Concussion Collection Media Mentions
"Traumatic brain injury survivor Jessie Riley is the founder of Kitanie Books, a large collection of paperbacks designed for kids and adults. Coloring, according to Riley, isn’t just a way to relax, but a proven method of healing after a concussion. Coloring, she learned during her own recovery, is an approved activity during the brain-rest phase after a concussion — and it can actually help rebuild visual-spatial and organization skills. Each of Kitanie’s books features a story and a message, too. This book’s theme is hope, specifically geared toward anyone struggling with an invisible illness."
(Clifton Park Neighbors)
In the weeks following a concussion, doctors teach patients about brain rest. This entails no computer use, social media, video games, text messages, and even reading. In the digital age, brain rest can be difficult for tweens, teens and young adults as they may find it boring in relation to their usual highly stimulating everyday activities. However, one activity this group of adolescents finds entertaining that is not banned, is coloring..."
(Teach Believe Inspire Award, Brain Injury Law Center)
"The January Teach Believe Inspire Award goes to Jessie Riley, an inspiration to the TBI community.
For Jessie, coloring allowed her brain to regain strength in coordinating eye movement and visual tracking, without causing further energy imbalance in her brain. Over eleven weeks of therapy, she consistently worked on her coloring, choosing hues like blue and green, which offered a calming influence that gave her brain the perfect medium for healing..."
(Tampa Bay Parenting)
"Kitanie Coloring Books are not your typical coloring books - think of them as "the evolution of the coloring book." Each coloring book has an uplifting theme and is perfect for adults and kids alike!
"Coloring books become a mindful alternative to excessive screen time and the digital eye strain that accompanies it. Riley promotes her coloring books as a form of visual therapy that helped re-wire her brain after experiencing a sports-related concussion..."
Parenting and coloring: Inside the lines - outside the lines?
(TWC National TV News)
Kitanie Books was featured nationally on TWC News. The two part weekend segment ran twice and highlighted how coloring can help during concussion healing and recovery.
(City Parent Magazine, Canada)
"Coloring has scientifically proven health benefits by helping to build visualization and figure ground processing skills and can stimulate healing for brain injury and concussion patients. Suitable for all ages."
(350+ media outlets featured this story)
New Kitanie Coloring Book Brings Hope to Brain Injury and Concussion Patients
"Jessie Riley, owner of Kitanie Coloring Books, discovered through her own concussion recovery that coloring rebuilds visual spatial and organization skills, which can be disrupted from a concussion. She has published coloring books to bring hope and recovery to brain injury patients..."
Jessie Riley Creates Kitanie Coloring Books to Stimulate Healing For Brain Injury and Concussion Patients
Saratoga Springs, New York - A brain injury can be temporary or permanent. According to the Centers for Disease Control, approximately 1.7 million people each year in the US incur a brain injury. Having a concussion and being diagnosed with post concussion syndrome are considered "invisible illnesses," because there are no outward signs that anything is wrong with the body.
Millions of people around the world have invisible illnesses and Jessie Riley, owner of Kitanie Books, is one of them. "I got my first concussion 15 years ago in a short-track speedskating crash, and another one this past summer." Riley continues, "For the longest time, I had unexplained visual symptoms and dizziness. When my concussion doctor referred me to a Behavioral Optometrist, I discovered, ironically, that coloring was a key to my recovery.”
Dr. Howard Kushner, a Behavioral Optometrist specializing in vision therapy, understood Riley’s common, yet mostly misdiagnosed, symptoms. "Concussions interfere with the ability to process specific information in a complex array, called figure ground processing," says Dr. Kushner. "For example, many patients with concussions cannot walk in a supermarket. They become completely overwhelmed because they cannot make sense of all the visual information. Coloring helps to rehabilitate this skill because it specifically requires the individual to make sense of the complex visual information on the page."
In the weeks following a concussion, doctors teach patients about brain rest. This usually means no computer use, no social media, no video games, no text messages, and not even reading. In this digital age, brain rest can get extremely boring, especially for tweens, teens and young adults. However, one activity that is not banned is coloring.
Dr. Robert Nielson, Riley’s medical doctor and a leading concussion specialist in New York, explains the current medical consensus regarding post-concussion activity. “We’re leaning toward getting concussed patients more involved in active rehabilitation after the initial 5-7 days post injury without causing further energy imbalance in the brain. Since so much of the brain's energy is involved in eye movement and tracking, coloring is an excellent activity in stimulating the healing of brain pathways.”
In the months following Riley’s concussion, her company Kitanie Books published coloring books that help build visualization and figure ground processing skills to help with concussion recovery including "One Big Gigantic Herd of Invisible Cosmic Zebras Coloring Book." The coloring book retails for $10.95 and can be found through most online bookstores worldwide including Amazon.com and Barnesandnoble.com or on the Kitanie Books website.
"Spending the last couple of months coloring, as part of my 11-week vision therapy homework, has helped me to get my brain, and my life, back," says Riley. "I knew that discovering this would be life-changing for me and now I wish for everyone who has ever had a concussion, or whoever gets a concussion in the future, to know there are solutions to heal their symptoms and there is hope."