A car accident can be a very stressful time for those involved, especially if you’ve hurt your head. Dealing with other drivers, the police and insurance companies may cause you to overlook your own health and recovery.
If you have any of the below persistent symptoms after your car accident, you should see your doctor to be tested for a traumatic brain injury.
Any damage to the brain is significant and even milder injuries can result in lifelong impacts on your quality of life.
Are you sleeping a lot after a car accident?
If after your accident you find yourself seriously dozing off during the day, you should be concerned. It’s normal to feel tired after an accident – it’s a stressful time and you need to recover. If the tiredness extends into the weeks and months to follow, you may be suffering from a traumatic brain injury. Finding it especially difficult to wake up in the mornings is a further sign of a head injury.
Are you experiencing vertigo after a car accident?
Common injuries in car accidents, like whiplash or head trauma, can cause short-term vertigo. If you still find yourself feeling dizzy, off-balance or motion-sick following your accident, you should see your doctor. Traumatic brain injuries often cause vertigo in sufferers and without treatment your symptoms may worsen.
Has your personality changed after a car accident?
Feelings of shock, anger and anxiety are to be expected during and in the aftermath of a car accident. Emotionally you should return to normal as you recover. If you notice you’re acting differently after the accident, your brain may have suffered an injury. Behaviour changes such as increased aggression, depression, anxiety and difficulty with social cues are all possible changes stemming from a traumatic brain injury.
Is your vision blurred after a car accident?
Blurred vision is one of several physical symptoms of a brain injury experienced after a car accident. Headaches and stiffness in your neck are two more. If your body doesn’t seem to be recovering after the accident, speak to your doctor.
Have you suffered memory loss after a car accident?
Everyone experiences some degree of memory loss naturally – you forget your wallet or keys when going to work. If you can’t remember large periods of time, or important information like your phone number or address, this is not normal. Memory loss is a sign of a traumatic brain injury.
What should I do if I’m experiencing symptoms after a car accident?
If you experience symptoms like those above or other health concerns after a car accident, you should book an appointment with your doctor.
Early diagnosis of a traumatic brain injury can allow you to begin treatment earlier, giving you a better chance of making a full recovery.
Without treatment traumatic brain injuries can lead to long-term illnesses, including epilepsy and neurodegeneration. There is also an increased risk of Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson’s disease and Chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).
Written by Shine Lawyers. Last modified: November 11, 2020.