Our brains play an important role in our
behaviour, feelings, and understanding of the world.
If the brain becomes damaged, people may experience the same
symptoms as people with mental illness, dementia, or learning
disability. As a result, they are often subject to the same laws,
such as the Mental Health Act and the Adults with Incapacity
Acquired Brain Injury
Acquired brain injury can occur as a result of a trauma, such as
an accident, or after certain illnesses, such as a brain tumour or
For more information on the effects of acquired brain injury and
options for rehabilitation and support, visit the Headway website.
Alcohol-Related Brain Damage (ARBD)
Harmful use of alcohol and dependence on alcohol are common.
These are not "mental disorders" under the law in Scotland and do
not come directly within our remit. But some people suffer brain
damage from harmful alcohol use.
Damage can have several causes, including direct damage from
alcohol, vitamin deficiency, and head trauma. These can affect
memory, judgement, and behaviour. Over a long period of time, heavy
drinkers may develop various types of brain damage.
To find out more about the symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment of
ARBD, visit the Alzheimer Society's website.