Traumatic Brain Injury Frequently Asked Questions (Part One)

Traumatic brain injuries can change the life of you or a loved one for life - and unlike a broken arm, they can be hard to diagnose and difficult to prove. Below are the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI).

What is considered a traumatic brain injury?

Traumatic brain injuries encompass a vast range of damage and can look vastly different in different brain injury victims. In general, TBI occurs when some outside trauma takes place to the head, damaging the brain. Some suffers may not even lose consciousness during their traumatic brain injury, while other could die immediately from their injuries.

What are the symptoms of traumatic brain injury?

Again, traumatic brain injuries can display a huge range of symptoms, ranging from mild memory problems to severe, permanent paralysis or coma. Many people who suffer a traumatic brain injury may report headaches that get worse or do not go away, blurred vision, tired eyes, ringing in the ears, behavioral problems, mood swings, memory problems, cognitive problems, fatigue, sleep problems, bad taste in the mouth, attention issues, concentration issues, dizziness, lightheadedness, and confusion. More severe cases may have symptoms that include seizures, slurred speech, weakness in the limbs, unconsciousness, and severe agitation.

How are traumatic brain injuries treated?

Depending on the age of the individual, much of the initial brain damage will be permanent, although many younger patients are often able to re-route and re-learn throughout their rehabilitation and recovery. When TBIs are initially treated, doctors concentrate on controlling brain swelling against the skull, which can cause further damage than the initial accident. After the patient is stabilized, the brain injury victim usually have many months of rehabilitation ahead of them - and it is almost impossible to predict how far individual recoveries will progress. While some might never regain speech or consciousness, others could return almost to normal.

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