Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) occur when the brain suffers damage in some manner. These injuries often take place when an individual sustains a concussion. In other instances, an object penetrates the head into the skull, producing another type of dangerous TBI.
Approximately 2.8 million U.S. residents suffer a traumatic brain injury each year. The most severe TBIs can cause permanent disability or death.
Are “mild” TBIs actually traumatic?
If you suffer a concussion, your doctor may refer to that as a “mild traumatic brain injury.” The truth is, a mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) does not necessarily equate to mild symptoms. It is simply a term to differentiate between these symptoms and the even more severe symptoms from moderate and severe TBIs.
Mild TBIs are dangerous, and can produce long-lasting, debilitating symptoms such as difficulties with concentration, memory, balance, sleep, mood, and recurring head pain. If left undiagnosed and untreated, mTBIs can also cause reduction of the individual’s motor skills, other cognitive functions, and sensory capabilities. In some cases, a person’s personality may change, as well.
Common causes of traumatic brain injury
Almost any strike or blow to the head can lead to a brain injury of some kind, though not all of them do. What is important to know is that even a bump or blow that appears to be minor can actually lead to serious problems. The most common causes of traumatic brain injury include:
- Sports. These injuries often occur in contact sports such as football and boxing, but soccer players and baseball/softball players are also at risk. Non-traditional sports, such as skateboarding, and professional cyclists and equestrians also sustain brain injuries fairly often, making proper helmets and safety equipment essential (though these athletes are most affected by the second cause on this list).
- Falls. Slip and fall accidents can cause an individual to impact the floor, an object, or a wall at sufficient speed to produce a traumatic brain injury. Improperly maintained or repaired balconies, railings, and stairs can lead to severe and even deadly TBIs. For this reason, it is incumbent upon property owners to maintain their property, removing or fixing all present safety issues they are aware of or should be aware of on the property. When property owners fail to properly maintain their premises and someone sustains a TBI as a result, they can be held legally responsible in a premises liability lawsuit.
- Car wrecks. When a car crash occurs, the impact can cause one or more individuals in the vehicle to sustain a serious brain injury through direct contact with an object. However, drivers or passengers can also suffer a brain injury in these accidents without a physical blow to the head. Upon impact, the violent whipping action of the head and neck that occurs can force the brain to collide with the inside of the skull, causing bruising or injury to brain tissue.
- Explosions. Construction and demolition workers face the greatest risks of explosions on the job. However, any individual close enough to an explosion can sustain a TBI, even if he or she isn’t hit by a specific object. The force of the explosion could be enough to rattle the brain – or to knock a person to the ground.
Traumatic brain injuries can lead to temporary or permanent damage. If you have sustained a TBI through the negligent actions of another person, the experienced Huntsville traumatic brain injury attorneys at Martin & Helms can take action on your behalf. We can help you pursue the financial recovery to which you are entitled for the losses stemming from your injury. To schedule a free case evaluation, give us a call today at 256.539.1990 or use our contact form.