Effects of Traumatic Brain Injuries

Updated on February 5, 2020

When a jolt, blow, bump, or any other injury damages your brain, it might result in a traumatic brain injury or TBI. Any violent or intense strike to your head can cause it. It can also occur because an object pierced your brain tissue. 

Temporary damage to brain cells may result in a mild TBI. More serious traumatic brain injuries, though, can cause bruising, torn tissues, as well as bleeding. Long term complications are common because of these injuries, while others, unfortunately, face death.

How Do Doctors Diagnose A Traumatic Brain Injury?

A neurological examination gets performed to diagnose a traumatic brain injury. The doctor will ask a patient about the experience and the symptoms of TBI. The mental and physical reflexes of the patient will undergo a test. These procedures will help the doctor understand the injury and how severe the damage is so that appropriate treatment and medication can be provided.

If the need arises, the physician also requests magnetic resonance imaging, computerized tomography, X-ray, and other tests. Such examinations produce pictures of the head and brain to show if there’s blood clotting, bruising, bleeding, and skull fracture, among others.

Traumatic brain injury can cause long-lasting effects, some of which are even permanent. Adapting and adjusting to a new reality is essential for patients since life challenges are surely going to surface later on despite the possibility of recovery and rehabilitation.

This post takes a more comprehensive look at the effects of traumatic brain injuries. Learn more about them below.

1. Motor Deficits

Motor deficits or life-long disabilities may result from moderate to severe traumatic brain injury in many patients. It means losing mental or physical function because of brain damage. 

Some of the motor deficits and disabilities that a person who suffered from TBI may experience include difficulty thinking and remembering, the inability to recognize a thing based on touch, finding it hard to button a shirt, and other motor skills. 

They may also face problems with vision, moving, or carrying objects, as well as find it hard to walk, talk, or swallow food. Uncontrolled muscle movements are also frequent due to muscle stiffness, leading to paralysis. 

2. Sensory Problems

As already mentioned above, sensory problems are also common in individuals who suffered from TBI. Ringing in the ears, blurred vision, inability to smell, a bad taste, as well as sensitivity to sound or light, are the symptoms that may surface.

3. Socialization Problems

People who suffered from TBI may also find it difficult to socialize with others. Thus, making and keeping professional and personal relationships become a problem for them. 

Taking part in social activities is also something they’d find difficult. It’s also true even for leisure and recreational activities. All of these things would lead to a patient’s inability to go to school or keep a job. 

4. Problems With Speech And Language

Problems with writing and reading, difficulty understanding everyday language, as well as challenges with expressing or talking ideas are also common effects of a traumatic brain injury. 

They’re collectively known as aphasia, which you can categorize in two different types. First is the receptive aphasia, characterized by the difficulty of understanding a spoken word. The other one is expressive aphasia or the inability to get some words out even if the patient knows what they want to say. 

Other people who experience aphasia can perceive and comprehend written and spoken language but can’t repeat what they’ve seen or heard. 

What Is It Like To Live With TBI?

While some traumatic brain injuries can only cause temporary effects, others bring lasting problems. A patient suffering from TBI may experience the effects mentioned above for the rest of his life. 

Whether its mental, communicative, behavioral, or physical difficulties, a customized treatment or rehabilitation can be of great help so you could have a normal life as possible.

A support group is also going to be helpful so you could learn about some coping strategies and receive emotional support from people who experienced the same injuries as yours. You might find support groups near your place, or you can also search for them online or through social media.

Final Thoughts

Moderate to severe traumatic brain injuries will still remain a life-changing experience despite the advances in the technology behind early diagnosis and treatment of the condition. 

That said, the patient should receive all kinds of support from friends, family members, as well as caregivers, so they’ll find it a little bit more comfortable to cope with the long-term consequences of TBI. 

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