A car accident can cause much more damage to drivers and passengers than the initial, visible physical effects seen by the police. Aside from broken bones and bleeding, many car crash victims suffer from traumatic brain injury, which can occur when a blow to the head, or jolt, forces the soft brain tissues against the hard inside of the skull. This can cause bleeding, the tearing of nerve fibers, or brain damage.
The symptoms of traumatic brain injury can vary from case to case, depending on the nature and severity of the blow or shaking, but the Mayo Clinic has listed some common symptoms of mild traumatic brain injury as:
A brief period of unconsciousness
Amnesia for events immediately before and after the injury
Dizziness or loss of balance
Sensory problems, such as blurred vision, ringing in the ears or a bad taste in the mouth
Memory or concentration problems
For more severe cases of TBI, the symptoms are also more severe, including:
- Repeated vomiting or nausea
- Convulsions or seizures
- Inability to awaken from sleep
- Dilation of one or both pupils of the eyes
- Slurred speech
- Weakness or numbness in the extremities
- Loss of coordination
- Profound confusion
- Agitation, combativeness
TBI can be deadly if left untreated, which is why it is always important to seek medical treatment as soon as possible after you suffer any sort of blow to the head. Even if you have seen a doctor and they have determined that you do not have TBI, you should be sure to monitor your symptoms as time progresses, since microscopic tears in brain tissue can often develop into more severe conditions, and can often be missed in an initial examination.
Also, make sure that you are also conscious of the health of your friends and family members, since many people are too embarassed to seek medical treatment for a head injury after they’ve already been examined once. TBI is a serious condition, and no one should let shame or a lack of information stand in the way of their health.