Traumatic brain injury

Traumatic brain injury

A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a temporary or permanent impairment of the brain caused by a blow or jolt to the head. Not all blows or jolts to the head, however, result in a traumatic brain injury. A TBI is often caused by a penetrating wound to the head.

The severity of the injury may range from mild― where a person might be briefly confused or unconsciousness, to severe― where a person suffers an extended period of unconsciousness or amnesia after the injury.


Military duties increase the risk of sustaining a TBI. Blasts are a leading cause of TBI for active duty military personnel in combat. Other causes of TBI in the military are:

  • Bullets and fragments
  • Motor vehicle-traffic crashes
  • Assaults
  • Falls

Is there any treatment?

Fortunately, there are treatments for TBI available. The first step is getting screened for TBI. Call the Illinois Warrior Assistance Program at 866-554-IWAP (4927) and ask to be screened for TBI.

IWAP is a confidential resource provided by the State of Illinois. It is not connected to the U.S. Armed Forces or the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. IWAP services are provided by Magellan Health, Inc., a nationally recognized leader in mental health and wellness.


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Common signs of Post-Traumatic Stress
and Traumatic Brain Injury:


MEMORY problems
Trouble CONCENTRATING
Re-occuring thoughts that FRIGHTEN you
IRRITABLE, frustrated and angry

Trouble SLEEPING or having nightmares
Feeling JUMPY, anxious or easily startled
Feeling emotionally NUMB
Feeling CUTOFF from other people and relationships