Monthly Archives: October 2014

NHL Concussion Lawsuit

H0ckey can be a tough sport.  Players routinely receive concussions from checks, falls and fights.  In fact, many great hockey players have had to retire due to concussions suffered over the course of their careers.  Hall of Famers Pat LaFontaine and Scott Stevens are just two of the better known players who have entered into retirement for this reason.  Sports Illustrated has assembled this gallery featuring some of the best known players whose careers have ended due to damage wrought by concussions.

http://www.si.com/nhl/photos/2013/04/17nhl-careers-ended-by-concussions

Of course, concussion is just another name for a brain injury.  Pat LaFontaine has been particularly active in educating others about brain injuries.  Below is a video on Brainline in which he describes the brain injury ordeals he experienced as a direct result of his career in hockey.

http://www.brainline.org/content/multimedia.php?id=898

A number of retired hockey players are following the example provided by former NFL football players and are seeking legal action against the National Hockey League.  These players have accused the NHL of not doing enough to prevent brain injuries, of not sufficiently informing players of the risk of brain injuries and of even encouraging the fights which can lead to these injuries.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/nhl/2014/10/20/concussion-lawsuit-vs-nhl-filed-in-federal-court/17638661/

If the NHL lawsuit produces results similar to those seen in the NFL lawsuit, the NHL could stand to lose millions of dollars.

Learn about brain injury treatment services at the Transitional Learning Center: tlcrehab.org

 

 

Elections

Voting is a fundamental right for all adult American citizens.  By Federal law, having a disability such as a brain injury does not alter this right in any election.  This includes national, state and local elections.  All election polling locations must be accessible or provide an alternate means for a brain injury survivor to vote.  Moreover, having a brain injury does not stop a survivor from registering to vote if he or she was not registered pre-injury.  For more information, follow this link to the US Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division.

Now go out and vote!

http://www.ada.gov/ada_voting/ada_voting_ta.htm

Learn about brain injury treatment services at the Transitional Learning Center: tlcrehab.org

Post Injury Humor

Many brain injury survivors struggle with humor after their injuries.  Survivors who were quite socially skilled prior to their injuries will often find that they now make jokes which are deemed inappropriate or insulting by others, even though these jokes were made with the best of intentions in mind.  These difficulties tend to be accompanied by social skill or interpersonal relation deficits in other domains.

Following is a list of suggestions to help ensure that jokes are made in appropriate situations and in a proper manner so as to minimize the likelihood of jokes backfiring.

1.    Prior to telling a joke, assess whether or not it’s a good time to tell a joke in the first place. For example, if someone is in a good mood and is smiling then it is probably a good time to tell a joke. If someone has just returned from a funeral or is currently clearly contending with a like source of emotional stress, then an attempt to add joking to the situation is unlikely to be appreciated.

2.    Pick a subject that you know your audience will find funny. For instance, if your friends usually joke about traffic, it’s a pretty safe bet that making additional jokes about traffic will be welcomed. If you’re in a group that you know enjoys joking about sports, an obvious choice would be to tailor any jokes made to sports.

3.    It is always better to make a joke about a situation than it is to make a joke about a person. A person can be insulted by being made the subject of a joke even if he or she is not present when the joke is made. After all, a third party could always repeat that joke to the person later. Situations (traffic, long lines, bad weather) have no emotions, so situations cannot get insulted. If you do make a joke about a person, it is always safest to joke about yourself.

4.    Keeps jokes short. The longer the joke, the more possibilities for mistakes to occur and someone to get hurt or offended.

5.    Never make jokes that involve sex or someone’s physical appearance (“you look really beautiful”).  Such jokes all too often tend to be taken badly.

6.    Never make jokes about safety (“someone ran away”), danger (“this car is unsafe”), health (“someone had a heart attack”) or important personal issues (“your friend’s struggling marriage”). These issues are more often than not so important that people are uncomfortable with any jokes made about them.

7.    Do not embarrass someone else with a joke. The audience who heard the joke may only remember it for a short time, but the person who was embarrassed will remember the resultant humiliation much longer and consequently may be upset with you for a good long while.

8.    Look for nonverbal signs that indicate whether a person found a joke funny or not. For example, if a person is laughing then a joke probably went well. If  a person is frowning, then it is important to check on how that person received the joke.

9.    If you make an error or upset someone with a joke, always remember to apologize. You are the one who made the offending joke, therefore the resulting consequences are  solely your fault and responsibility. Never try to make excuses (“You need to have a better sense of humor”). Such excuses attempt to deflect blame onto the other person and may make him or her even more upset.

Learn about brain injury treatment services at the Transitional Learning Center: tlcrehab.org

Free Webinar on Social Security Disability

The Brain Injury Association of America will be hosting a free webinar titled “Understanding Social Security Disability” on Thursday, October 9th at 2 pm CDT.  As a great many brain injury survivors face temporary or even permanent loss of the ability to work following an injury, it’s extremely common for survivors to apply for Disability.  The Social Security Disability process can be long and confusing, so this webinar is a great opportunity to learn about the rules and expectations encountered when navigating this process.

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/2720859529141907201

Learn about brain injury treatment services at the Transitional Learning Center: tlcrehab.org