Head injuries caused by car accidents can have long-lasting effects. These effects may not be immediately apparent. Concussions and traumatic brain injuries are common injuries in severe accidents. Treatments may be lengthy and expensive. If an insurance company is reluctant to pay, a car accident attorney can pursue lost wages and medical payments.
Traumatic Brain Injuries and Concussions
Open head injuries (where the skull is fractured) produce a visible, severe head injury. Closed head injuries (where the skull in intact) were considered less dangerous in the past. Today’s modern technology has proven that closed head injuries can be as traumatic or even more so than open head injuries.
Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) occur when a sudden trauma interrupts the normal function of the brain. Car accidents, falls, and sports injuries all cause TBIs. These injuries may seem minor initially, with minimal symptoms. TBIs are known as invisible injuries. It is important to seek proper medical attention if a TBI is suspected.
Concussions are considered to be mild traumatic brain injuries. Concussions are graded on a three-point scale. Grade I concussion are mild, grade II are moderate, and grade III are severe. Grade III concussions can linger for months or years after an accident. Being knocked unconscious is not a prerequisite for a grade III concussion. If the condition is undiagnosed, symptoms can worsen and cause a longer healing time.
Symptoms That May Be Present
Symptoms of a concussion include:
- Nausea and dizziness
- Slurred speech
- Anxiety and depression
Concussion symptoms can linger for months and even years after an accident. Most of the brain’s healing takes place in the first six months after an accident, but healing can continue for up to two years.
Treatment After Diagnosis
Several factors affect how quickly someone can recover from a mild traumatic brain injury. These include how severe the concussion was and what kind of therapy they receive after the injury. Getting lots of sleep is imperative. Resting during the day is also helpful.
Physical activities that are demanding should be avoided, including all contact sports. Consult with trusted family or friends before making important decisions. Return to normal activities gradually, with the approval of a health care professional.