When a family member or friend experiences a brain injury it can be confronting, with changes in the personality and behaviour of the injured person that are difficult to understand. In the period following the injury, there may be concern that these changes are permanent. While it is understandable that people may want a timeline for recovery, each individual recovers from an acquired brain injury in their own way, so it is difficult to predict how long personality and behavioural changes may last.
Common personality and behavioural changes include:
- Lack of sexual and social inhibition
- Depression or withdrawing from social participation
Unfortunately the injured person is often unaware of these changes, which can make the situation particularly distressing for those around them. Behavioural or personality changes can often be more difficult for family members to cope with than the more tangible physical or cognitive difficulties.
People deal with change in different ways – remember that there is no “right” way. Some people choose to cope on their own, while others seek out support groups, counselling or education.
You can talk to ReNew staff about support services in your area, or use the list of services on this website.