Your Brain is like a Battery
I was recently working with someone who had neck pain after a mountain biking accident. During the evaluation, he reported hitting his head on the ground and experiencing a concussion during the accident. He stated "I am having difficulty remembering recent events and multi-tasking is near impossible! It's extremely frustrating!." Performing higher level tasks was easier in the morning and became progressively more challenging throughout each day. Additionally, he reported the desire to take naps throughout the day. When he questioned why his brain felt exhausted, I told him "It is because your brain operates much like a battery."
(This text is adapted from "Sticks & Stones," a book by Jarod Hall PT, DPT, OCS and Jim Heafner PT, DPT, OCS. "Sticks and Stones" is in the final stages of development. Final versions of the text to be released to public in May 2018. Please reach out if you are interested in learning more information!)
If you have persistent pain, recently had a surgery, or an injury (such as a concussion), your brain may be working in overdrive! In each of these scenarios it's not uncommon for patients to report that their brains feel tired early in the day, that they have trouble doing complex thinking tasks such as math, and even mix up their left from their right! Why does this happen? In situations like this you can liken your brain to a battery. This idea can be thought of in two separate ways.
1) You start each day at 100%, but quickly drain the battery each day
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