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How can traumatic brain injuries affect a victim?

As we learned in a recent blog regarding retired New York Jet Mark Gastineau, multiple hits to the head can cause long-term mental conditions which do not always immediately reveal themselves at the time of the injury. While repeated mild head trauma and concussions may not immediately impact a victim significantly, harder hits to the head may cause immediate and significant head injuries, often called traumatic brain injuries, or TBIs.

Unfortunately, considering the vulnerable position of the human head and the countless activities Americans go thought every day, TBIs are quite common. In fact, it is believed approximately 1.7 million traumatic brain injuries occur every year, including hospital stays, emergency room visits, and even in severe cases, death.

Common activities that could cause a brain injury include but are not limited to automobile or motorcycle accidents, sports activities such as American football and soccer, and work related accidents, especially on construction sites with powerful equipment and materials that could present hazardous conditions. Even when all necessary precautions are taken such as wearing a seatbelt while on the roads and wearing a helmet when participating in recreational activities, any crash, accident or collision could lead to a potentially catastrophic brain injury.

Traumatic brain injuries may not necessarily be easy to diagnose, though some symptoms are quite common, including headaches, weakness or numbness in the body, dizziness or nausea, sluggishness or tiredness, and problems with memory including short term memory loss. More serious brain injuries could lead to long term and even life-long issues including depression, permanent loss of senses, and even a coma or death. Brain injuries are among the types of injuries included in the Social Security's disability benefits for injuries programs, allowing victims who are out of work to possibly obtain some financial relief while they recover from their condition.

Source: FindLaw, "Brain Injury Overview," Accessed on Jan. 24, 2017

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