Concussion vs Traumatic Brain Injury
Many of our clients ask us what the difference is between a concussion and a traumatic brain injury. A concussion is a type of brain injury or TBI, which stands for traumatic brain injury. A concussion can be caused by an impact to the head, as well has a jolt or rapid movement of the head as a result of something impacting another part of the body. The impact and the jolting movement can cause the brain to hit the inside of the skull or rotate or twist within the skull. As a result, you may experience brain bleeding, changes in brain chemistry, or permanent damage to brain cells.
As we have learned through all of the publicity traumatic brain injuries have received in the sports world, concussions are very serious injuries that can cause lifelong problems or even death. Often times, the more severe symptoms don’t show up until many years have passed. That’s what makes TBIs particularly scary.
It’s important to note that a serious brain injury or concussion does not always involve a loss of consciousness, visible marks on the head, or impact to the head. Sometimes, you can experience a traumatic brain injury and may not even know it because the initial symptoms are subtle. Additionally, it can be hard to notice the changes you’re experiencing after a traumatic brain injury, but the people around you may be fully aware that something is wrong. That’s why we ask people to review our Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Checklist with a loved one if they feel like they’ve suffered a concussion or brain injury. The people around us often know when something is wrong, even when we don’t.
Are Concussions Serious?
Sometimes a concussion may be called “mild traumatic brain injury” or a “mild brain injury.” We believe this is a poor way to describe a concussion because it gives the impression that it’s not that serious. However, the real meaning behind the word “mild” is that the traumatic brain injury is not immediately life-threatening. In reality, there is nothing mild about a concussion. It’s a serious brain injury.
One dangerous aspect of concussions is that they can be very hard to detect. People do not always lose consciousness when they suffer a concussion. Additionally, there’s not always a visible mark of impact, and people can suffer a concussion even when there is no impact. A rapid jolt or movement can cause the brain to slam into the inside walls of the skull, which can cause a brain injury. In the worst cases, the brain can be bruised on the front and the back as a result of impacting the inside of the skull. The jarring of the brain against the inside walls of the skull can cause shearing and tearing of the internal lining, tissues, and blood vessels, which can cause internal bleeding, as well as bruising or swelling of the brain.
How Do People Get a Concussion?
As we mentioned before, sports have brought a lot of attention to traumatic brain injuries and concussions. Brain injuries were overlooked for way too long, but that all seems to be changing, especially in the last 20 years. In the personal injury world, we see clients who have suffered TBIs all the time. Usually, people suffer concussions or “mild traumatic brain injuries” as a result of the following accidents:
- Car accidents;
- Semi-truck accidents;
- Slip and fall accidents;
- Trip and fall accidents;
- Motorcycle accidents;
- Bicycle accidents;
- Rideshare accidents; and
- Pedestrian accidents.
However, this is not an exhaustive list of all the ways people could suffer a traumatic brain injury. We also see folks with traumatic brain injuries because of amusement park accidents and boating accidents. Any event that could cause impact or whiplash can cause a person to experience a concussion or TBI.
What Are the Symptoms of a Concussion?
There are many different symptoms of concussions and brain injuries. Some of the more common symptoms are:
- Nausea or vomiting;
- Difficulty with comprehension;
- Irritability or agitation;
- Difficulty speaking;
- Difficulty concentrating or focusing; and
- Changes in sleep patterns.
These are only a few traumatic brain injury symptoms. These symptoms could be delayed. As we mentioned, a majority of TBI symptoms may not manifest for weeks or months, sometimes even years. That’s why you should seek medical treatment as soon as possible if you believe you’ve suffered a concussion or other TBI. The TBI symptoms you’re experiencing after a concussion could be a sign of post-concussive syndrome.
Some traumatic brain injuries could be fatal if left untreated, especially if the brain is bleeding or swollen. Thus, it’s critical to seek treatment and follow the doctor’s recommendations. When you have suffered a TBI, your brain can be extremely sensitive to additional impact. As a result, a subsequent impact to the head while a person is healing from an existing TBI, which is sometimes called “second impact syndrome,” can cause rapid and uncontrollable swelling in the brain tissue. This can cause permanent disability and even death. Therefore, you should be extra careful not to engage in dangerous physical activity after you have suffered a traumatic brain injury.
Schedule a FREE Legal Consultation with an Orlando Traumatic Brain Injury Attorney.
You may have suffered a brain injury if you were in an accident and experienced an impact to your head or if you experienced a jolting movement of your head. Additionally, it’s common for people to suffer a brain injury and not be aware of it. That’s why we developed our Traumatic Brain Injury Checklist, which you can download for free on our website.If you or someone you love has suffered a concussion or other brain injury as a result of another person’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation. If so, we’re here to help, and we offer free legal consultations. Additionally, at our law firm, attorneys do the consultations, not intake folks or customer service reps. All you have to do is schedule your FREE legal consultation with an Orlando, Florida brain injury attorney on our website, or you can call and schedule your consultation at (321) 352-7588. We're here when you need us.