Traumatic Brain Injuries Must Be Taken Seriously

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that traumatic brain injuries (TBI) cause 2.8 million ER visits, deaths, and hospitalizations each year. This is a staggering statistic when you consider how serious TBIs are.

According to the Mayo Clinic, “Mild traumatic brain injury may affect your brain cells temporarily. More-serious traumatic brain injury can result in bruising, torn tissues, bleeding and other physical damage to the brain. These injuries can result in long-term complications or death.”

At the Sherman Law Firm, we encourage all of our personal injury clients to learn to recognize the symptoms of TBI because they are so common and so serious, and do not always occur immediately after an accident. To once again quote the Mayo Clinic, “traumatic brain injury can have wide-ranging physical and psychological effects. Some signs or symptoms may appear immediately after the traumatic event, while others may appear days or weeks later.”

The signs and symptoms of mild traumatic brain injury may include:

  • Headache
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Feeling dazed, confused or disoriented
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Fatigue or drowsiness
  • Problems with speech
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Sleeping more than usual
  • Dizziness or loss of balance
  • Sensory problems, such as blurred vision, ringing in the ears, a bad taste in the mouth or changes in the ability to smell
  • Sensitivity to light or sound
  • Memory or concentration problems
  • Mood changes or mood swings
  • Feeling depressed or anxious

Moderate to severe TBIs may also cause:

  • Convulsions or seizures
  • Dilation of one or both pupils of the eyes
  • Clear fluids draining from the nose or ears
  • Inability to awaken from sleep
  • Weakness or numbness in fingers and toes
  • Loss of coordination
  • Profound confusion
  • Agitation, combativeness or other unusual behavior
  • Slurred speech
  • Coma and other disorders of consciousness

Infants and young children who are not able to tell you how they are feeling may show their illness in other ways:

  • Change in eating or nursing habits
  • Unusual or easy irritability
  • Persistent crying and inability to be consoled
  • Change in ability to pay attention
  • Change in sleep habits
  • Seizures
  • Sad or depressed mood
  • Drowsiness
  • Loss of interest in favorite toys or activities

It is critical to recognize these symptoms because an undiagnosed TBI will only cause more problems over time. Even “mild” TBIs should be taken very seriously and treated with care by an experienced physician. While people who got concussions used to just “walk it off” we now know that is a very dangerous attitude, and could result in serious long-term damage to the brain.

Unfortunately, many of our firm’s personal injury clients have suffered a TBI. Slip and fall accidents and car accidents are common causes of TBIs because they result in a violent blow or jolt to the head or neck. Anyone who is injured in a slip and fall accident or a car accident should be screened for TBIs.

If you or someone you love has suffered a TBI, and you are struggling to get treatment, or even have your injury be taken seriously, the Sherman Law Firm is here to help. Please contact our office in Houston to schedule a free initial consultation.