Car accidents are dangerous and frightening and often cause devastating injuries. Of these, head injuries can be some of those most challenging, because your cognitive abilities may be impaired without you even realizing it. Head injuries may be asymptomatic at the scene of the accident, with significant and dangerous symptoms presenting only after the fact, making matters even more complicated. Even a mild head injury can lead to cognitive difficulties and should never be discounted. If you’ve been in a car accident, it’s always a good idea to seek medical attention and rule out any head injury, even if you think you feel fine.
Concussions are very common head injuries occurring in car accidents. A concussion is a mild form of traumatic brain injury (TBI) caused by either rough shaking of the head or a blow to the head. A concussion is usually a temporary condition that heals with time, but may cause significant physical and cognitive issues over time. On the spectrum of traumatic brain injuries, concussions are considered mild, but are nevertheless often associated with serious health consequences. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that concussions account for most TBIs, and that TBIs play a role in almost a third of all deaths caused by traumatic injury in the United States.
If you’ve suffered a head injury in a car accident caused by another driver’s negligence, you need experienced legal counsel to help you navigate the process of recovery. Car accident injury claims may be complicated, especially when you are facing cognitive issues. The dedicated legal team at The Levin Firm in Philadelphia understands exactly how overwhelming your situation can be. We’re here to help effectively and efficiently guide you through the claim process and help ensure that you recover fair compensation for your injuries.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Head injuries like TBIs are often referred to as silent injuries because they may not be visible to the outside observer, which can exacerbate their isolating effects. Your brain is your body’s command central, which allows you to effectively navigate through life. As such, any injury to this delicately calibrated system can lead to negative cognitive consequences. TBIs can be unpredictable, with even very slight injuries causing significant cognitive issues.
The Mayo Clinic reports that traffic accidents are one of the top four causes of TBIs. A car accident need not be especially serious or high speed to cause a traumatic brain injury.
Victims of head injuries, such as concussions and other TBIs, often suffer what they describe as an altered sense of self. This may occur because cognitive processes are so closely related to what makes us unique. For example, TBI victims can suffer memory loss and the inability to regulate their emotions in familiar ways, resulting in abrupt personality changes. Such consequences can lead to psychological effects that include depression and social isolation. Ultimately, these effects tend to push away the injured person’s support system just when needed most.
In addition, a TBI that causes you to suffer from cognitive impairment is likely to affect your ability to carry out your job. A TBI can cause you to lose hours at work, or even to lose your capacity to function at your previous performance level altogether. Because our careers are so closely tied to our sense of self and to our position in the world, this can be just as psychologically and emotionally damaging as it is financially devastating.
Traumatic Brain Injuries: The Symptoms
Traumatic brain injuries can be slow to present with symptoms, but there are several signs that you should be on the lookout for if you or someone you care about has been in a car accident:
- Loss of coordination
- Nausea and vomiting
- Persistent headaches
- The sudden onset of fatigue
- Widespread or localized weakness or numbness
- Speech disturbances
- The sudden onset of mood swings
- A change in behavior or personality
Any of these symptoms can indicate a traumatic brain injury. Even if the symptoms seem relatively mild, they should not be ignored. Instead, seek immediate medical attention if you experience any of those symptoms after an accident.
Traumatic Brain Injuries and Treatment
Traumatic brain injuries are tricky. Because these injuries can linger before presenting with symptoms, they often go undiagnosed until they become more pronounced and more difficult to treat. In fact, TBIs sometimes sneak up so quietly that victims have a difficult time connecting them to the precipitating accident. Further, because these injuries are so unpredictable, it’s difficult to know how a TBI will affect your life as you move into the future. Immediate medical attention is always the safest option when it comes to car accidents.
Your Car Accident Claim
Every car accident claim is unique and often complicated. If someone else’s negligence has caused you to suffer a head injury in a car accident, you need both experienced medical attention and skilled legal counsel. Your claim and your just compensation are too important to leave to chance or to the insurance company. Insurance companies all too often make lowball offers to settle serious injury claims, while you are faced with mounting medical bills. Don’t be tempted to take on an insurance company yourself, especially if you’ve suffered a head injury with cognitive issues. You need an attorney experienced with your type of claim to help you successfully negotiate with the insurance company, and to bring suit if necessary.
If a Car Accident Has Left You Injured, Contact an Experienced Philadelphia Car Accident Attorney Today
Being injured in a car accident can be overwhelming, especially if you’ve suffered a head injury. At The Levin Firm in Philadelphia, our dedicated car accident attorneys have the experience, skill, and determination to help guide your claim toward the best possible resolution, while you focus on your recovery. We have over 50 years of combined experience helping people who have been injured in accidents in Philadelphia. We’re here to help. Please contact or call us at 215-825-5183 today.