Car accidents can cause serious injuries, some of which may have long-term physical and psychological effects. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, car accidents are the second leading cause of traumatic brain injury involved hospitalizations.

Furthermore, brain trauma kills an average of 155 people every day. Those who understand the signs and symptoms of brain trauma, may be able to minimize the effects.

What are the signs of traumatic brain damage?

The signs of brain damage vary depending on what part of the brain is injured, as well as the severity of the impact. The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke reports the following signs of mild to moderate brain trauma:

  • Dizziness, confusion and fatigue
  • Sensory deficiencies, such as trouble hearing and visual difficulties
  • Persistent headaches with increasing intensity
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Tingling in the extremities and muscle weakness
  • Mood and personality changes

Severe cases of trauma involve seizures, unconscious, trouble swallowing, slurred speech and loss of coordination.

It is critical to seek medical attention as soon as possible after the injury occurs. Medical professionals can detect where the damage occurred and customize a treatment plan to maximize the outcome.

What causes traumatic brain injury?

A hard hit or sudden impact to the head, such as hitting the side window or steering wheel, can cause the soft brain tissue to reverberate within the skull cavity. This can lead to brain bruising, bleeding and inflammation. As the brain swells, pressure builds up in the skull, potentially causing more damage.

In severe cases, the skull bone may break, sending pieces of bone into the brain tissue. Brain damage can make it difficult for people to return to work, sleep, participate in hobbies and enjoy the quality of life they had before the injury occurred.