Like quite a few of you, I’ve thought about Rep. Gabrielle Giffords a lot since that crazed guy shot her in the head on Jan. 8 in Tuscon, AZ. …I’ve wondered how she’s doing with all of it, how rehab is going for her at TIRR, what kind of therapy sessions she is going through each morning and afternoon, if her therapists and nurses and techs are loving on her and truly caring for her and Mark as she re-learns all of the intricacies of daily living….

I’m hearing more and more stories from people who are being thrown into the “world of TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury)” with no idea of what to do or expect.

So (step into my world) … since this is weighing so heavy on me right now, let me pass along a few “hints” I’ve written down that might help you, if ever you journey along the TBI-path with somebody — 

Ways to Help TBI Survivors

  • Do not “talk down” to them
  • Do not be loud
  • Speak softly/in a normal tone of voice
  • Speak slowly
  • Get comfortable with silence/give them time to respond
  • As much as possible, keep things the same/be consistent
  • Try not to take things personally
  • Meet them at their level
  • Let them have some privacy
  • Speak clearly, i.e. enunciate and pronounce consonants
  • Use non-verbal communication in a positive way
  • Etc.

  Non-Verbal Communication

7% Verbal; 93% Non-Verbal

  • Facial expressions
  • Body gestures
  • Tone of voice
  • Eyes
  • Touch
  • Speed of speech
  • Walk