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Understanding the basics of brain functioning reveals why a TBI is so devastating

The human brain only weighs around three pounds, yet this miraculous and mysterious organ serves as the main motherboard for everything that we are and do. While we all know that the brain plays a vital role in human functioning, many people don't necessarily understand the brain's anatomy or the important role that each part of the brain plays.

The brain is comprised of three major sections; the brainstem, cerebellum and cerebrum. Each section is responsible for various cognitive and physical functioning. For example, the brainstem is responsible for many "automatic functions" or those that we don't even think about such as breathing, swallowing and sleeping. The cerebrum "performs higher functioning" related to reasoning, emotions, fine motor skills, vision and hearing. Lastly, the cerebellum is responsible for controlling physical abilities related to coordination, balance and posture.


The brain is also divided into right and left hemispheres and comprised of frontal, parietal, occipital and temporal lobes which are responsible for specific functions in coordination with other areas of the brain. The full complexity and importance of the human brain often isn't fully realized until an injury and brain damage occurs.

A brain injury may occur if an individual is involved in a motor vehicle accident or slips and falls. Additionally, sport-related head injuries and those related to medical and medication errors can also result in permanent brain damage. Depending on the part of the brain that's affected, symptoms of a brain injury may range from dizziness and nausea to major deficiencies in one's cognitive and physical processes and abilities.

In cases where an individual's brain injury results from an accident or incident that another individual caused or contributed to, it's wise to consult with an attorney.

Source: alzheimer's association, "Brain Tour," Sept. 17, 2015

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