After a car accident, the symptoms of a brain injury may occur right away, but it may take days or even weeks for symptoms to present. Symptoms can range in severity, and they do not always coincide with intense, acute pain.
Here are common examples of symptoms resulting from a brain injury that you should be aware of.
Physical and neurological symptoms
In addition to episodic or intermittent headaches, people who have experienced a mild or severe brain injury may exhibit physical and neurological symptoms:
- Loss of balance
- Blurred vision
- Sensitivity to light
- Impaired motor function
These symptoms are common to concussions, but they may also accompany more severe conditions such as Diffuse Axonal Injury. A DAI occurs when a forceful and rapid movement of the head or a blow to the skull tears axonal fibers, neurons responsible for regulating brain activity.
Psychological and cognitive symptoms
A traumatic injury can interfere with your brain’s ability to process information. You may have delayed reactions to various stimuli in your environment or have difficulty understanding and retaining new information.
A brain injury could also cause mood swings. Accident victims sometimes experience dramatic changes in thought patterns or have increased anxiety and irritability. After a collision, people may understandably dismiss how they are feeling as stress due to the accident. However, these psychological symptoms could be a sign of an underlying medical problem.
Ultimately, it is important to seek care immediately following a car accident. Prompt medical attention may help to limit the harm resulting from a traumatic brain injury and facilitate effective treatment.