What is Traumatic Brain Injury? Causes, Symptoms & Treatment of TBI

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a blanket term for injuries caused by a blow to the head or penetration of the skull that lead to brain dysfunction. A TBI can be mild or severe, temporary or permanent—it depends on many factors including the cause of the injury, age of the victim, and how quickly the condition is diagnosed. Our Santa Clarita brain injury attorney explains the most common causes and symptoms of TBI so you can recognize the signs and get treatment.

Causes of TBI

A TBI is a common accident injury, especially in car accident, slip and fall, and assault cases. However, a brain injury isn’t always obvious. Though TBIs are often caused by a direct blow to the head or an object piercing the skull, they can also be caused by less visible occurrences—such as whiplash or any other powerful force that causes the brain to shift inside of the skull.

Let’s look at some of the most common causes of TBI:

  • Amusement park ride injuries
  • Bicycle accidents
  • Car crashes
  • Motorcycle crashes
  • Contact sports
  • Physical assault
  • Slip and fall accidents

Symptoms of TBI

The symptoms of TBI may vary or even be impossible to detect without medical intervention. However, certain signs can point to a TBI.

Common symptoms of TBI include:

  • Difficulty with communication, speaking, reading, and writing
  • Failure or deterioration of various senses
  • Paralysis or spasticity
  • Changes in appetite
  • Chronic pain
  • Memory loss
  • Numbness or tingling
  • Unconsciousness
  • Coma
  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Clear fluid or blood coming out of ears and nose
  • Depression
  • Mood changes
  • Irritability or aggression
  • Lack of inhibition
  • Lack of awareness

Generally, the more severe the symptoms are, the more severe the brain injury. One may have a combination of several symptoms, or none. The best way to be sure is to head to the doctor for a checkup—or call 911 if serious.

Getting Treated for a TBI

When clear signs of a head injury are present, such as bruising or bleeding, an accident victim is generally rushed to the hospital and treated right away. However, because TBIs can also be caused by whiplash and other invisible forces, they may not be apparent until a person starts to experience symptoms—at which point, precious time has already passed, and the injury may have worsened.

If you have been in an accident, especially a car crash or slip and fall, it is recommended you visit a doctor as soon as possible—even if you feel fine. Some brain injuries are only detectable through diagnostics performed by a trained medical professional. Some brain injuries are invisible even to MRIs and CT scans.

Once detected, mild brain injuries like concussions typically only require time and rest to heal. Moderate or severe TBIs can involve surgery and/or a stint intensive care. In worst cases, a brain injury may never heal, requiring life-long treatment and perhaps even a live-in caregiver.

The most important thing to do is seek treatment as soon as possible following an injury. The sooner you get help, the better your chances of making the best recovery available for your condition.

If you or a loved one has suffered a TBI in an accident caused by another’s negligence or cruelty, contact our firm today. Our Santa Clarita brain injury attorney will fight for the compensation you need to pay for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.


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