When someone is in an accident, whether it is a car accident, slip and fall accident, or even a workplace accident, this can end up affecting the brain. Not only can this have an impact right after the accident, but research points to the fact that the effects can continue on for the rest of a person's life.
There has long been a link between brain injuries and depression. Prior to a recent study, the focus was always on adults with brain injuries and depression, never children. Recently though, researchers went about analyzing the connection between children who suffered from brain injuries and depression. Just as with adults, a connection was found.
For this study, researchers took information from the 2007 National Survey of Children's Health. In total, 2,034 children who suffered from brain injuries were identified. Next, researchers identified 3,112 children with a depression diagnosis. This initial analysis found that those children who suffered from brain injuries had a 4.9-fold increase in being diagnosed with depression.
However, researchers did not just take this information at face value. Rather, the data was adjusted for family income and structure, child health, maternal mental health, developmental achievement, age, race and ethnicity. Once these other factors were factored in, the differences were still seen. Among U.S. children, the prevalence of depression was at 3.7 percent. Among U.S. children who had suffered from brain injuries or concussions, the prevalence of depression was at 15 percent.
For the Tennessee parents of a child involved in an accident that leads to a brain injury, whether it is a concussion or a traumatic brain injury, this study goes to show how important it is to continue to be on the lookout for changes in behavior or mood after the accident. For while the injury is one thing that needs to be dealt with immediately, the other effects from these injuries may also need to be addressed.