A concussion is the most common type of traumatic brain injury. The terms mild brain injury, mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI), mild head injury (MHI), and minor head trauma are also used to describe concussions.
Concussions occur as a result of a violent blow or shaking or spinning of the head. Car crashes are among the leading causes of concussions. A brain concussion can cause immediate and usually temporary impairment in thinking, vision, equilibrium and consciousness.
Signs of concussion include:
• Victim appears dazed.
• Victim has vacant facial expression.
• Victim is confused about what is going on.
• Victim is disoriented to place or time.
• Victim displays inappropriate emotional reaction.
• Victim appears clumsier than normal.
• Victim is slow to answer questions.
• Victim loses consciousness.
• Victim has change in typical behavior.
• Victim is unable to express thoughts verbally or seems to stumble on words
• Victim may appear to be under the influence
The following are the most common symptoms of concussions:
• Balance problems or dizziness
• Double or fuzzy vision
• Sensitivity to light or noise
• Feeling slowed down
• Feeling “foggy” or “not sharp”
• Change in sleep pattern
• Concentration or memory problems
• Feeling more emotional
• Memory loss
Treatment of a concussion involves monitoring and rest. Doctors will usually order a CT scan to check for bleeding and other brain injury; Concussion complicated by bleeding or brain damage must be treated in a hospital. Otherwise, the accident victim can rest at home.
In most cases, the symptoms go away entirely within three weeks; however, victims should not play sports or engage in activities that may cause further head injury for a period of 3 months. There is an increased rate of brain injury and death in persons who have had a previous concussion that resulted in unconsciousness.
If the victim shows any of the following signs or symptoms, seek immediate medical treatment as these may be signs of more serious injury.
• Changes in alertness and consciousness
• Muscle weakness on one or both sides
• Persistent confusion
• Persistent unconsciousness (coma)
• Repeated vomiting
• Unequal pupils
• Unusual eye movements
• Walking problems
Concussion sustained in a car accident is often associated with injuries to the neck and spine, including whiplash.
The Atlanta Law Offices of Shane Smith represent victims of auto accidents throughout the Atlanta metropolitan area. If you have been injured in an Atlanta car crash, we are here to help. For more information, contact Atlanta personal injury attorney Shane Smith's office at 770-HURT-999 and request our free guide “10 Mistakes That Can Ruin Your Georgia Wreck Case.”