You’re on your way to drop the kids off at school. Maybe you’re out for a drive with your wife, just to enjoy the day. Or perhaps you forgot you’re out of cereal and decided to make a quick trip to the store when seemingly out of nowhere, your car is struck from behind. Your head slams forward, hitting the steering wheel and you “see stars.” Chances are, that even in this simple car accident, you’ve sustained a head injury — and you’re not sure just how bad it is.
Head and Brain Injuries Are Wide-Ranging and Complex
Even when there are no visible signs of an injury, a head injury can cause an individual to lose brain function. Concussions are a common traumatic brain injury (TBI) after a crash, but there are more complex conditions that victims experience.
Your skull is incredibly strong and difficult to break, but the forces associated with a car accident can cause fractures. While a skull fracture doesn’t always result in a brain injury, penetrating injuries and severe fractures can damage the brain’s delicate tissues.
A hematoma occurs when a blood vessel ruptures and you have internal bleeding. As the blood pools and clots, it causes pressure that can lead to serious brain damage or death. Depending on the hematoma’s size and location, you may need an emergency surgery to reduce this pressure and protect your brain.
“Head and brain injuries are delicate and complicated. If you think you or a loved one is suffering from a TBI, you must address the injury right away.”
Impact and head trauma can cause veins in the brain to tear and bleed. Bleeding can cause a significant amount of swelling in the brain — swelling the brain doesn’t have space to accommodate, putting it at further risk of injury.
Also known as a diffuse axonal injury (DAI), shear injuries affect the nerves in the brain. When fibers in your nerves, called axons, stretch or tear, your brain cannot send and receive messages as effectively. While some DAIs are fatal, many victims survive and face a difficult recovery, which may involve physical and occupational therapy that encourages the brain to “rewire” and adapt.
Signs You’ve Experienced a Head Injury
Unfortunately, many brain injuries go undiagnosed. If you lost consciousness during an accident, experienced a severe headache, or mental confusion, you may have a TBI. Common TBI symptoms include:
- Blacking out at the time of the accident
- Visible cuts, bruising, or skull depressions
- Nausea and vomiting
- Ringing in ears
- Brain fog
- Memory loss
- Sleeping more than usual
- Loss of balance
- Convulsions or seizures
- Slurred speech
- Inability to move or control arms or legs
- Sensory issues, including a bad taste in your mouth and loss of smell
- Mood changes, depression or anxiety
- Problems concentrating
If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms after a car crash, seek immediate medical care.
Did You Suffer Head Trauma in a Wreck? Here’s What to Do Next
Head and brain injuries are delicate and complicated. If you think you or a loved one is suffering from a TBI, you must address the injury right away. Here’s what we recommend victims do if they think they’re suffering from head trauma:
Seek Medical Attention Right Away
You should go to the doctor after a crash, even if you’ve only experienced minor bumps and bruises. If you put off going to Urgent Care or the Emergency Room after the accident, you should go as soon as you experience any of the symptoms listed above.
Rest and Recharge
After you experience head trauma, your doctor may suggest that you take some time to both physically and mentally rest. You’ve been through a lot. However, studies suggest that you shouldn’t take it easy for too long – activity-centered therapy may help you regain brain function and mobility.
Follow Your Doctor’s Orders
Your doctor will give you specific directions depending on the type of head or brain injury you’ve sustained. Concussion care and treatment of a fractured skull can be very different, so be careful to follow these specific directions.
Keep Track of Your Expenses and Symptoms
After a bad crash, you will probably want to file a personal injury claim. It’s in your best interest to document your injuries, and keep track of your medical bills, treatment plans, and any other costs you incur after the accident.
Consider Contacting a Personal Injury Attorney
Accident victims should never suffer because of someone else’s neglect. You deserve justice for your injuries, especially when your head or brain injury leaves your life radically different than before the accident. A personal injury attorney can help you determine the value of your case, make sure your insurance settlement is fair, or take your case to trial.
Andy Citrin Injury Attorneys: We Fight for Alabama Car Accident Victims
At Andy Citrin Injury Attorneys, we understand that head injuries can be expensive to treat and require a long recovery period. When winning your case is your only option, you need to call Andy Citrin Injury Attorneys. We’ll take time to get to know you, evaluate your case for free, and suggest some next steps.
No victim should have questions about how they will pay for their recovery. That’s why we fight hard to make sure our clients take home every penny they deserve. To schedule your free case evaluation, fill out our quick online contact form or call us at 251-888-8888.
Brain recovery: Activity, not rest, may speed recovery after brain injury (2018, September 17). ScienceDaily. Retrieved from https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/09/180917111622.htm
Head trauma: First aid (2018, November 16).. Mayo Clinic. Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/first-aid/first-aid-head-trauma/basics/art-20056626
The content provided here is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject.