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Published: April 12, 2021

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More Tips To Prep Your House For TBI Victims


Making your house more accessible for someone with a traumatic brain injury. Another thing I wanted to talk about is in addition to memory difficulties, which I’ve discussed as well as some of the light and sound things, there tends to be things that you can do in your house to make it easier for someone who’s suffered a traumatic brain injury. And what they are, are things that make it easier for them to go about their day in a way that doesn’t increase the chance of them making a mistake or get derailed off what they’re doing. For example, someone with a traumatic brain injury, one of the very common symptoms is short term memory loss. It means I can’t remember things and it’s not just minor things, it’s they won’t remember where they put something, they won’t be able to find something, they’ll know they had it, but they’ll just spend a lot of their time interrupted looking for things.

So, there’s a couple of ways you can set up your house to avoid this. First and foremost, put in a landline phone. And you want a landline phone that is not cordless, cordless phones you will lose. They will get lost, the person who needs to be called, the phone will be dead. You want to put in a phone that’s on the wall or plugged into something hard-wired, plugged in,, because that will make it, that they always know where a phone is that they can dial and get somebody or they can be called. It’s something you really want to do. Whereas if it’s a cell phone or if it’s a traditional, you know, cordless phone, they get lost, they run out of power. That’s something we consistently recommend to some people that we work with with traumatic brain injuries is you want to reduce the chances of losing things that are instrumental into daily life.

So, phone is one of them. Next things are limiting the places that they will put their items. After 30 or 45 days of repeating an action it becomes a habit. It no longer requires memory to do. And so what you do is you want to train the victim who’s suffered a traumatic brain injury to consistently come into the house and put all their things in one spot. If they have it in any other spot, they need to immediately go put it in the spot that is designated for the area of where that should be. For example, as soon as they walk in the house, you buy a big bowl or a wood box or something, keys, wallet, phone, any other instrumental things that they take any time they leave out of the house, all go in that spot, every single time. You don’t want it to go by their bed.

You don’t want it to go in the dining room. You don’t want it to be in the family room. You always want everything in that one bowl and it reduces the ongoing stress of having to deal with things in different spots all the time. And so we call it the bowl method. Basically, you put a bowl right inside the doorway or on the doorway out to the garage and anytime that person’s going anywhere, doctor’s appointment their kid’s house, their parent’s house, whatever it is, everything’s always there. They’re never looking for it. And if anyone else around them loved ones, sees those things and are anywhere else other than the bowl, they go put them in the bowl, it helps reduce the stress that they are already going through on a daily basis to try and get their habits focused on making sure all their items are in one place. So, that’s one of the things we’d recommend. It’s a very cheap fix. Go buy a big bowl or some other thing to put everything in, it goes in every single time.

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