This just got posted as a comment at my post about confabulating as a kid
- You can get away with treating your brain pretty badly and it still works okay, as long as you don’t have a head injury. That rule changes dramatically after a head injury. The brain malfunctions under any kind of unfavorable operating conditions.
- For example, if you skip breakfast and eat fast food for lunch, expect your brain to get sluggish. Having a healthy breakfast, including some kind of meat or other protein, is strongly recommended.
- You should not subject your brain to any kind of nutritional deficiency. That means drinking plenty of water, and avoiding starving yourself.
- There are many theories about nutritional effects on brain function that recommend avoiding sugar, white flour, or both. These are major ingredients in fast food. Although science has not reached agreement that eating a diet which is heavy in fruits and vegetables, whole grain bread, and healthy sources of protein (fish and chicken) helps your brain to work better, enough nutritionists suggest this kind of diet to make it worth considering.
- Lack of sleep is a major source of reduced brain ability, especially in people who have had head injuries. To the extent that you can do so, you should make sure to get enough sleep. If you have difficulty in sleeping, this topic will be discussed in an advanced chapter.
- If your injury makes you prone to getting tired, there are “energy management” techniques that allow you to make best use of the capacity you have.
- Try to do your most difficult and important work early in the day.
- Try to avoid working under tension as much as possible, as that burns extra energy.
- Try not to do one kind of activity for long periods of time. Switch off from one activity to a completely different kind. For example, after reading something difficult for half an hour, switch to doing dishes or gardening. When you do this, you stop draining the last chemicals out of the reading systems of your brain and start using other, different systems. Switching activities like this can allow you to get a great deal done without getting completely exhausted.
- If there are stresses where you live or spend time, work on reducing those stresses. For example, after living or hanging out in a messy room for a long time, some people find that it actually reduces stress to straighten it up. If your living area is infested with bugs, and that bothers you, take steps to get rid of them. Any reduction in stress is likely to make everything work better.
- Getting some physical exercise every day seems to help the brain to work better.