A car accident does not have to turn your vehicle into a twisted pile of smoldering metal to cause serious and potentially life-altering injuries. Any blow to the head in a traffic collision can lead to traumatic brain injury (TBI) and long-term or permanent disability.
As the Mayo Clinic explains on its website, the most common cause of TBI is a blow to the head. Blunt force to the head forces the brain to bounce off the inside of the skull, often causing bruising, bleeding and tearing of nerve fibers. The brain then swells up, reducing oxygen flow in what is called secondary injury.
Common symptoms of brain injury
Symptoms to watch out for include:
- Loss of consciousness
- Headache that won’t go away or grows worse over time
- Dilated pupil in one or both eyes
- Slurred speech
- Erratic behavior, such as combativeness
While most brain injuries cause no long-term damage, a serious TBI can affect you in profound ways. Depending on which part of your brain was affected and the severity of the damage, your cognitive skills, self-control, speech, coordination and even personality could all be harmed. And you could be at higher risk of developing Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and other degenerative diseases someday.
Auto accidents are one of the most common reasons people suffer brain injuries. Such incidents often happen because one of the drivers acted negligently, such as by speeding, running a red light or losing control while driving drunk. Fortunately for victims, Maryland law gives them the chance to seek restitution from the responsible party, instead of having to pay for medical bills, lost wages and other damages themselves.