The sooner a traumatic brain injury is recognized and treated after a slip and fall accident occurs, the greater the recovery prospects of the individual. Early diagnosis can prevent further injury and allow physicians and therapists to administer treatments that can significantly improve quality of life. Whether the injury occurred at work, on the sports field, at home, or at the store, individuals should not delay consulting with medical professionals who can evaluate the full extent of the injury.
Signs of Mild Traumatic Brain Injury
Mild brain injuries may result in short-term loss of consciousness, headaches, nausea/vomiting, and fatigue. Individuals may experience difficulty speaking, changes to sleep patterns, dizziness, and sensitivity to light and sound. Memory changes and problems concentrating are also common. People may also experience mood changes and develop anxiety or depression.
Other signs of brain injury include loss of the sense of smell and the ability to taste food properly. Individuals may also suffer double vision, difficulty swallowing, hearing loss or persistent ringing in the ear.
Signs of Moderate & Severe Traumatic Brain Injury
Moderate and severe brain injuries cause similar symptoms in patients. Victims can lose consciousness for minutes to hours following the injury. They may suffer from persistent headaches and bouts of vomiting and nausea that are difficult to control. In some instances, the individual may suffer seizures and uncontrollable convulsions.
Moderate traumatic brain injury can also cause severe confusion, agitation, and aggressive behaviors. Victims often suffer significant speech problems and may fall in and out of a coma. Severe brain injuries must be treated immediately as there is a significant risk of the individual falling into a permanent vegetative state and brain death. There is also an increased risk of Alzheimer’s, dementia, and stroke.
Treatment for Traumatic Brain Injuries
Emergency room physicians will assess the injured party using the Glasgow Coma Scale. This 15-point test assesses the extent of the injury. Mild injuries are typically treated with pain relievers, monitoring, and rest.
Treatment for more severe injuries can include surgery and long-term therapy. In some cases, victims may need to undergo multiple surgeries to control blood clots, skull fractures, and persistent bleeding on the brain. Over the course of therapy, individuals can expect regular appointments with physical therapists, language and speech pathologists, psychiatrists, and other counselors as required. The duration and extent of treatment depend on how severe the injury was and how the individual responds to treatment.