What Happens When You Suffer A Brain Injury In A Car Accident?
Brain injuries are common occurrences after a severe car accident. Most victims of car accidents don’t realize they have a brain injury because the symptoms of a brain injury after a car accident may not occur right away, and because their mental status diminishes making them unable to notice such “invisible” symptoms.
Left untreated, brain injury can cause a person to suffer from permanent or long-term issues. If you or a family member has suffered a brain injury caused by an accident, you must contact an experienced lawyer.
What are some of the common brain injuries after a car accident?
Types of Brain Injuries From Car Accidents
There are several ways that an individual can suffer a head injury from a car accident. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately two million Americans experience traumatic brain injuries each year.
About 14% of the individuals sustain a head injury, as a result of the car accident. Unfortunately, vehicle restraints don’t offer complete protection from these types of injuries.
Even with seat belts on, the impact from another vehicle still causes your head to move and collide with hard surfaces within the car, or your jelly-like brain matter, may abruptly pound against your skull wall ending in stretching and shearing your neurons, and thus causing an “invisible” microscopic brain injury.
Rear-end car accidents are one type of accident that may cause you to sustain a brain injury. The sudden impact from a rear-end collision may cause a person’s head to swing forward and hit the steering wheel.
The impact with a hard surface, such as a steering wheel or windshield creates the likelihood of sustaining a traumatic car accident head injury.
Side-impact car accidents also have the potential to cause brain injury. The force from a side-impact crash may cause your head to slam into a window. This impact could cause your brain to move or press against the skull and result in internal swelling.
Head-on collisions will likely cause a car crash brain injury. A head-on car accident causes a person’s head to strike the headrest with extreme force and may result in a head injury.
Common Brain Injuries Car Crash Causes
Brain injury could result from trauma or is acquired. A car accident may cause a traumatic brain injury while an acquired brain injury is caused by events after birth, rather than as part of a genetic or congenital disorder such as fetal alcohol syndrome, perinatal illness or perinatal hypoxia.
A blow to a person’s head causes traumatic injuries. Unlike traumatic brain injuries, acquired injuries don’t occur during a car accident. Oxygen deprivation causes acquired injuries.
Concussions are the most common type of traumatic brain injury car accident that occurs frequently. This takes place when the victim sustains a blow to the head.
A concussion sometimes occurs with a whiplash injury. Some common signs and symptoms of a concussion include:
- Persistent or recurrent headache
- Amnesia regarding the car accident
- Psychological issues such as depression
- Issues with memory and focusing
- Sensitivity to loud noise and light
- Vision problems
A bruise or contusion on the brain is another type of car accident brain injury. Trauma to the head causes the injury. The injury is related to striking the head on the steering wheel or the window. Its impact may cause the brain to move inside the skull and form contusions in several areas of your brain.
The severity of a car crash determines the severity of a brain injury. While it is uncommon to suffer a head injury in low-speed accidents, it is very common in high-speed crashes.
Proving the At-Fault Driver Liable for the Brain Injury
To recover compensation for brain damage after the car accident, you must establish the other party is liable for the injury. This will require the lawyer to prove the following elements in the claim:
- Duty Of Care
The other driver had a legal duty to drive safely to avoid car accidents. This includes the following traffic laws and refraining from engaging in dangerous behavior.
- Breach Of Duty
The at-fault party breached his or her duty by driving in a manner that deviates from how a reasonably prudent person operates a vehicle. This includes failing to exercise reasonable care to avoid causing car accidents.
You must show that you suffered measurable damages as the result of the at fault party’s breach of duty. This includes medical treatment cost, long-term care, or wages you lost while you were unable to work.
Your attorney will advise you on the types of compensation available for brain injury victims.
Successful Claims Are Built On Strong Evidence
Successful claims are based on compelling evidence of the insured driver’s role in the crash. You will need to show:
- The insured driver was negligent, meaning they did something wrong
- The driver’s negligence caused the collision
- The collision caused head injuries
If you or a loved one suffered any brain injury from a car accident, there’s the possibility of delayed symptoms. No matter what, you need to get immediate medical assistance. Also, contact an attorney to get a fair amount of compensation.
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