How TBIs Affect the Brain
A traumatic brain injury (TBI) can have a huge impact on how the brain works and greatly decrease a victim’s cognitive functioning as a result. It can take weeks, months, or years for the brain to heal from a TBI, and some victims never fully recover.
TBIs are some of the most serious injuries. If you suspect that you or someone you love has suffered a brain injury, seek treatment immediately.
Here’s a look at how TBIs affect the brain.
Damage to Nerve Cells
TBIs have such a profound impact on the function of the brain because, when neurons are damaged, they can no longer pass along information normally. As a result, a victim may experience one or more of a range of different problems with cognitive functioning, depending on which part of the brain was damaged.
Determining the Effects of a Brain Injury
The effects of a brain injury have a lot to do with the part of the brain in which the injury occurred. In most cases of TBI, multiple regions of the brain are affected. Severe brain injury can even affect the entire brain.
Frontal Lobe Injuries
Injury to the frontal lobe may affect the brain’s ability to do the following:
- Interact with the environment appropriately
- Make judgments or decisions
- Use language appropriately
- Plan, organize, or think ahead
This type of brain injury can also affect the ability of your brain to grapple with abstract concepts, solve problems, and reason, which can make it extremely difficult to manage day-to-day tasks.
Injury to the cerebellum affects the brain a little differently than injury to the frontal lobe. This type of injury may impair the brain’s ability to do the following:
- Coordinate voluntary movements
- Maintain physical balance
Parietal Lobe Injuries
Injury to the parietal lobe could affect the following:
- Touch perception
- Visual attention
Frontal Lobe Injuries
A frontal lobe injury can affect your ability to make goal-directed movements, manipulate objects, and act with multiple senses at the same time.
Other Brain Injuries
An Injury to the occipital lobe could cause changes in vision, while damage to the temporal lobe could lead to changes in the following:
- Hearing ability
- Face or object recognition
- New memory acquisition
- The ability to categorize objects
Temporal lobe injuries can also affect your ability to process verbal information, as well as your emotions.
Although all brain injuries are serious, whether the injury is minor or severe is dependent on a few factors. TBIs usually lead to permanent damage that can affect you for the rest of your life.
Moderate brain injuries can cause you to be unconscious from twenty minutes up to six hours. A severe brain injury typically results in loss of consciousness for longer than six hours.
The impact of a minor to severe brain injury depends on factors like the severity of the injury, the rate of physiological recovery, and the functions that are affected.
Other factors can include the resources the victim has available to them to help with recovery, as well as the areas of function that are not affected by the traumatic brain injury.
Traumatic Brain Injury Recovery
Many victims never fully recover from TBIs. This is just one of the reasons it’s so important to seek medical attention as soon as you suspect a brain injury, especially after an accident. Cases in which the duration of a coma or amnesia is shorter often have a better chance of ending in recovery.
Further, in patients who are over the age of sixty or under age two, there is a lower chance of recovery, even if their injury is the same as someone outside of their age group.
Recovery also involves different phases. Some of the elements that will determine how quickly you recover or whether you are able to recover at all include the severity of the injury and whether there is further brain damage. The ability to minimize stress and access effective rehabilitation are also important to your ability to recover.
How to Move Forward
Unfortunately, a TBI is an injury that is difficult to ever fully recover from. In instances where someone suffers a brain injury because of the negligence of another person or entity, it’s important to make sure the right person is held accountable.
Getting the right services and therapy for the brain injury is crucial to recovery, which isn’t always affordable or available for all victims.