How to spot an “invisible injury” & take action to protect your rights after a concussion…
At first glance, the whole idea of a “Brain Injury Awareness Month” can seem a little odd.
“If I had a brain injury,” you might think, “I’m pretty sure I’d know it.”
But that’s precisely the point. Brain injuries happen more easily and more frequently than many people realize, and the victims themselves don’t always realize they’re suffering from one until precious hours, days, or weeks have slipped away.
So, in honor of national Brain Injury Awareness Month and its theme for 2019 — “Change Your Mind” — we tackled some of the most dangerous myths about brain injuries and concussions.
Knowledge is power. To that end, it is our hope to raise awareness about the sometimes-subtle symptoms of concussion, as well as victims’ legal rights for the road ahead.
Myths About Brain Injuries & Concussions
In the United States, brain injuries happen once every nine seconds. That adds up to 2.5 million Americans with a traumatic brain injury (or TBI) every year. 50,000 of those people die as a result. That’s 137 deaths per day. The majority of the survivors end up receiving treatment in an emergency room or trauma center — though many of them wait too long to seek care.
Experts believe these dangerous delays are the result of pernicious myths about TBIs, concussions in particular.
That’s right: all concussions are TBIs. The misguided belief that a concussion is anything less than “traumatic” is the first myth Americans need to tackle. Concussions are, by definition, a blow to the brain itself, and they are always serious, even if they are “mild.”
Here are three other myths to be mindful of this Brain Injury Awareness Month:
• Myth: Helmets prevent concussions. While wearing a helmet can help to reduce the force of impact and thus reduce the damage that might otherwise occur, no helmet offers complete protection. Indeed, many of the Americans who suffer concussions while playing sports or riding bikes were injured while wearing a helmet. (Had they not been wearing a helmet, the damages would likely have been much worse.)
• Myth: The skull is thick. In some places, the skull is quite thick. But in other areas, the human skull is exactly as thin as the average credit card. Think about the next time you swipe to pay.
• Myth: If you weren’t unconscious, it wasn’t a concussion. In fact, the signs and symptoms of concussion can look quite different from one person to the next. Too many people have assumed that, because they didn’t black out, they weren’t seriously injured. On the contrary, only 10% of concussion victims lose consciousness.
Symptoms of Concussion
Signs and symptoms of a concussion can happen immediately or develop more gradually. They may include:
• A feeling of pressure in the head
• Altered mental state (fogginess, confusion, or appearing dazed)
• Memory problems / amnesia (forgetting the event that caused the TBI)
• Nausea or vomiting
• Ringing in the ears (tinnitus) and/or sensitivity to noise
• Seeing stars and/or sensitivity to light
• Slurred speech or delayed response to questions
• Personality changes
• Difficulty sleeping
• Changes in taste or smell (usually hours or days after the injury)
Concussions are especially common in children and toddlers, who can’t always verbalize their experiences. It’s important for parents to be vigilant and to look for signs of confusion, irritability, listlessness, or changes in personality.
Other common signs in small children include: loss of balance, unsteady walking, excessive crying, and losing interest in their usual activities or toys.
Talk to an Indiana Brain Injury Lawyer at Doehrman Buba Ring
Many brain injuries arise in the context of auto accidents, truck accidents, or high school sports. Other common scenarios include dangerous property conditions, slip and fall accidents, defective products, and assault.
In these and other situations, the parties involved may have been under certain legal duties to avoid causing you harm by exercising due care. Accordingly, you may be entitled to recover compensation for your damages under one or more insurance policies. An experienced Indiana brain injury lawyer at Doehrman Buba Ring can help.
Before you accept a settlement offer from a property owner or insurance company, we urge you to contact our office to talk about your options with an experienced Indiana brain injury lawyer. You may be entitled to more than you realize.
We will not charge you a fee unless we are successful in recovering compensation for your claim. To learn more, please contact Doehrman Buba Ring and schedule a free, no-obligation consultation today.
Concussions can happen quite easily. Our Indiana brain injury lawyers discuss the subtle symptoms & your legal rights…
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Daniel J. Buba
Daniel J. Buba is a personal injury lawyer with Doehrman Buba Ring in Indiana in his twenty-seventh year as a litigator. Mr. Buba represents a variety of personal injury clients, including traumatic brain injury victims, clients injured as a result of interstate truck crashes, and birth injury cases.
He is a past President of the Indianapolis Bar Association, a past Chairman of the AAJ Trucking Litigation Group, and serves on the Board of Directors of the Brain Injury Association of Indiana. He has authored numerous legal papers and lectures at local and national legal seminars.
- Daniel J. Buba/author/doehrman-buba/ Effective Truck Accident Settlement Demands: Best Practices
- Daniel J. Buba/author/doehrman-buba/ Evidence Preservation in Interstate Trucking Cases
- Daniel J. Buba/author/doehrman-buba/ Cross-Examination of Safety Director in Semi Truck Crash Cases
- Daniel J. Buba/author/doehrman-buba/ Truck Driver Rules in Cases Involving Turns, Parking, and Route Planning