Your Weekly Dose of #5ThoughtsFriday: A description of what we think is important at BIAMD
  #5Thoughts Friday
The "Common Sense" Edit ion
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MARCH 26-27, 2020


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Here are the 5 things we thought were
worth sharing with you this week:
Photo by  Toimetaja tõlkebüroo  on  Unsplash
This Article is part of BIAMD's Original Content Initiative, and will become a part of the Member Exclusive content available on the BIAMD Member Portal coming in late January.

Mental Health First Aid - Key Takeaways
This past December, The Brain Injury Association of Maryland (BIAMD) hosted a Mental Health First Aid  Training at The University of Maryland Rehabilitation and Orthopedic Institute. Mental Health First Aid  is a national program that teaches the skills to respond to the signs of mental illness and substance use. Our instructors, Anastasia Edmonston, Maryland TBI Partner Project Coordinator at the Maryland Behavioral Health Administration, and Shawn Pringle, Recovery Coach at Total Health Care, Inc.’s Substance Abuse Program, educated attendees about the most common mental illnesses – including d epression and mood disorders, a nxiety disorders , t rauma , p sychosis , and s ubstance use disorders .

Just as CPR helps you assist an individual having a heart attack, Mental Health First Aid helps you assist someone experiencing a mental health or substance use-related crisis. This accessible, 8-hour course taught us how to identify the risk factors and warning signs for mental health and addiction concerns, strategies for helping someone in both crisis and non-crisis situations, and where to turn for help. Most importantly, we learned about  recovery  and  resiliency  – or the belief that individuals experiencing these challenges can and do get better and use their strengths to stay well.

Here are 8 key takeaways from this training:

CLICK HERE to read more about this excellent training and please consider taking it yourselt.

The Nomination Categories are:

  • Individual with a Brain Injury
  • Family Member / Partner / Friend
  • Healthcare Professional - Working in the Brain Injury Community
  • Supporter / Advocate - Making Contributions in an Official Capacity

Awards will be presented at the BIAMD Annual Conference General Session on Thursday, March 26, 2020, at the Turf Valley Resort in Ellicott City, Maryland. 

Nominations should be received by no later than March 1, 2020 to allow us adequate time to select the award recipient and make arrangements for them to attend the awards ceremony.  

Credit: Laboratory of Neural Systems at The Rockefeller University
As you read this line, you’re bringing each word into clear view for a brief moment while blurring out the rest, perhaps even ignoring the roar of a leaf blower outside. It may seem like a trivial skill, but it’s actually fundamental to almost everything we do. If the brain weren’t able to pick and choose what portion of the incoming flood of sensory information should get premium processing, the world would look like utter chaos—an incomprehensible soup of attention-hijacking sounds and sights.

Meticulous research over decades has found that the control of this vital ability, called selective attention, belongs to a handful of areas in the brain’s parietal and frontal lobes. Now a new study suggests that another area in an unlikely location—the temporal lobe—also steers the spotlight of attention.

The unexpected addition raises new questions in what has long been considered a settled scientific field. “The last time an attention controlling area was discovered was 30 years ago,” says Winrich Freiwald, head of Rockefeller’s Laboratory of Neural Systems, who published the findings in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on November 4, 2019, “This is a fundamental discovery that might require a rethinking of old concepts about attentional control.”

Freiwald and his colleague Heiko Stemmann at the University of Bremen in Germany first encountered this brain area during an experiment a few years ago. They were studying brain activation in monkeys engaged in a task that requires maintaining focus on a subset of rapidly moving dots on a screen. As expected, visual areas specializing in motion detection, as well as areas known for selective attention, lit up on brain scans.

But there was also area PITd, named for its location in the dorsal part of the posterior inferotemporal cortex, whose activation the scientists couldn’t quite explain. “All of the areas we found made sense, except for this one,” Freiwald says.

CLICK HERE to learn more about this "new" area of attention.
MSKTC Recruiting Participants for TBI Consumer Factsheet Testing

The Model Systems Knowledge Translation Center ( MSKTC) is recruiting individuals with traumatic brain injury and their caregivers to provide feedback on new consumer factsheets on a wide range of topics such as behavior problems and sleep apnea.

To be eligible, participants must be at least 18 years old. Participants will receive a $25 gift card for their time. Call (202) 403-5600 or email  to register.  
Photo by  Freshh Connection  on  Unsplash
The 67-year-old woman had just flown back to her old hometown, Eugene, Ore., to pick up one more load of boxes to move them to her new hometown, Homer, Alaska. As usual, the shuttle to long-term parking was nowhere in sight, so she pulled out the handles of her bags and wheeled them down the now-familiar airport road. It was a long walk — maybe half a mile — but it was a beautiful afternoon for it.

A lone woman walking down this rarely used road in the airport caught the attention of Diana Chappell, an off-duty emergency medical technician, on her way to catch her own flight. She watched as the woman approached a building where some airport E.M.T.s were stationed. Suddenly the woman stopped. She rose to her toes and turned gracefully, then toppled over like a felled tree and just lay there.

Chappell jumped out of the car and ran to the woman. She was awake but couldn’t sit up. Chappell helped her move to the side of the road and took a quick visual survey. The woman had a scrape over her left eye where her glasses had smashed into her face. Her left knee was bleeding, and her left wrist was swelling.

She’d dropped the handle of one of her rolling bags, the woman explained. When she tried to pick it up, she fell. But she felt fine now. As she spoke, Chappell noticed that her speech was slightly slurred and that the left side of her mouth wasn’t moving normally.

CLICK HERE to find out more about this medical mystery.
2) What We are Watching We Think
You Might FInd Interesting
to Educate about Mental Health
ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ7)--  Mental Health in Motion  is a local organization that provides "mental health advocacy and education through the visual experience of dance stories."

Founder Lisa Linger visited the WDBJ7 studios some tips on dealing with stress from the holidays and the new year.
Watch the video for more.

CLICK HERE or click the PHOTO ABOVE to see the video on this innovative initiative out of Virginia.
1) Quote We Are Contemplating...

"The chief beauty about time
is that you cannot waste it in advance.
The next year, the next day, the next hour are lying ready for you,
as perfect, as unspoiled,
as if you had never wasted or misapplied
a single moment in all your life.
You can turn over a new leaf every hour
if you choose.”

Have you ever clicked on the pictures posted at the end of every #5ThoughtsFridays? Try it. You might learn something fun!
Photo by  Alice Donovan Rouse  on  Unsplash
Happy Birthday, Sue.

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  Thanks for reading! Have a wonderful weekend.