What is a Traumatic Brain Injury?
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a complex injury with wide variety of symptoms and subsequent disabilities. The impact on a person and his or her family can be devastating. TBI are most often caused by motor vehicle accidents, sports injuries or simple falls. Concussions are common causes of TBI resulting in symptoms that may be overlooked or dismissed. Symptoms associated with post-concussion syndrome can persist long after the initial injury. The deficits associated with head trauma will vary depending on the type and severity of the injury.
What are some symptoms of a TBI?
Symptoms of a TBI may not appear until days or weeks following the injury. Some of the most common symptoms are:
- Headache that gets worse or won’t go away
- Neck pain
- Repeated vomiting or nausea
- Ringing in ears
- Convulsions or seizures
- Inability to awaken from sleep
- Slurred speech
- Weakness or numbness in the arms and legs
- Dilated eye pupils
What problems can occur after a TBI?
People with a brain injury often have cognitive (thinking) and communication problems that significantly impair their ability to live independently. Some of the problems with social communication might include:
- Taking turns in conversation
- Maintaining a topic of conversation
- Using an appropriate tone of voice
- Interpreting the subtle of conversation
- Responding to facial expression and body language
- Keeping up with others in a fast paced conversation
- Some of the cognitive problems might include:
- Trouble concentrating when there are distractions
- Slower processing or “taking in” of new information
- Problems with recent memory
- Executive functioning problems