Monthly Archives

June 2021

Drowning Prevention

By Blog, News, Resources

PREVENT DROWNINGS AND POOL ACCIDENTS THIS SUMMER

69% of young children who drowned were not expected to be in or near water! These could be swimming pools, lakes, rivers, or even bathtubs!

Anoxic brain injury is not usually caused by a blow to the head. Instead, anoxic brain injury occurs when the brain is deprived of oxygen, such as drowning.

Top Things to Know

  1. Secure your pool with appropriate barriers.
  2. Designate a water watcher and stay within arm’s reach of young children.
  3. Install anti-entrapment drain covers and safety release systems to protect against drain entrapment.
  4. If a child is missing, check the water first.
  5. Install a secondary barrier, such as door alarms and locks that are out of the reach of a child on all doors and windows with direct access to the pool or spa area, and lockable covers.

Establish and Enforce Rules and Safe Behaviors

  1. Do not enter head first unless in a pool that has a safe diving area.
  2. Stay away from drains and other openings that cause suctio
  3. Swim with a buddy.
  4. Only swim when supervised by a water watcher.
  5. Swim sober.
  6. Supervise others sober and without distractions, such as reading or talking on or using a cell phone, as an accident can happen in seconds.

Take These Water Safety Steps

  1. Employ layers of protection including barriers to prevent access to water, life jackets, and close supervision of children to prevent drowning.
  2. Ensure every member of your family learns to swim so they at least achieve skills of water competency: able to enter the water, get a breath, stay afloat, change position, swim a distance, then get out of the water safely.
  3. Know what to do in a water emergency – including how to help someone in trouble in the water safely, call for emergency help and CPR.

More information at:

https://www.redcross.org/get-help/how-to-prepare-for-emergencies/types-of-emergencies/water-safety/home-pool-safety.html25

https://articles.bluehaven.com/safety-rules-for-your-backyard

https://www.spinalcord.com/anoxic-brain-injury

~Karl K & the Social Media Group

Wedding Season is Here

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The month of June has traditionally been seen as the best month for weddings, but why?

This tradition stems from the Roman goddess whom the month is named after, Juno.

Juno was the goddess of marriage, home, and family so June developed into the month for weddings, So much so that songs have been written about this. It is even said if a bride were married in June, she would be married the rest of her life, but does this mean you will not be happy if you get married in a different month? I do not believe so.

When I discovered that I had a brain tumor in 2020, I realized I needed to hold my wedding sooner than I had originally planned.  We decided on August because it was a good time in between my treatments. Then we had to look at venues, inside or outside depending on the weather, because August is hot, so we decided on inside. We also needed to decide how many guests we wanted to have, but we had a small wedding that ended up being the wedding we wanted.

There are many things to consider when planning a wedding and deciding which month is right for you is important. You also need to decide on where it will be. So, June does not have to be the month you get married in, any month you choose will be special for you.

I have also heard the saying “If it rains on your wedding day it is good luck.” Stemming from Hindu tradition, it is said if you tie the knot, and it gets wet it will be impossible to break. So, you may not be happy it rains but look at it as a bright silver lining for the day– my parents did. Thankfully, June tends to be rainy in many places like North Texas. Still, any day you pick is special to you.

Another wedding tradition, which comes from Victorian era England, is something old (the tie between the brides past and her family) something new (the new chapter of the bride’s life with her spouse) something borrowed (the sense of happiness borrowed from a married friend is transferred to the couple) something blue (the color of love purity, faithfulness and modesty) and a six pence in her shoe (which brings wealth to the couple), which all bring good luck to the bride. Still, any day you pick is special because it’s yours.

~ Annette K

Juneteenth

By Blog, Events, News, Newsletter, Resources, Video

Juneteenth

By: Della & Morgan

What is Juneteenth?

Juneteenth, the holiday, commemorates June 19, 1865. This day is important to African Americans because it was the day that the last group of slaves in the United States gained freedom. The last group of slaves received the news in Galveston, Texas on June 19, 1865. On January 1, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This document declared that all slaves shall be free. This was ignored by many slave owners. On January 31, 1865, President Abraham Lincoln abolished slavery once and for all with the 13th Amendment. The news did not travel fast because it was released during the Civil War. The news finally reached everyone after the Civil War ended in 1865. Juneteenth is also known as Freedom Day, Jubilee Day, or Liberation Day. This holiday started in Texas, as former slaves moved to the North, the holiday became national.

Juneteenth Today

African Americans celebrate Juneteenth as their own Independence Day. In this celebration, individuals come together to remember the past and celebrate the future. Some of the common activities that take place during this celebration are cookouts, parties, and even parades.

https://youtu.be/MR3WqYI6wco

D Day

By Blog, Events, News, Newsletter, Resources

By Jenny T

British statesman Winston Churchill once wrote, “Those that fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”  In my family we take this as a challenge. Both my grandfather and my father-in-law served in WWII, so patriotism is very important to us. 

It is now that time of year that we as Americans should turn our collective attention to the Epic 1944 Invasion That Changed the Course of WWII. The Allied invasion of Normandy was among the largest military operations ever taged.Without the brilliant planning and heroic sacrifices of the D-Day invasion, the Allies may have never defeated the Nazi forces in Europe.

The D-Day invasion is significant in history for the role it played in WWII. It marked the turn of the tide for the control maintained by Nazi Germany; less than a year after the invasion, the Allies formally accepted Nazi Germany’s surrender. 

Though the ‘D’ in D-Day doesn’t actually stand for anything. The military used the term D-Day to designate the launch date of a mission.he term has become synonymous with the remembrance of June 6, 1944, when more than 156,000 American, British and Canadian troops stormed 50 miles of Normandy’s fiercely defended beaches in northern France. 

Not only was D-Day the largest amphibious invasion in military history.

It is also interesting to note that Allied forces carried out a massive deception campaign in advance of D-Day. In addition bad  weather delayed the invasion.

Allied losses on D-Day are estimated to be around 4,413 dead. German numbers are not well recorded, but it is estimated that between 4,000 and 9,000 were killed. The Battle of Normandy was fierce and bloody and would last until late August when the Allies crossed the Seine River towards Paris. Casualty rates were slightly higher than they were during a typical day during the Battle of the Somme in 1916. Over 425,000 Allied and German troops were wounded, killed or listed as missing during the Battle of Normandy. Of these, around 200,000 were Allied casualties of which almost 53,714 were killed. No reliable figures exist for the German losses, but it is estimated that around 200,000 were killed or wounded with approximately 200,000 more taken prisoner. French civilian casualties during the Battle of Normandy stand at around 19,890 – not including the estimated 15,000 that had been killed during bombardments prior to D-Day. The Battle left 120,000 Normandy buildings destroyed and a further 270,000 damaged.

It was a day that cost many lives on all sides of the conflict, changing not only the future of countries, but of families as well. Because of that, there is much to be learned from those who experienced its victories and its horrors first hand.

Aphasia Awareness

By Blog, Events, News, Newsletter, Resources

By Karl K

A recent study by the National Aphasia Association revealed that a whopping 84.5% of people have never heard the term “Aphasia.”  Aphasia affects about two million Americans and is more common than Parkinson’s Disease, cerebral palsy, or muscular dystrophy. Nearly 180,000 Americans acquire the disorder each year. So, given these numbers, it is surprising how few people know anything about it.  I can tell you honestly that I knew what it was, but that is where my knowledge ended.

Aphasia is an “acquired communication disorder that impairs a person’s ability to process language but does not affect intelligence.” 1  People who have Aphasia typically have trouble talking to and understanding others.  Many of them are very slow in reading and writing.

This month we celebrate the many gains in treating Aphasia that allow someone to lead a normal life.  We celebrate the many hours put in by therapists, caseworkers, staff members, and caregivers that have made this possible.  We also celebrate amazing personal desires to go forward in life.  At the same time, we note that there is much more to do.

My recent experiences of leading the Aphasia Group at BIND (Brain Injury Network of Dallas) for many weeks have been very rewarding.  I find it remarkable to see the interest among our members who do not even have aphasia to learn and help others.

I feel that “victims” is an improper term to use.  It is not a disease.  It is a disorder.  Although it takes time to improve, the results are not always permanent. With work and perseverance, there is the potential to make positive gains in development. The research clearly shows that Aphasia is not correlated with lack of intelligence or mental illness.

 About 750,000 strokes occur each year in America.3  About a third of all strokes result in Aphasia. Between 25-40% of stroke survivors report that they acquired Aphasia at one point in their recovery.4  It can also result from a head injury, brain tumor, or other neurological causes.

People with Aphasia ask these questions, which are usually difficult for them to process.  One is about language retrieval and recognition:  (1)  Can a person say the words they want? (2) Can a person understand what others say? (3) Can a person listen and read without difficulty?  Another set of related questions is about how they speak:  (1) They have trouble saying the words they want to say.  (2) They switch sounds frequently.  (3) They use made-up words to compensate instead of staying silent.5

There are two categories of Aphasia problems that you see. Look at these two samples.  One is phonemic:  “Apple vs. Papple” or “Barber vs. Marmer.”  The other is semantic:  “Car vs. Van” or “Tiger vs. Lion” or “Foot vs. Shoe” or “Pear vs. Fruit;”

You can help others who suffer from Aphasia.  Here are five steps to follow:  (1) Be patient and do not rush the process.  (2) Use plenty of time to help the person improve.  (3) Establish a topic so that the person has a preview of what should follow.  (4) Use “yes” and “no” questions, instead of open-ended types.  (5) Repeat what they say and ask for understanding.6

I am sad that so many people who need help cannot get it.  I feel that way in many areas, not only about Aphasia.  Recently, I found numbers that show the current job market is strong for graduates in communication disorders. At the same time, I become angry when the help is wasted.

For several years, I have asked graduate students who are close to finishing their degrees what they would do about this.  I know when they get their job, and start working with clients, it is hard and tiring to think about doing work pro-bono.  However, it is the best thing and rewarding thing they can do.  I encourage them to do that.

You do not need to be a licensed therapist to help someone with Aphasia. All you must do is talk with someone. Listen.  Let them try words and phrases.  Celebrate their progress.  Help them feel good about themselves.   That does not cost any money, but the help is priceless.

NOTES:

1            https://edse6001learningdisabilities.weebly.com/

2            https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-resilient-brain

3            https://www.webmd.com/stroke/news

4            https://www.aphasia.org/aphasia-faqs/

5            https://www.wikihow.com/Communicate-with-Aphasia-Patients

6             https://medlineplus.gov/ency/patientinstructions/000024.htm

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