Car Accidents and Traumatic Brain Injuries – What You Should Know

If you’ve been in a car accident and have been unable to complete day-to-day activities, you’re not alone. Traumatic brain injuries include any trauma to the head that impairs function, and they are common occurrences after car accidents. However, with the right treatment, you can overcome your symptoms and regain your quality of life. We are here to help you recognize the sign of traumatic brain injuries so you can get the care you need to recover and get back to the things that matter.

Concussion

One of the most common traumatic brain injuries following a car accident is a concussion. You may receive a concussion from a blow to the head, a change in momentum, or when the head is moved rapidly back and forth.

Symptoms may include

  • Loss of consciousness
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Confusion
  • Mood changes
  • Loss of appetite
  • Sleep issues

While symptoms may range from mild to severe, concussions are generally not life-threatening, though they may disrupt your day-to-day activities. However, with professional care, you can make a full recovery and return to your normal quality of life.

Diffuse Axonal

A diffuse axonal injury occurs when the head turns further than it should. The overextended motion can damage structures in the brain, and the effect can be comparable to a severe concussion. If you suspect you have a diffuse axonal injury, you may be experiencing

  • Migraines
  • Memory loss
  • Seizures
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Loss of Consciousness

While symptoms tend to be more severe, you can regain your function and recover from your injury with proper care and rehabilitation after your car accident.

Contusion

Contusions are another name for bruises you can receive anywhere on your body, but when referring to traumatic brain injuries, a contusion is a bruise on your brain. When you have bruises on both sides of the brain, it is also known as a coup-contrecoup. If you suspect you may have a contusion, you may be struggling with symptoms such as

  • Headaches
  • Bleeding or swelling in the brain
  • Blood Clots
  • Difficulties with remembering or thinking
  • Nausea
  • Fatigue

Oftentimes, you can improve these symptoms with treatment and physical therapy. In some severe cases, you may require surgery, but physical therapy can also help you prepare and recover before and after.

Acquired Brain Injuries

Sometimes traumatic brain injuries do not require an injury to the head to occur. Traumatic brain injuries may be acquired through other injuries. For example, if you have lung or heart damage from your car accident, that may decrease the amount of blood or air that flows to the brain. This may cause damage to your brain. If you’ve been injured in a car accident and are experiencing symptoms of a traumatic brain injury, seek medical care even if you haven’t received any trauma to your head.
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Whiplash

One of the most common car accident injuries that can cause damage to your brain is whiplash. This injury occurs when the head is jerked rapidly back and forth, damaging the soft tissue in the neck. Most cases are mild and may resolve themselves, but if you have severe whiplash, it could result in a traumatic brain injury. If you have neck pain, difficulty moving your neck, shoulder pain, changes in vision, or headaches, seek treatment.

What You Should Do If You Notice Symptoms

If you are experiencing any traumatic brain injury symptoms, then you should seek medical care as soon as you can. The earlier you seek treatment the better. It can relieve your symptoms now and prevent chronic pain or disability in the future. For your care, you may see a medical professional to check for traumatic brain injuries, and a physical therapist to help you recover fully.

A Better Quality of Life

At Essential Chirocare and Physical Therapy, we have experience and expertise in treating traumatic brain injuries. We of the care you need to help you recover and the tools you need to return to a better quality of life. Learn more about our Physical Therapy Services and how they can help you recover from your traumatic brain injury. Together, we can work with you to move forward and move better.

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