You are the same person. Just different. 


This can be hard to remember at times, but it's important to keep this in mind during tough days. 


Brain injuries affect different people in different ways, but many brain injury survivors will experience at least one of the issues below:



Even the smallest task that you used to simply do, and take for granted, can leave you completely drained. 



You may find that your short term memory worsens. While you might well recall childhood memories with clarity, you may now find it hard to remember names, faces and more recent events. 



Leaving home can feel intimidating, even if you were a confident traveller, pre-injury. Noise, traffic, crowds or unfamiliar places can leave you feeling daunted and unsettled. You may find that nowadays, you need to plan trips carefully, allowing more time than you used to and feel better writing details down about your destination and route. 



You can find it hard to concentrate, so may be unable to last through a movie, finish a book, complete a crossword or listen to/follow a conversation.


Slower Responses 

You may find that even if your hearing is Ok, you find that your body reacts more slowly to things, for example, if someone calls your name, or you're trying to cross the street. 


Changes in Character 

Personality changes are very often linked to head injury/brain trauma. If you were once quiet and mild-mannered, you may now find you have a short temper and feel intolerant about things that never used to bother you. Perhaps you were once really laid-back, but now find yourself fretful and anxious.


Dealing with these changes can be emotionally draining and very upsetting for both the survivor and their loved ones.


Physical issues

You may find that you experience muscle spasms, your balance is unsteady, or your hearing is affected. Sometimes the other senses can be affected - certain foods can taste completely different to how they did before your injury.

You may have higher sensitivity to noise or certain pitches, lose your sense of smell, or the ability to tell hot from cold (which can lead to dangerous situations, for example, draining a pan of boiling vegetables in the kitchen and burning/scalding yourself without being able to sense it).


Relationship changes

It's often the case that family dynamics can change for everyone after a brain injury. Of course, the injury is devastating for the survivor but there's also a knock-on effect on family, friends and colleagues.

It's really important  to remember that. Everyone is put under strain and spouses may find themselves in more of a carer-type of role.


If you are a spouse or family member, and need to talk, do bear in mind our Peer Group. Running every week in complete confidentiality, it offers the opportunity to talk openly and honestly in a safe, quiet and above all, non-judgmental environment. Simply talking through your concerns, frustrations and feelings can be a real help.


Above all, remember - you are not alone. 





Latest News

Positive Blue Badge changes ahead for those with hidden disabilities

The Blue Badge scheme is currently being reviewed and plans are afoot to extend the Badge to those with less visible disabilities, such as brain injury.


The changes are described as the biggest being made in the scheme in almost 50 years and it's hoped that they will offer a lifeline to people with hidden disabilities who suffer from travel difficulties.


Changes will come into force on 30th August 2019. 


For full details, please visit


An excellent 'Way Ahead' conference


We thoroughly enjoyed attending this year's 'Way Ahead' conference in early July. It was the ideal opportunity to share viewpoints and see the diverse range of services provided for those managing ABI. We also got to meet MP for Rhondda, Chris Bryant, who has been working incredibly hard in parliament to improve aftercare and neuro paths for those with ABI and their loved ones. For more information, please visit 'Staff News'!




Fancy a challenge? Why not try the Northampton Half Marathon for HEN?


If you want to fulfill a personal challenge but find the idea of the London Marathon a bit too daunting, why not consider running the Northampton Half Marathon for Headway East Northants?


The Half Marathon will be held on Sunday 29th September. We've teamed up with 'Go Beyond Sport' who are managing the event - it's free to register and your only commitment is to raise a minimum of £100 for us.


For further details, and to register, please visit