Important facts about traumatic brain injury

Brain injuries are common with deadly effects. According to the Center for Disease Control, traumatic brain injury contributes to roughly 30 percent of all injury-related deaths. A TBI is caused by external trauma and can range from mild concussions to severe disabilities.

People with TBI often experience impaired cognitive functions, physical movement and emotional functioning. To determine if you or a loved one may have a TBI, learn more about the causes, symptoms and facts about TBI.

What causes TBI?

Individuals get TBI in a variety of different situations. Here are the top four leading causes according to the CDC:

  1. Falling
  2. Unintentional blunt trauma
  3. Motor vehicle accidents
  4. Physical assault

It should be noted that different causes commonly lead to different consequences. For example, while motor vehicle accidents account for only 14 percent of TBIs, it is the next most common cause of TBI-related deaths after falling.

What are the symptoms?

Sometimes TBI symptoms are only present when the injury occurs while others may last for years, even leading to permanent disabilities. Symptoms deal with changes in mood, memory, physical abilities and sleep patterns:

  • Difficulty concentrating and/or unable to collect thoughts
  • Trouble retaining new information
  • Persistent headaches
  • Dizziness and/or balance problems
  • Fatigue and/or sleeping more or less than usual
  • Extreme emotions

Some symptoms, such as dizziness, may be immediately present upon injury. Others, such as difficulty concentrating, may not appear or be noticeable until much later. Family members, doctors or even victims themselves often dismiss these problems.

What should I do?

If you suspect you have TBI, it is important to seek medical diagnosis, treatment and advice. A medical evaluation is an important step to know the severity of the harm you have suffered.

Depending on the circumstances of your injury, you may be able to take legal action. Most brain injuries caused by intentional assault, motor vehicle accidents and falls are categorized under the personal injury umbrella.

Symptoms of TBI can be subtle and delayed. Changes in memory, emotion, concentration and behavior may appear over time and therefore may not be recognized as direct symptoms by the victim. It is possible for TBI to be overlooked and misdiagnosed as well. Whatever the case may be, you should seek the help you deserve to receive compensation for your injury. Consulting a personal injury attorney can help you gather evidence about your accident and be aware of your protections and options. Suffering from TBI is not something that should be ignored or pushed aside, especially because it can have permanently disabling effects.