Of all the injuries one can experience, brain injuries have some of the longest-lasting, most life-altering consequences. At first glance, you might not be able to tell that a person has suffered a brain injury in the past. They might appear to be quite healthy, and they may have the ability to continue working and taking care of themselves just like any other member of society. But when you dig a little deeper, you find out that many of these brain injury victims are dealing with serious, permanent consequences that affect their overall quality of life.
Even a relatively light knock to the head can result in serious changes to a person’s overall health. Researchers are now beginning to understand that even a single concussion can cause mental and physical health issues years or even decades into the future. These issues can vary considerably. Because the brain is the processing center of the entire body, a patient’s physical well-being can be impacted by brain injuries. In serious cases, people can lose the ability to walk or use their arms normally.
On the other hand, head injuries can also cause extremely worrying and confusing changes to a person’s mental well-being. Although the science of head injuries is still a relatively new field of study, we now understand that a knock to the head can significantly change a person’s personality. Along with cognitive impairment, head injuries can change the way a person thinks and feels, causing mental health disorders like anxiety and depression. These injuries can even change a person’s sexuality. It goes without saying that these consequences can have a notable effect on a person’s existing relationships and their ability to form new ones in the future.
With such notable physical and mental consequences, it is imperative that injury victims seek help from a qualified, experienced brain injury lawyer as soon as possible. With the right legal assistance, these individuals can get the compensation they need to deal with the many challenges they may face in the future.
The Importance of Getting Medical Treatment
After suffering brain injuries, many victims fail to get the medical attention they need. This is especially true if individuals have suffered relatively minor head injuries due to a car accident or a fall. Many people tend to dismiss the serious nature of a head injury, perhaps because they do not experience any notable issues in the days after their accident. But if there is one thing that is important to remember about head injuries, it is the fact that they can become progressively worse over time – even after a relatively minor impact or concussion.
This is why it is crucial for injury victims to get properly assessed by a medical professional. Trained doctors can accurately determine the extent of the brain injury, and they can make predictions about how this injury might impact a patient in the future. Not only that, but this treatment also creates a valuable record of the head injury actually taking place. Without these medical records, it may be difficult for a plaintiff to prove that they suffered a legitimate head injury in the accident.
How a Brain Injury Affects a Person’s Life
The long-term effects of a brain injury can be split into several categories:
- Motor Deficits: These are the physical impacts of brain injuries, and they often take the form of major disabilities. Brain injuries can result in paralysis, spasticity, uncontrolled movements, and much more. Brain injury victims may discover that certain tasks are much more difficult than they used to be. These might be as simple as buttoning a shirt or pouring a glass of water. Victims may also have trouble with walking, talking, and vision.
- Personality Changes: A brain injury can also impact a person’s personality, and these are perhaps some of the most confusing and worrying problems for many patients. These changes include impulsiveness, fluctuating emotions, irritability, aggression, depression, lack of inhibition, denial, and many other problems. These issues can be incredibly traumatic, as patients feel like they are losing their sense of identity and they no longer know who they are.
- Cognitive Issues: Perhaps some of the most important consequences for brain injury lawsuits involve cognitive issues. This is because when a person loses their ability to think clearly and process information, it can impact their ability to work and support themselves financially. A brain injury can cause confusion, memory problems, reduced attention spans, and issues with executive functions (planning, abstract thinking, etc.).
These are only a few of the many long-lasting consequences a brain injury may have to endure during their lifetime.
Damages Related to Brain Injury Accidents
Injury victims can file for a number of damages in their personal injury lawsuit, and these damages reflect some of the most serious long-term effects of brain injuries:
- Medical expenses
- Loss of wages
- Loss of future income
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Mental trauma
- Diminished quality of life
- Loss of consortium
Loss of consortium may be especially important for spouses who are forced to end their marriage because of their brain injury. The personality changes caused by some brain injuries make this much more common than many people realize.
Challenges for Brain Injury Personal Injury Lawsuits
As previously mentioned, one of the biggest challenges associated with brain injury lawsuits is the fact that victims often neglect to get the medical treatment they need after an accident. This can result in a number of consequences. Firstly, it is important to treat head injuries early from a purely medical perspective.
Secondly, we also need to consider the statute of limitations. If a victim waits until the brain injury has progressed into a life-altering medical condition, it might be too late to file a lawsuit. Finally, the lack of medical treatment means that it is difficult to prove that the injury ever took place. Medical records are some of the most valuable pieces of evidence in personal injury lawsuits.
At the end of the day, a victim’s chances of success depend heavily on their ability to find a qualified, experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Once they are in the hands of a legal professional, they can be guided and assisted in an effective manner.