If you or your loved one has recently sustained a left hemisphere brain injury — due to a stroke or other brain injury — you may be overwhelmed with questions like:
In anticipation of Brain Injury Awareness Month in March, this post will answer those questions and provide an overview of specific Constant Therapy exercises that may help in recovery from a left brain injury.
The brain is divided into two hemispheres, left and right, which are bridged by the corpus callosum, a bundle of nerves that functions like a highway to connect the two sides of the brain. While the left and right sides of the brain do communicate with one other, each hemisphere has primary control over particular functions.
Counterintuitively, each side of the brain controls the opposite side of the body. One of the key functions the left brain is responsible for, therefore, is right side body mobility.
Beyond that, the left hemisphere of the brain is especially important for language expression and comprehension. This is in part because several brain regions especially critical for language, such as Broca’s area and Wernicke’s area, are located in the left hemisphere of the brain. The left brain is therefore largely responsible for speaking, listening, reading, writing, and grammatical processing.
The left hemisphere is also crucial for logical reasoning skills—including numeracy, computation, and information processing—and executive functions like time awareness.
Due to the relative specialization of brain function, injuries to a particular hemisphere of the brain often assume common characteristics. Such damage can result from a traumatic brain injury, which typically follows a sudden, strong physical impact to the brain, or a non-traumatic brain injury, which can be caused by oxygen deprivation (during a stroke, for example) or chemical exposure.
A left brain injury occurs when the left cerebral hemisphere sustains damage that impacts its functioning. It is important to keep in mind, however, that many brain injuries ultimately affect both sides of the brain.
Every brain, and every brain injury, is unique. It is impossible to predict how an injury to the left cerebral hemisphere might manifest in a specific individual. However, there are patterns of brain damage that have been broadly observed by researchers and clinicians.
When the left side of the brain is damaged from a neurological injury (like a TBI) or event (like a stroke), language difficulties are one of the most common side effects. People who experience left brain injuries might have difficulty producing and comprehending spoken and/or written language (aphasia); coordinating the motor aspects of speech (apraxia); or with slurring their speech (dysarthria).
Left side brain damage may also result in challenges with numerical computations (such as counting or math operations) and processing and solving complex problems.
Movement on the right side of the body is also commonly affected with left side brain damage, and it may result in weakness and decreased sensitivity on the right side as well.
As you or your loved one is recovering from a left side brain damage, Constant Therapy’s customizable program can be a crucial partner in recovery success. The program’s extensive body of evidence-based exercises, which target specific skill areas, can be leveraged by you and/or your clinician to best address high-priority recovery targets.
Here are some Constant Therapy exercises that might be especially helpful for someone with left cerebral hemisphere damage:
Word retrieval, naming, and repetition speaking brain exercises
Language comprehension reading therapy activities:
Spelling and writing brain exercises:
Auditory comprehension listening therapy activities:
Numerical skill therapy activities:
The above exercises are just a small sampling of the many exercises Constant Therapy offers through its program that might aid in recovery from a left side brain injury. If you or a loved one might benefit from such therapy exercises during their recovery journey, Constant Therapy offers a 2-week free trial so that prospective users can try it out and experience the benefits for themselves. Most of all, it is important to remember that with time, dedication, and hope, improvement is possible. Therapy exercises that might seem impossible today can eventually become seamless with hard work and determination.