ASHI and MEDIC First Aid Blog

March 19, 2019

Brain Injury Awareness Month

March is Brain Injury Awareness Month, and the theme for 2018-2020 is “Change Your Mind.”

The Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) explains that their #ChangeYourMind public awareness campaign seeks to:

  • De-stigmatizing brain injury through outreach within the brain injury community 

  • Empowering those who have survived brain injury and their caregivers

  • Promoting the many types of support that are available to people living with brain injury

Among the educational communications on BIA’s website is a downloadable PDF of brain injury facts and statistics that show just how widespread and serious brain injuries are in the U.S.:

  • Every 9 seconds, someone in the United States sustains a brain injury.

  • More than 3.5 million children and adults sustain an acquired brain injury (ABI) each year.

  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a type of ABI. A TBI is caused by trauma to the brain from an external force.

  • One of every 60 people in the U.S. lives with a TBI-related disability. At least 2.5 million people sustain a TBI, and 50,000 people die

You can download a copy of the fact sheet here.

What to do when someone has a head injury

Injury to the brain can occur from a significant blow to the head or by rapid movements of the head that force the brain to bounce around within the skull. Significant swelling or bleeding inside the skull can result in increased pressure that damages delicate brain tissue.

Suspect serious brain injury when a blow to the head clearly results in a diminished level of responsiveness. Activate EMS without delay and stabilize the head with your hands. Do not attempt to stop the flow of blood or fluid from the ears or nose.

If the person has a seizure, protect the head as much as possible and protect him or her from bumping into nearby objects. Do not restrain the person tightly and do not place anything in his or her mouth. Seizures will generally last for just a few minutes. When the seizure stops, assess the person’s breathing and ability to respond. Provide CPR if necessary. Reassess regularly until EMS personnel take over.

A concussion is a brain injury that generally results in less immediate or obvi­ous signs. For more, see our blog post Emergency Care for Concussions.

In addition to the review of head and brain injuries in our ASHI and MEDIC First Aid core programs, we also offer specialized training for first responders from our 24-7 EMS library:

Sports Injuries

Head, neck and spine injuries are common injuries that occur with contact sports. The Sports Injuries course reviews how to recognize and respond to typical contact sport injuries, with a special focus on the relationship between the athletic trainer and the EMS crew during an emergency.

Combat-Related TBI 

Individuals who have post-concussive syndrome or symptoms that occur after traumatic brain injury often have problems with functions such as: attention, judgment, memory, the ability to coordinate activities, and effective cooperation. The Combat-Related TBI course helps EMS personnel develop a foundational understanding of what TBI is and the ongoing needs of people living with one or more cognitive, emotional, or behavioral disabilities.

Explore the 24-7 EMS Website





Subscribe to Email Updates

HSI-CTA-EmergencyCareTraining (1)
Screen Shot 2018-11-16 at 4.40.14 PM