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Traumatic brain injuries from car accidents can be debilitating

Most people who drive understand that motor vehicle collisions can prove life-altering. There are many difficulties after a serious car crash, such as paying for medical bills, missing work due to an injury and suffering physical pain while you recover. Sometimes, that means people who don't have immediately apparent injuries, like broken bones, feel grateful to walk away from an accident.

Sadly, some of the most serious injuries commonly associated with collisions have symptoms that develop over time. Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) may not be obvious in the immediate aftermath of a crash, but they can still result in temporary or even permanent disability.

TBIs can result from a number of different traumas

When you think of head injuries in car accidents, you probably imagine someone's head striking a window or perhaps the steering wheel. These kinds of blunt force trauma can and do cause TBIs in some collisions. Similarly, someone thrown from a vehicle could very likely sustain serious head injuries as a result. It's important to understand, however, that this is not the only way for someone to sustain a TBI in an accident.

Intense shaking can also result in a TBI. A victim whose vehicle rolls over, for example, could never directly strike anything but still suffer substantial brain injuries from the intense motion associated with the crash. Penetrating injuries can also cause TBIs. These occur when fast-moving objects, such as pieces of the vehicle or broken glass, cut into the skull or head.

TBIs can prevent someone from ever returning to work

The brain controls everything about an individual person. Damage to the brain can impact anything from memory to motor function, depending on the location and severity of the injury. Common symptoms or issues associated with TBIs include impaired short-term memory, changes in mood or personality, issues with motor control or balance, and many more.

Some of these symptoms may present immediately after an accident, while others can take some time to develop. The skull, which is strong to protect the brain, can damage the brain if there's swelling and no space to alleviate it. The same is true for bruising or bleeding of the brain. Damage can worsen over time, especially if the individual has not received an adequate medical exam following the head trauma that caused the TBI.

The good news is that medical intervention can reduce or eliminate some of these symptoms, while physical therapy can help those with TBIs regain functions lost to the injury. For some people, however, returning to their previous occupation is simply an impossibility. These individuals may require ongoing medical treatment or even support for daily life functions, like self-care. Family aid or even outside professional help may be necessary.

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