Approximately one million people are treated and discharged annually for brain injuries in the US. Of these, over 50,000 die every year, and thousands of others suffer long-term disabilities.
Brain injuries are also referred to as traumatic brain injuries and are caused by a blow to the head, back-and-forth jerking of the head, and penetration injury, such as a gunshot injury.
When there is no apparent injury, such as a gunshot wound, some signs of traumatic brain injuries (TBI) may be challenging to identify or differentiate from other types of injuries.
Signs of a Brain Injury
1. Persistent Headache
Often a slight headache may not be much of a concern in an accident, and most people tend to ignore or miss it. Unfortunately, a slight headache may signify a much bigger problem, like a TBI, which worsens with time.
If you start with a mild headache at the accident scene, which then progresses into full-blown migraine headaches, you may have suffered a TBI and should see a doctor immediately.
2. You Feel Disoriented, Dizzy, or Unsteady On Your Feet
Dizziness can be caused by several factors, including dehydration, inner ear infections, medication, low blood sugar, standing up too quickly, or engaging in an activity that involves spinning around.
If you experience severe or persistent dizziness after you have been in an accident where you were hit on the head, it is important to see an ER doctor to rule out the chances of a brain injury.
3. You Lose Consciousness for Even a Brief Moment
People passing out can happen for many reasons, such as fainting, hyperextension, stroke, and heart attack, among others. If passing out occurs after an accident, there is a high chance that it could be a result of a blow to the head and, consequently, a brain injury.
You don’t have to be out for an extended period if you have suffered a brain injury. It could only be a matter of seconds. Sometimes you could wake up and feel perfectly normal. But it would be best if you don’t dismiss the passing out until the doctor rules out a brain injury.
4. Difficulty Speaking and Hearing Issues
The brain is the engine that runs all the body functions that you may take for granted, like speaking, listening, and comprehension. When the brain is impacted, some of these functions can disappear.
The most notable loss of function after a brain injury is difficulty speaking or understanding others. You know what to say, but the words can’t get from your head to your mouth, which can be scary and frustrating. Fortunately, the right and timely treatment can help reverse the effects.
You could also experience changes in your hearing or feel a persistent ringing noise in your ears, also known as tinnitus. Many things can cause this after an accident, such as the loud noise at impact, but it could also be a sign of a brain injury. If you have persistent ringing in your ears after an accident, it’s best to see an ER doctor to rule out a brain injury.
Contacting a Specialist Brain Injury Lawyer: You May Be Entitled to Compensation
Brain injuries can occur in many types of accidents. If the accident is due to the negligence of another party, you may be eligible to recover compensation. However, recovering compensation will require you to file a claim against the liable party, which is usually not a simple process.
Your best chance at recovering the damage you deserve is to involve a specialist brain injury lawyer in your case. Besides helping you get all the necessary evidence to build a strong case, your lawyer will help with the negotiations, command respect from the opposing side, and even represent you at trial if your claim is not settled.
An injury to the brain should be given serious and timely attention because they deteriorate with time. Luckily with the right intervention, most TBIs will resolve without damaging the brain permanently.