Sensory Magnification and the Injured Brain Rant

by Jean Oostrom

Sensory overloadIt has been 16 years since I was diagnosed with a brain injury. During 16 years of recovery I just wanted someone to explain to everyone else, what was happening in my brain. Now I write about what is happening in my brain, so people with brain injuries and the people who care for people with brain injuries, can find answers so they can design a personal recovery path.

I believe there is a process that happens after a brain injury called “magnification of all senses” that can lead to “a place where the brain has had enough” and the result can be the “injured brain rant”.

It seems that after a brain injury the brain magnifies everything. This magnification of senses lead most brain injured people to a place where nothing makes sense and trying to explain it to people just makes it worse.

This process could be explained in this manner “all sounds, smells, and other senses outside of the brain are travelling “a million miles an hour” and all sounds, smells and other senses inside the brain are travelling at a “snail’s pace”.

It takes the damaged brain more time to process information, and the brain injured person can become very distressed because before the brain injury the brain processed information differently.

During this magnification process “when the brain has had enough” the brain injured person may have strong emotional reactions that “happen so quickly” and “so strongly” that it can be a “terrifying experience”.

When the “brain has had enough” it can lead to the “injured brain rant”. During the “injured brain rant” it is a “place” where people with brain injuries, get something in their brain, and they won’t stop talking until it has all been said. It is like the information is on a teleprompter and somebody has said that you cannot stop reading, until all the information is read, and you have to do it now, and you have to do it fast, and you have no choice.
But, for the brain injured person the place where the injured brain rant starts, happens so suddenly and with so much power, that the brain injured person doesn’t have time to even “think the thought” to not buy into the “teleprompter”.

Once people with brain injuries and the people who care for them understand the “magnification process”, understand the “place where the brain has had enough” and understand the “injured brain rant” it can take recovery on a different path.

Learn more about brain injury recovery at


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