After a serious car accident, many crash victims sustain concussions. In fact, more than 70,000 hospital emergency room visits are made every year for concussions related to car, motorcycle, or truck accidents.
Concussions are a growing problem—especially among young people. As a result, Friday, September 16, has been designated National Concussion Awareness Day to bring attention to the issue. The goal is to drum up support for those with concussions, increase knowledge to identify traumatic brain injuries, and raise funds for brain injury research and treatment institutions.
At Hoover Rogers Law, LLP, our brain injury attorneys are dedicated to protecting concussion victims' legal rights in the Wichita Falls-Lawton region. That's why we are participating in this year's concussion awareness campaign and sharing information on the types of concussions you can sustain in a car accident.
If you have been in a Wichita Falls or Lawton area car accident and suffered a concussion or other type of head injury, contact us right away to schedule a free injury case consultation. We can answer your questions and help you weigh your legal options.
What is a concussion?
A concussion is a temporary condition that affects your awareness and thinking. Concussions can be mild, moderate, or severe. They are a type of traumatic brain injury sometimes referred to as an mTBI (mild traumatic brain injury), though victims may argue there is nothing mild about concussions. A traumatic brain injury happens when an outside force alters a person's brain function or pathology.
When you hit your head or are jerked around violently in a car accident, the rapid movement can cause the brain to bounce, twist, and hit the inside of the skull. This stretches and bruises brain tissues and sets the stage for a concussion.
How can you get a concussion in a car accident?
In a car accident, a concussion may be caused by sudden blunt force trauma, a bump, or a jolt. For example, you may get a concussion from hitting your head on the steering wheel, dashboard, headrest, roof, window, or windshield. You could also be struck by items in the car that become airborne in the crash. It's also possible that your brain was knocked into your skull by the force of the crash impact.
What are concussion symptoms?
In general, symptoms of a physical (somatic) concussion include:
- Temporary unconsciousness (less than 15 minutes)
- Feeling dazed, confused, light-headed
- Nausea or vomiting
- Slowly answering questions
- Double vision
- Light sensitivity
- Lack of balance and coordination (may appear "clumsy")
- Short-term memory loss
What are the types of concussions?
There are a handful of concussion types. Each one produces different damage and requires treatment designed for the specific accident victim's circumstances.
Cognitive/fatigue concussion - Causes trouble with prolonged or complex tasks. Long days can cause major fatigue and ruin an injured person's ability to concentrate.
Vestibular - A concussion type characterized by loss of balance, motion, vision, vertigo, and giddiness.
Ocular - This type of concussion reduces eye control and makes visual tasks difficult, like reading and looking at computer screens.
Cervical - When a car accident injury puts stress or pressure on the neck, spine, or spinal cord, the cervical discs can become damaged, leading to ongoing headaches.
Anxiety/Emotional (affective) - This concussion can change the way your brain functions and personality. For example, a formerly outgoing person can become consumed with fear and worry. Anxiety can cause problems in social interactions.
Can a concussion be long-term?
Most concussion symptoms subside in 3-6 months. But not all. Post Concussive Syndrome (PCS) is when concussion symptoms persist longer than expected. Symptoms include:
- Mood swings
- Trouble remembering things
- Reduced impulse control
- Unable to focus and pay attention
The symptoms worsen when a person is physically or mentally overloaded. Therapy and medication may be used to treat PCS.
An attorney can help you recover after a concussion
If you or someone you loved suffered a concussion in an accident due to negligence, you may have recourse through the civil justice system. A concussion lawyer from our law firm can help you get the medical treatment you deserve, determine the actual cost of your damages (including the long-term impact of your brain injury), negotiate with the insurance company, and advocate for the maximum compensation you're entitled to under the law.
At Hoover Rogers Law, LLP, we stand up for victims of car accidents in the Wichita Falls and Lawton region. We take care of the legal side of your accident so you can focus on your recovery. The key is to talk to a member of our legal team as soon as possible to review your legal rights and options.
Call, email, or chat online to schedule your free consultation with us today.