World Brain Day July 22
It's time to act. Let’s get together to promote better brain health globally.
Your Brain is the most amazing and complex organ in the human body. The human brain consists of millions and millions of electrical wires which are known as axons.
Brain health is the state of brain functioning across cognitive, sensory, social-emotional, behavioural and motor domains, allowing a person to realize their full potential over the life course, irrespective of the presence or absence of disorders.
This distance is the equivalent of travelling around the earth four times in a row! It is thought that there are about eighty billion neurons within the human brain. There are about ten trillion connections between these neurons which help us to read, write, watch, learn, plan, think, feel, move and solve problems on a daily basis.
This World Brain Day
- Prevention: Brain disabilities can be prevented, treated and rehabilitated.
- Awareness: Global brain health awareness can reduce the disability associated with brain disorders.
- Access: Universal access to care, treatment, rehabilitation and assistive technology is essential.
- Education: Education increases equity for those living with brain disabilities.
- Advocacy: Brain health is a human right that applies to everyone, everywhere.
- Neurological disorders are the number one cause of disability-adjusted life years.
- Neurological disability can be long-term physical, mental, cognitive or sensory impairments that may restrict a person from fully participating in society.
- Understanding the importance of prioritizing brain health requires an awareness of the important role the brain plays in leading a meaningful and purposeful life.
- Neurological disorders such as stroke, migraine, dementia, meningitis and epilepsy are the number one cause of disability-adjusted life years.
- People with disabilities can die up to 20 years earlier compared to people without disabilities.
- People with disabilities are twice as likely to develop chronic conditions which can further negatively impact brain health such as depression, diabetes, obesity or stroke.
- Care for brain disabilities is often provided by unpaid family members or friends.
Different determinants related to physical health, healthy environments, safety and security, life-long learning and social connection as well as access to quality services influence the way our brains develop, adapt and respond to stress and adversity. These give way to strategies for promotion and prevention across the life course. Optimizing brain health by addressing these determinants not only improves mental and physical health but also creates positive social and economic impacts that contribute to greater well-being and help advance society.
However, conditions affecting the brain and nervous system in general emerge throughout the life course and are characterized by disruptions in brain growth, damage to brain structure and/or impaired brain functioning. These include for example congenital and neurodevelopmental conditions as well as neurological disorders across the life. Health and social care for these conditions require multisectoral and interdisciplinary collaborations with a holistic person-centred approach focused on promotion, prevention, treatment, care and rehabilitation and the active engagement of persons with lived experience, their families and carers.