Car accidents and brain injuries

One frequent consequence of motor vehicle accidents is an injury to the brain. Traumatic brain injuries occur when there is a jolt or blow to the head that damages brain function. 

For some victims who suffer from a TBI, the symptoms are mild and go away after a short amount of time. For others, there are life-long consequences. 

Physical symptoms of brain injury

The Mayo Clinic reports that some of the symptoms of a mild TBI include headache, brief loss of consciousness, nausea, sleeping difficulties, dizziness and fatigue. 

The symptoms associated with moderate and severe TBIs include: 

  • Loss of consciousness for longer periods of time 
  • Repeated vomiting 
  • Seizures 
  • Numbness and weakness in toes and fingers 
  • Fluid drainage from ears or nose 
  • Constant or worsening headache 

Even mild brain injury can have lasting consequences, so a car accident victim should always seek medical treatment if there was a jolt to the head during the crash. 

Delayed and long-term TBI results 

According to Psychology Today, dysfunction caused by TBIs can take time to appear. Long-term results often manifest gradually and show up months or even years after the initial injury. One of the reasons medical professionals may not diagnose a brain injury right away is because most TBIs are not detectable with a CT or MRI scan. 

Over time, brain injuries can cause decreases in mood regulation, cognitive function, sensory function, energy and the ability to filter stimuli. This can lead to decreases in relational, academic and occupational function. Some examples of long-term injury include Parkinson’s-like symptoms and the inability to recognize danger signals.