Over the last several decades, there have been major studies related to concussions and traumatic brain injuries, particularly concerning athletes and impact sports. However, anyone can sustain concussions and traumatic brain injuries, so it is important to examine whether or not a history of concussions makes a person more susceptible to a TBI. In the event of a traumatic brain injury stemming from an accident, getting in touch with a Coweta County personal injury lawyer is essential to guide you through legal intricacies and advocate for the compensation you deserve for medical bills and emotional trauma.
The Impact of Previous Brain Injuries on Additional TBIs
Concussions are traumatic brain injuries. This is a nuance that many people do not quite understand. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), concussions are considered mild traumatic brain injuries, but just because the word “mild” is included does not mean they should be taken any less seriously than a moderate to severe traumatic brain injury.
Because concussions are actually traumatic brain injuries, a history of concussions can make a person more susceptible to severe head trauma if that individual experiences additional blows to the head or body.
Studies show that multiple traumatic brain injuries can have “a cumulative detrimental effect on functioning” in the brain. A history of previous traumatic brain injuries is common among adults seeking emergency room care for a current TBI (23% of individuals).
The CDC states that those who experience repeated head impacts could lead to a person experiencing longer recovery times and more severe symptoms as well as long-term issues, including problems with:
- Repeated headaches
- Balance issues
- Sensory problems
Chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) is a brain disease that can only be diagnosed after a person’s death. This particular disease has been linked to changes in the brain that affect how the brain operates, and researchers have noticed that those who suffer from CTE often have an extensive history of concussions and more severe traumatic brain injuries, often from playing sports.
Take Each Concussion Seriously
A doctor needs to conduct an evaluation and examine a person’s signs and symptoms in order to determine the best course of treatment after a concussion occurs. It is important to note that the signs and symptoms of a concussion may not appear until hours or even days after the injury initially occurs.
Depending on the severity of the concussion, medical professionals may prescribe different types of treatment. Generally, individuals are asked to rest for a period of time after the incident to allow their brains to recover. This includes both physical rest and mental rest. Doctors recommend limiting activities that require a lot of thinking or mental concentration for the first few days after a concussion.
Individuals should avoid any physical activities that increase the concussion symptoms, including vigorous movements. Healthcare professionals typically recommend that individuals gradually increase their daily activities, including screen time and physical activities, but the time frame for this activity should be determined by the medical professional.
One issue that researchers are continuing to study is the impact of head injuries that individuals do not even know about. Often, individuals sustain impacts to the head and do not feel any symptoms or realize that the symptoms they feel are related to the concussion. This is not uncommon with individuals who play high-contact sports, such as football, rugby, lacrosse, cheerleading, and other sports.