It only takes an instant for an accident to change the course of your life. Maybe you were in your car, headed somewhere. Maybe you were going about your daily work routine. Perhaps you were out shopping. Suddenly, another driver slams into you, a machine at work strikes you or you slip in a puddle of spilled liquid while at the store. All of a sudden, you're dizzy and confused because you hit your head.
Any accident that results in blunt force trauma to the head (any kind of blow or strike) or any situation that shakes your body vigorously could result in a traumatic brain injury (TBI). Traumatic brain injuries can create short-term symptoms as well as permanent disabilities, depending on the location and severity of the injury.
TBIs can impact your ability to work
Your memory, personality and even your motor control are all under the power of your brain. When you injure your brain, it can have unpredictable consequences. Sometimes, people struggle with forming and recalling new memories. Other people experience memory loss, which means they can no longer recall things they once could. In cases with motor impacts, a brain injury could affect your strength, flexibility and range of motion in a limb or section of your body.
Personality changes are also possible. People may experience powerful mood swings after a TBI, as well as changes in how they interact with others. Sometimes, these changes are temporary and go away after the swelling and bleeding associated with the TBI resolve. For others, however, the symptoms and changes in ability may be permanent. In these situations, the person with the TBI may no longer be able to work in the same career or industry as before. In some cases, symptoms are so severe that the person cannot work at all.
TBIs commonly result in medical expenses
Diagnosis, treatment and therapy can all become expensive very quickly. Especially if the injured person is the primary wage earner for your family, a TBI could be devastating for your financial stability. Without a steady stream of income and with mounting medical expenses, you may be unable to pay for even the most basic of life expenses.
Thankfully, the victims of TBIs often have options for compensation. If your head injury happened while you were working, you may qualify for workers' compensation benefits. For those who were injured in a business or while driving, there is the potential for both insurance benefits and civil lawsuits to recover expenses beyond what insurance will pay.
It can take a while to adjust to the symptoms of a TBI and understand how it will impact your life and your future. Once you know the scope of the impact, you should explore your options for recovering the losses that resulted from the injury.