RECOVERING FROM A SEVERE TRAUMATIC BRAIN INJURY : WHAT TO EXPECT
Let’s say that you are involved in a collision while driving, which caused you to hit your head hard on the dashboard and window. As a result of the trauma, you have been knocked unconscious and your brain has started to bleed. Once you have been transported to the nearest hospital, you are diagnosed with a serious traumatic brain injury (TBI). Although you may be able to recover from this type of serious injury, there are many issues you have to overcome first.
EFFECTS OF TBI ARE WIDE AND VARIED
When you suffer a traumatic brain injury, there are dozens of potential symptoms. The first few weeks following the injury are vital to your recovery. During that time, the brain bleeds, swells and changes. Sometimes, the brain’s chemistry changes as a result of the injuries. These changes all affect healthy brain tissues as well as those already injured in the crash.
It’s fairly common for persons suffering TBIs to be placed into a comatose state or to be in a comatose state naturally following an accident. During this time, you may be unconscious and unable to respond to stimuli. Once you have reached a vegetative state, you will begin to recognize sounds and stimulation again. The minimally conscious state follows this, during which you will be partially conscious.
Once you have awoken from those states, it’s normal to suffer from disorientation and confusion. Depending on the part of the brain that suffered an injury, you may struggle with your memory, speech or cognition. It’s normal to find that your personality has changed. You may now feel anxious, depressed, frustrated or aggressive for no apparent reason.
It’s normal to suffer from some of these inconsistent behaviors. As your brain heals, you may find that you have fewer days where your moods are in a constant flux. Over time, you should find that you are seeing some improvement. Usually, you’ll see the most improvement within six months. That doesn’t mean you can’t still continue to improve, but your improvement progress may slow down considerably. After two years have passed, it is much less common to see major improvements, but you may continue to improve gradually.
COMPENSATION MAY BE AVAILABLE
In the long term, a brain injury can affect you, your family, your friends, your work and other parts of your life. You may no longer be able to work the job you had in the past, or you may struggle to participate in the things you love to do. Unfortunately, more serious cases of TBIs can cause you to no longer be able to work or to require long-term medical care, which can be financially ruinous.
However, if the collision was caused by the negligence of another driver, an attorney can help make sure you get the compensation you need to pay for your medical bills, loss of wages and other losses caused by the collision, so you can focus on your recovery and long-term changes in your life.