Infant brain damage

Written by: Antònia Enseñat Cantallops
Edited by: Top Doctors®

In recent years, there has been a important increase in both congenital and acquired brain injury ( head trauma, stroke, brain tumors, infectious diseases and cerebral palsy ), and neurodevelopmental disorders ( genetic disorders, autism spectrum disorders and learning disabilities ) in children. These changes lead to physical, cognitive, behavioral, emotional and social injuries, affecting the child, their family, their social environment and school performance, so that intervention programs should integrate the three scopes.

Thanks to advances in medicine, the application of new technologies and existing treatments, many of these children survive the aftermath brain. All this has led to a growing concern about child brain injury, given the impact that the sequelae on their development and their capacity for social adaptation. Also , the brain damage in children represents an interruption of the course of normal development, Unlike the adult population, whose stages of development have been achieved.

Today, childhood brain damage is known as the“silent&rdquo epidemic ;, because, at first, many children do not have an observable cognitive deficits and have to spend two or three years so that the problems associated are evident to brain damage. After this time, the physical injuries apparently have been corrected, but still remain the cognitive, psychological and psychiatric problems. It usually ends once the acute phase of treatment, the child is usually incorporated into the school environment, where often underestimate their cognitive difficulties. Therefore, many neuropsychological disorders following brain damage are perceived only later, during development, when the poor performance in school raises suspicions that something is happening. Family functioning, the socioeconomic status, access to rehabilitation services and response to disability will have an important role in recovery after brain injury.

Among the consequences of brain damage, the neuropsychological alterations include cognitive, and behavioral aspects emocionale s. These children may have problems: attention difficulties and reduction of the speed of information processing, memory disturbances and difficulties in new learning, language disorders and speech, impaired executive functions and behavioral and emotional disorders.


Childhood neuropsychological rehabilitation should include the child, their family and school.

Before designing a program of child neuropsychological rehabilitation, is essential to a complete neuropsychological evaluation to assess the cognitive, emotional and behavioral functioning of the child. This information will establish the diagnosis, the type of intervention required and guide treatment throughout the entire process. The objectives of child neuropsychological rehabilitation are to help the recovery and work with the child with brain injury and their families to compensate, restore or replace the cognitive deficit, as well as understanding and treating cognitive, behavioral, emotional and social problems to find out how this deficit influences in their environment.

The child neuropsychological rehabilitation should include the child, their family and school. must be integrated in the school intervention model, as it is a complex environment that requires academic, social and behavioral skills. The aim of neuropsychological rehabilitation is not only the recovery of higher mental functions but is primarily to provide assistance in the search for an improvement in the quality of life of the child after brain injury. This includes family, school, friends, community and leisure activities. It should help the child develop coping strategies and ways to get involved in your community so you can live the best quality of life possible. Children with brain injury Neuropsychological intervention must have a long-term, especially during periods of academic transition (preschool, primary, secondary ). It is important to work with the rehabilitation team, family and school. The introduction in the rehabilitation program of behavior modification in children with behavioral problems resulting from brain injury gives us, first, teach, establish or increase desirable behaviors and adapted to the environment and, simultaneously, reduce, restrict or eliminate behaviors disruptive significantly interfering in the activities of daily life of the child. One of the current challenges of child neuropsychological rehabilitation is to develop tools that focus on addressing cognitive problems that may arise during the development of the child and to facilitate the generalization of the contents of the sessions of cognitive rehabilitation activities everyday.


Intervention in School

A very important aspect in child neuropsychological rehabilitation is intervention through educational programs aimed at the family and school. Help to understand the problems with children. It is very important to give information and written guidelines for parents and teachers, and to help them understand the cognitive, behavioral and, thus, will be able to make alterations proper intervention. The acquisition of new learning after brain damage can be complicated. Interventions in education programs aimed at speeding up these processes and is suitable to perform tutoring, individually or in small groups, so that these children can progress more quickly. Schools, namely teachers, should maintain regular contact with the child neuropsychologist and receive explicit guidelines for intervention, with the aim of enhancing the learning process according to the characteristics of each child. The tutoring, individual type or in small groups, to facilitate the consolidation of the concepts discussed in the classroom, thus ensuring that these have been acquired. Curricular adaptations, from the first moment the child is reinstated in school, will help normalize the situation of transition hospital - home-school, and will be able to function as an important aid in their motivation to continue treatment and achieve goals neuropsychological short, medium and long term. This process of education must continue throughout school life of the child and must go through different stages in education, as new problems and difficulties throughout school life may appear.

In short, the neuropsychological rehabilitation has to be done not only in the short and medium term, but also long term. Specialists should be consultants for teachers, parents and significant others, and should aim“organizing routines of life at school, as well as other activities of daily life&rdquo ;. Each program should allow tracking of animals, so that new intervention strategies are targeted to meet the new demands of the child throughout their development environment.


*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

By Antònia Enseñat Cantallops

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

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