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Three General Categories of Brain Injury Symptoms

Minnesota Brain Injury Lawyers & Attorneys

Suffering a brain injury is always a serious matter. Even a mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) can lead to persistent symptoms that impair people’s health and diminish their quality of life.

According to a fact sheet from the CDC, roughly 1.7 million people suffer a TBI each year in the US, with TBIs playing a role in close to a third of all deaths stemming from injury. The way an individual responds to a TBI depends on a number of factors, including the severity of the injury, the parts of the brain affected, and the speed with which medical treatment was administered. There are both short-term and long-term symptoms, and it isn’t always easy to predict how the TBI will affect someone in the long-run.

The following are three general categories of symptoms that crop up after a TBI.

Physical symptoms

Although TBIs don’t have to involve any noticeable loss of consciousness, it’s often a symptom, sometimes lasting for seconds, other times for minutes, hours, or days.

Other physical symptoms include headaches, nausea, and dizziness. Vision problems may arise, including blurred vision, involuntary eye movements, a strong sensitivity to light, and/or a loss of vision (partial or total). Ringing in the ears and a decreased ability to smell or taste things are among the other possible sensory problems.

An individual who has suffered a TBI may experience disturbances in sleep, including the inclination to sleep much more than usual, or a difficulty with falling asleep. Unusual fatigue or drowsiness are other possibilities.

Especially in moderate-to-severe cases, people may experience some form of numbness or paralysis. Their movements may become uncoordinated. They may also suffer from a seizure or convulsion.

This isn’t a comprehensive account of all possible symptoms. Even so, you can begin to develop a general idea of the physical toll of a TBI, especially when the symptoms persist over longer periods of time.

Cognitive symptoms

Disorientation and confusion are common symptoms following a TBI, even a relatively mild one. Furthermore, people who have suffered a TBI may experience difficulty focusing and paying attention to things.

Memory is another cognitive area that may be negatively affected. Short-term memory is especially susceptible to problems. People who have suffered a TBI may also have difficulty retaining new information or, particularly in more severe cases, forming new memories.

Speech is another area of cognition that may become adversely impacted by a TBI. And, in general, individuals may develop problems with executive function – for instance, they may have a more difficult time making plans or following instructions.

Emotional and psychological symptoms

After a TBI, people may act in uncharacteristic ways and experience emotional volatility, including mood swings and deep irritability. Maybe they become more aggressive than they used to be, or they suddenly lose motivation or interest in things. Depression and anxiety may develop after a TBI, or become worse if they were already existing conditions.

These changes can come about from the injury itself. They can also arise from the struggles people face as they try to cope with the injury and its effect on their lives. If they’re suffering persistent symptoms, or if their life has changed significantly (e.g. they can no longer walk or drive, or they’ve had to leave their job or withdraw from school), the psychological toll can be severe.

The need for legal assistance

TBIs occur in a variety of circumstances, ranging from car accidents to sports injuries. A reputable and experienced attorney will help you review the circumstances surrounding the injury and fight for fair compensation, so that you can receive high-quality care and better cope with your symptoms. Don’t hesitate to contact us to discuss your situation and receive our dedicated support.