None of us wants to think about being the victim of a car crash and suffering a serious injury. However, head injuries are common, especially traumatic brain injuries, and it is a good idea to know what to look for.
A common occurrence
We have come to associate head injuries like concussions and TBI with sports; football, in particular. However, most traumatic brain injuries are sustained during vehicle crashes and falls. According to data compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, of the 2 million cases of TBI reported each year in the U.S., traffic accidents are responsible for 14.3 percent. Another 40.5 percent is attributed to falls.
Two types of TBI
There are two types of traumatic brain injuries: open and closed. In the open form, an object penetrates the skull and enters the brain. The closed type of head injury is more common, being caused by a blow to the head. For example, the victim of a rear-end collision may strike her head on the steering wheel during impact, even if the collision occurs at a low speed.
A delay in symptoms
In many cases, a closed TBI is not immediately apparent. The victim may feel shaky and perhaps a bit dizzy after a collision, but symptoms of a head injury may not show up for hours or even days. Some of the symptoms to look for include:
- Fatigue or drowsiness
- Feeling disoriented or confused
- Blurred vision
- Ringing in the ears
- Sensitivity to light or noise
- Concentration or memory problems
- Depression or anxiety
Obtaining medical help
Following any kind of vehicle accident, it is always a good idea to seek medical care, even if you feel fine. There could be an underlying condition such as a TBI. Obviously, a prompt diagnosis is vital for your wellbeing. However, remember that when you file a claim for compensation to cover your medical bills, lost wages and more, the insurance company will carefully review a medical report. An injury like TBI can be rather costly. You must be sure that the insurance company has proof that the car accident was the direct cause of your injuries.