Hundreds of thousands of military serviceman have been diagnosed with some level of traumatic brain injury (TBI) in the past decade, many as a result of combat injury. TBI and psychological health (PH) conditions can have long-term and sometimes severe effects on service members’ lives, affecting their ability to work, socialize with others, complete basic tasks, and even spending time with their family. Depression, inability to work or live a normal life, and more tragic consequences including suicide can happen. Proper diagnosis and treatment are crucial to addressing this critical need among America’s military serviceman.
The Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund is addressing this critical need. Following the opening of the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE) in 2010, the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund launched its current effort: building “Intrepid Spirit” centers to serve as satellites to NICoE and extend the care provided at NICoE out to the home bases of many of the troops suffering the effects of TBI and PH conditions. Nine centers will be constructed in total with seven centers already completed and in operation.
Each Intrepid Spirit center is approximately 25,000 square feet and are designed around the interdisciplinary model of care developed at NICoE. This model of care brings all disciplines involved in TBI care together under one roof, providing a comprehensive means of delivering care. TBI can result in many different symptoms, including physical symptoms such as headaches, difficulty concentrating, memory loss, irritability, mood swings; and mental health symptoms such as verbal or physical outbursts, impulsive behavior, poor judgement, inflexibility, depression or anxiety.
One of the pieces they will be using to work with our serviceman is the tWall. The tWall is an interactive touch wall that has been shown to stimulate and improve motor and sensomotor skills. The training of coordination, and gross motor skill development can lead to an increase for the the patient. Serviceman will develop physical mobility, and improve physical endurance and reaction training.
The Intrepid Spirit model of interdisciplinary care brings together all the medical disciplines that can address these many and varied symptoms: Neurologist, Nutritionist, physical therapist, speech therapist, psychiatrist, and others. These experts provide the specialized care TBI requires using methods both traditional such as neurological exams, physical therapy and sleep studies; and non-traditional, such as acupuncture, art therapy and speech therapy. This model of care has proven amazingly successful, allowing more than 90% of patients treated able to return to family and regular service in the armed forces with many of their symptoms reduced or controlled.
Exergame Fitness is extremely proud to be a part of the National Intrepid Center of Excellence Centers, and we look forward to continuing to support our military.