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The devastating costs of traumatic brain injuries

When someone experiences a serious brain injury, their life can change in unanticipated ways. Tens of thousands of dollars spent for surgery, rehabilitation and around-the-clock care accounts for only a small part of the struggle that injured individuals and their families face.

Even minor brain injuries can have lifelong consequences that make normally easy tasks difficult. People who have suffered traumatic brain injuries need our support. They need top-notch medical care, emotional support and the financial means to become as independent as possible again. Here are some things you should know about traumatic brain injuries and the individuals who experience them.

Understanding TBIs

Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are serious injuries often caused by accidents and assaults. They fall into two main buckets: Open head injuries and closed head injuries.

Open head injuries: Open head injuries (also called penetrating head injuries or open brain injuries) occur when an object penetrates the skull and enters the brain. The object can be anything from a section of a car, a projectile, or even the skull itself. Often when someone fractures their skull, a part of the broken skull penetrates the brain. Open head injuries can cause severe damage that varies depending on the part of the brain affected.

Closed head injuries: Unlike open head injuries, closed head injuries do not involve an object entering the brain, but they can be just as severe. Closed head injuries occur from blows to the head or sudden motions that slam the brain against the skull. Concussions are an example of this.

Who is affected?

More than one million people report traumatic brain injuries every year in the United States, and many more go unreported.

Males ages 14 to 25 suffer the most TBIs, largely due to their propensity for risk taking. Young children and older adults, who are more likely to be injured during a fall, are also at risk of TBIs. That said, anyone can be the victim of a TBI. From sports injuries to falls to car accidents, a wide range of events can cause traumatic brain injuries.

Finding and offering support

Individuals who have suffered brain injuries need hope. The daily challenges they face are devastating, and a kind word can go a long way in helping them toward recovery. They may need to relearn daily activities that were once basic to them, including talking and walking. Other physical and emotional challenges include unconsciousness, stroke or seizures, difficulty thinking/loss of cognitive ability and memory, stress disorders, depression, anxiety, paralysis and even death.

If you or a close loved one is the victim, who has suffered a TBI, a personal injury lawsuit may be your best option to receive the compensation you need to begin the healing process. A lawyer experienced in complex injury cases can help you protect your rights.

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