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Social Judgement

Physical Communication Cognitive Behavioural / Emotional

Acquired brain injury may affect social judgement as a result of disinhibition or an inability to be able to read social clues. Disinhibition is a lack of restraint which is shown as disregard for social conventions, impulsivity, and poor risk assessment.

Disinhibited behaviour occurs when people no longer follow the social rules about what or where to say or do something. They may present as rude, tactless or even offensive. A person with a brain injury may make a comment without realising its impact on others or make a joke that is inappropriate in the context.

A person with a brain injury may enter another person’s ‘personal space’ without being aware that it is uncomfortable for them. They may not understand the ‘rules of conversation’ and talk without letting the other person speak, over-talk another person, or have difficulty staying ‘on topic’ which can be frustrating for others.

People with impaired social judgement may have other more problematic behaviours, such as verbal or physical aggression, socially inappropriate behaviour, sexual disinhibition, wandering, and repetitive behaviour.

With support and rehabilitation, social problems do improve for people with acquired brain injury but it is necessary for them to understand that there is an issue and be prepared to work on it.


"Families and professionals spend time focusing on the negative aspects of ABI. Families need to be properly supported as 'resilience' is key to delivering successful outcomes for children and young people."
Roberta De Pompeii; USA
"We would like to see earlier identification and support for children with brain injuries to help them succeed in school."
Dalton Leong; Chief Executive of the Children's Trust
"Brain development is complex and prolonged. Brain plasticity is influenced by a range of factors. Plasticity provides a base for neuro-rehab therapies and treatment"
Professor Bryan Kolb; Canada
"NHS clinicians struggle with what intervention to priorities in pediatric neuro-rehabilitation due to limited clinical time and the complexity of needs. Children, clinicians, parents and schools all have different neuro-rehabilitation priorities"
Recolo; United Kingdom
"We need to harness the power of brain plasticity for treating children and young people with brain injury. Stressful experiences alter brain development of a child, especially at the key ages of 0-3 and at ages 10-16"
Professor Bryan Kolb; Canada
"Strength-based family intervention after pediatric ABI is essential. Parents need to be equipped with the skills to cope and advocate for the child."
Caron Gan; Canada
"Different 'experts' involved in pediatric neuro-rehabilitation come from different organisational cultures which causes conflict and has a negative effect on the outcomes for the child."
Barbara O'Connell; Ireland
"Healthy teens are better at identifying strategies to deal with barriers. KIDS WITH ABI'S CAN'T!"
Shari Wade; USA
"Rehabilitation interventions can lead to positive outcomes for children and their families if delivered in the familiar home environment and applied to everyday situations"
Cerebra; United Kingdom
"Taking brain injured children home causes high stress for families. Disjointed services exacerbate family stress levels."
Deborah Andrews; New Zealand

OUR MISSION: To work to remove (health) inequalities for children & young people affected by acquired brain injury; and provide effective support to their families that makes a real difference.

Council for Disabled Children Lottery Funded