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When can a child return to school after a traumatic brain injury?

Your child's daily routines are a source of stability that gives him or her a solid base to develop, grow and learn. However, when your child suffers a traumatic brain injury, it can disrupt his or her routines significantly. For this reason, it's important that you help your child return to his or her daily school schedule as soon as possible following a traumatic brain injury.

When you child returns to school, however, you'll want to take into account the notion he or she may have new emotional and educational needs. As such, you'll need to plan your child's return to school carefully -- for example, with an Individualized Education Program (IEP). Here are a few things to consider in this regard:

-- Keep in mind that your child's Individualized Education Program (IEP) needs to stay flexible, so it can be changed based on your child's needs as they are revealed.

-- Study what's known about traumatic brain injury so you can assist your child in adjusting when it's time to return to school.

-- Work with your child's medical providers to better understand his or her injury, required treatments, and don't be afraid to ask questions.

-- Track your child's treatment with a notebook. Keep your child's medical history organized and ready for review. Take notes on what medical providers, nurses and doctors say about your child's condition and needs.

-- Discuss your child's condition with other parents of children with TBI so you can gain insight on your child's condition.

If your son or daughter suffered a child brain injury due to no fault of his or her own, it's likely that your child will have stiff medical bills that need to be paid. You may be able to seek personal injury claims against the party at fault for your child's accident in order to recoup the costs associated with his or her medical care.

Source: Brain Injury Association of America, "Brain Injury in Children," accessed May 26, 2017

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