time. If their is anyone out their reading this with similar problems, it just takes time to heal. Their is hope, you just have to keep moving forward!
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