Every year in the U.S., approximately 52,000 people die from brain related injuries. Another 275,000 are hospitalized and more than one million are treated in emergency settings. With October being National Brain Injury Awareness month, now is as good a time as any to discuss just what a brain injury is, what the signs and symptoms of a brain injury are, and how these types of injuries can go on to effect a person for the rest of his or her life.
A brain injury falls under two main classifications: traumatic brain injury and an acquired brain injury. With a brain injury, it is typically caused by the brain colliding with the skull. This can result in bruising, bleeding and dysfunction to the cells in the brain.
A traumatic brain injury is most often associated with the type of injury sustained in a car accident, while an acquired brain injury is one typically stemming from things like stroke, drowning and electric shock.
Part of the problem with brain injuries is that a person can suffer from one without necessarily even realizing it. This is why it's important to be on the lookout for the following signs and symptoms after taking a hard hit to the head:
- Mood swings
- Loss of consciousness
- Memory problems
- Balance issues
If any of these signs and symptoms arise, it's better to be safe than sorry and seek medical attention immediately.
Those who suffer from brain injuries can often end up needing rather expensive care; including rehabilitation, physical and cognitive therapy -- and in some serious cases -- around the clock care in order to function. These needs can also end up lasting a lifetime.