UNDERSTANDING HOW BRAIN INJURIES HAPPEN IN CAR ACCIDENTS
Even though traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) resulting from playing contact sports garner a lot more attention, those resulting from falls and car crashes are much more common. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) statistics show that, of the 2 million Americans that suffer TBIs each year, 40.5 percent are associated with falls, whereas 14.3 percent as related to motor vehicle crashes.
As if some 286,000 TBIs per year was not staggering enough, this number may fail to capture the true essence of how big of an epidemic this most serious type of brain injury has become. This is because it is thought that, in many cases, TBI symptoms go undetected for period of time immediately following an accident.
When it comes to TBIs, there are two types, which refer to the different ways they can occur. The open variety has to do with some type of penetration, like a foreign object puncturing the skull and becoming lodged in the brain. As for the closed variety of injury, it is most often caused by an individual either receiving a blow to his or her head or by bumping it in some way.
As for the most predominate type of brain injury suffered in car accidents, closed head injuries are most common. They most commonly happen when a driver or passenger’s head comes in contact with the windshield, steering wheel or dashboard.
Even in the case of a low-speed fender bender, car occupants can suffer TBIs. In these cases, the immediate symptoms of a a TBI may not be readily obvious and they may be clearer as time progresses. In situations like this, it may only become clear that a TBI occurred once the individual begins suffering long-term cognitive disabilities and memory difficulties. Kids are more susceptible to the ill-effects of TBIs than adults are.
As for some preliminary symptoms of TBIs to be on the lookout for, a loss of consciousness, headaches, increased drowsiness, a lack of balance and disorientation are seen as some of earliest signs one has been suffered. Increased sensitivity to light or sound, irritability or depression and blurred vision are commonly seen in patients as well.
If you suspect you might have suffered a TBI as a result of having been involved in a car crash, a Bowling Green, Kentucky, motor vehicle collision attorney can provide advice and guidance in your legal matter.
Source: bisociety.org, “Car accidents and traumatic brain injury,” Jacob Masters, accessed March 29, 2017