A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is common in accidents involving blunt force trauma to the head or rapid shaking of the head or body. Although many people heal with adequate medical care, some suffer long-term issues.
The physical and mental limitations that can result from a TBI can be debilitating. Some patients might never regain mobility or normal cognitive functioning. Long-term care might be necessary to assist victims of permanent damage with everyday tasks.
Understanding the Effects of a TBI
A TBI varies in severity. Some are minor, causing minimal memory, thought, and motor skill issues. Others are more severe, leading to significant mental deficits and impaired physical abilities.
Even a mild TBI might require consistent medical attention so a doctor can monitor symptoms. What starts as a seemingly minor injury can become a severe condition that progressively worsens and causes additional problems.
Reducing activity after an accident is crucial to give the brain a chance to rest. Physicians often recommend reduced physical and mental activity, so the brain can slowly heal and return to normal. However, the consequences of a moderate to severe TBI can be long-lasting.
Recovering from a Severe TBI
It can take years for a severe brain injury to heal. It might require ongoing rehabilitative services. Although some people never fully recover from the damage, improving thought processes, movement, and other symptoms is possible over time.
During the healing process, someone with a severe TBI might experience symptoms such as:
- Frustration or agitation
- Difficulty sleeping
- Trouble remembering things
It can be a long and frustrating road to recovery with progress and setbacks. Some people appear to get better but suddenly experience new or worsening symptoms. The hardest part for most TBI victims is waiting. While some symptoms might disappear within a few days or weeks, others can take longer to resolve. Resuming normal activities typically doesn’t occur until months or even years later.
Emergency Medical Care After an Accident
A doctor must address trauma to the head or brain immediately after an accident. A moderate to severe TBI can be life-threatening or fatal without prompt and adequate treatment.
A doctor must assess the damage to determine how to proceed with treatment. Imaging tests are crucial to pinpoint the injury site and look for signs of underlying issues such as a brain bleed, swelling, or tissue or nerve damage.
In the initial stages, treating a TBI might include:
- Rest and monitoring symptoms
- Over-the-counter and prescription drugs to reduce inflammation, alleviate pain, and prevent infection
- Physical therapy
- CT and MRI scans
Rehabilitation for Permanent or Long-Term Injuries
Starting rehabilitation after a TBI is common. It is often the treatment someone needs to relearn how to walk, talk, and perform other routine tasks. Rehab can begin in the hospital during the initial visit and continue as an outpatient service or at another facility.
Rehabilitative services might include:
- Physical therapy
- Speech and language therapy
- Occupational therapy
- Vocational or recreational therapy
- Appointments with a psychologist or psychiatrist to cope with the injury
- Sessions with a social worker
If independent living isn’t possible, moving into a long-term care facility can give a TBI patient the daily treatment and assistance they need.
Get Help with Your Brain Injury Claim
The Johnson Injury Firm has more than 125 years of collective experience handling injury claims for accident victims. We understand the struggles of recovering from a TBI. The last thing you want to do is prepare a case against the person responsible for the accident. We can take over and complete every step on your behalf so you can focus on healing.
Call us right now at (804) 262-9000 for a free consultation if someone else’s negligence caused your TBI in an accident in Richmond, VA.