A truly unbelievable email arrived in the ThinkFun inbox the other day. Liane suffered extensive brain damage, was even declared dead at one point, and had to relearn to speak and walk. Here she shares how a simple game played a vital role in her incredible recovery – grab a Kleenex before you dive into this one!
To Whom It May Concern:
I was misdiagnosed by a doctor as having Dystonia in 2005. This is similar to Parkinson’s. I was put on Parkinson’s meds when I was not even ill. As a result the meds killed me. I was dead long enough to be declared dead. I sustained extensive Brain Damage because I was gone too long. I eventually woke up, but I had terrible Brain Damage.
I had to relearn my vocabulary by reading the Dictionary and Thesaurus. I had to go to Physical Therapy to learn how to walk again. I had to learn how to speak again. My hand strength was low and I had to only interact with things I could easily grip with a loose hand grip and not drop as my hand strength was weak.
I read on the Internet that if you stimulate the brain, it will grow new Neural Paths and Dendrites around the dread brain cells. You can never grow or create new brain cells. You can never repair dead or damaged brain cells. BUT you can stimulate the brain AND the brain will respond by reaching out to grow around the dead around those dead areas and make those connections again. It took me two years of brain stimulation for my brain tests at UCLA to register as 0% Brain Damage. It does work.
I used your product Shape by Shape as part of my daily regimen I had in place to help me recover. I did the puzzles every day to stimulate my brain and bring it back. I did other things too, but the puzzle was a part of my daily routine to help me recover.
I showed the puzzle to my doctors to UCLA. They were surprised that I thought to use it for recovery, but they said it makes sense that it helped me. I recommend it to people who have had a stroke, neurological damage or some sort of brain damage. My brain damage was due to oxygen deprivation as my heart and lungs stopped and I was declared dead.
I wanted to let you know about the expanded use of your product so you can promote them to doctors, hospitals, clinics, charities, support groups, etc. that are involved with stroke victims, neurological illnesses, oxygen deprivation brain damage (swimming pool accidents, drowning accidents, accidental drug overdose, etc.).
Your puzzles also have value to fight off Alzheimer’s Disease. It is vital we do new things, learn new tasks, keep our brain engages, keep our brain learning, exercise our brain throughout our life in order to keep back the tide of Alzheimer’s Disease.
The large pieces make it easy to pick up and hold them when you have weak hand strength and lack dexterity as an elderly person, a stroke victim or a brain damage patient in recovery. The large 3D pieces help with the work on hand eye coordination that must be done in recovery. This is an advantage over a video game. A video game does not challenge me for hand eye coordination, hand strength or dexterity the way an actual puzzle does. The physical puzzle has more value.
I just wanted to let you know there are more uses for your products than you ever suspected. Please expand your marketing to included patients. Other people can benefit past me. I just happened to see your puzzle in Barnes and Noble. I picked it up out of desperation to find a way to heal my brain. I didn’t know if it would work, but it did work.
The doctors told me, “You will walk with a cane the rest of your life.” I do not walk with a cane anymore, and I don’t fall over anymore. I was told, “You will never have clear speech.” Today, I speak just fine. I can speak and my voice is clear. My words are not garbled. I am understood. My memory is improved. Everything is improved.
My brain testing at UCLA Hospital two years later revealed 0% brain damage. Everything was gone. The doctors were impressed!!!!
Please consider expanding your marketing and sales to the medical field. People can benefit from your products. Thanks so much for making such fabulous products. You really helped me a great deal.
Read another amazing story from a woman in Alaska who used ThinkFun games to recover from traumatic brain injury – a 2nd box of Kleenex may be necessary!