Turn Text Only Off

Page Utilities


Risky Behaviors and Brain Injury

Comments [1]

Michael Paul Mason, BrainLine

Risky Behaviors and Brain Injury

If a young adult has sustained a series of mild brain injuries during snow boarding, vehicle crashes, and incidents with substance abuse, what can be done to help him with issues that continue years later?


Young adults — especially males — are at high risk for brain injury because they often engage in risky activities. Once a young person has sustained a brain injury, it's important to ascertain exactly what problems have resulted from the brain injury. Many times, psychosocial problems will begin to appear, so it will be helpful to not only seek medical support, but therapeutic support as well. Doctors may suggest the help of counselors, social workers, or other therapists to help their patient live a more productive and meaningful life.

Substance abuse is an all too-common problem for many individuals following a brain injury. Some people turn to alcohol or drugs in hopes of finding some relief from pain, depression, or anxiety, but oftentimes these substances only compound the problem and ultimately interfere with a person's recovery.

Following a brain injury, many people experience impairments in their executive functioning, affecting their sense of judgment and insight. When the ability to make good choices is impaired, some people are particularly susceptible to the influence of friends and family. For people with a brain injury, peer influence can be a pronounced factor that can have both positive or negative effects.

In more complex cases, sometimes the best therapeutic intervention requires changing a person's environment. What seems to trigger times of stress or frustration? The answer could surprise you. It may require turning off the television, a change of diet, or simply the creation of a better environment for resting and relaxation. Some people may enlist the help of a behavioral analyst to create a plan for positive coping strategies.


Click here to go to About Ask the Expert.

Michael Paul Mason Michael Paul Mason, Michael Paul Mason is the founding editor of This Land, a monthly magazine based in Tulsa. Mason's first book, Head Cases: Stories of Brain Injury and Its Aftermath, is an exploration into the harsh realities endured by people with brain injury. 

The contents of Brainline (the “Web Site”), such as text, graphics, images, information obtained from the Web Site’s licensors and/or consultants, and other material contained on the Web Site (collectively, the “Content”) are for informational purposes only. The Content is not intended to be a substitute for medical, legal, or other professional advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

Specifically, with regards to medical issues, always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on the Web Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately. The Web Site does not recommend or endorse any specific tests, physicians, products, procedures, opinions, or other information that may be mentioned on the Web Site. Reliance on any information provided by the Web Site or by employees, volunteers or contractors or others associated with the Web Site and/or other visitors to the Web Site is solely at your own risk.

Comments [1]

This question is like asking, The cow got out of the barn, What should I do? If a teen has suffered his or her first concussion, they need to be adequately informed of their mortality. A second concussion can be deadly if not life changing. The medical and psychological community need to properly inform patients about the long term damage from a concussion, especially when there are more concussions to follow. The patient needs to make informed decisions about taking future risks of concussion.

Jun 9th, 2010 3:18am

BrainLine Footer


BrainLineMilitary.org is supported in part by generous grants
from the Bob Woodruff Foundation and the Infinite Hero Foundation.

Bob Woodruff Foundation  Infinite Hero Foundation

© 2017 WETA All Rights Reserved

Javascript is disabled. Please be aware that some parts of the site may not function as expected!