A 21-YEAR-old woman who sustained a brain injury after falling from a horse has spoken out about the impact of her accident.
Jasmine George, from Elmley Castle, near Pershore, Worcestershire, shared her story in support of an awareness-raising campaign.
The 'A New Me' campaign has been launched by brain injury charity Headway to coincide with Action for Brain Injury Week, which takes place from Monday, May 8, to Sunday, May 14.
A recent Headway survey found that most brain injury survivors feel like a different person after their injury.
Ms George has supported the campaign by talking about her accident, which happened just before her final A Level exams.
She said: "I would sit in the corner in silence. I couldn't walk, I wasn’t talking, I wasn’t myself.
"Everybody was telling me 'you need to get out and see people'.
"I get tired really easily and for a 21-year-old that’s the most frustrating thing ever.
"Even now if I know I’m going out on a Saturday night I must not do anything on Friday because I won’t be able to do it."
Kathryn Davis, chief executive of Headway, said the charity's study highlighted how lives can be altered in an instant by injuries.
“We often hear people tell us that their husband or wife is not the person they married, or that the person they knew didn’t really return from the hospital," she said.
"Coming to terms with the fact that you have not only lost the life you once led, but also the person you once were must be unimaginably difficult.
"While some will understandably struggle to accept the new person they have become, others positively embrace the change by celebrating the anniversary of their injury as a ‘second birthday’."
Some 56 per cent of the survey's respondents said their brain injury had a negative impact on family life.
The majority of people involved in the study also felt friends did not understand their injury and 74 per cent thought it had damaged their social life.
Some survivors feel their self-esteem has dropped since acquiring a brain injury.
Many also acknowledge the anniversary of their injury.
The study involved over 860 people from across the UK and 74 per cent of the respondents said they felt like a new person after their brain injury.