Concussions happen more often than people think. And they are not limited to sports. Did you know that you can get a concussion even if you are involved in a minor accident? Today, a car accident lawyer at Silverthorne Attorneys is going to go over the warning signs of a concussion as well as what to do and not to do after a concussion. The first thing any auto accident attorney will tell you is to see a doctor right away. Especially if you have hit your head in an accident.
Car Accident Lawyer | Concussion Warning Signs
I, myself, have gotten a concussion. However, it was when I was five and I fell off the top bunk while sleeping. There is more to a concussion than just hitting your head. A concussion is what is called a “functional brain injury.” This means that at the time of the concussion, your brain is not severely damaged. Concussions are generally caused by a bump, blow, or jolting of the head. For instance, if you hit your head on the steering wheel or the side panel of your vehicle in an accident. Common warning signs include:
- Nausea and vomiting that does not subside;
- Enlarged pupils or uneven pupils;
- Unusual behavior that is out of character;
- Constant headaches;
- Inability to recognize people or places;
- Slurred speech
And these are just a few out of many to look for. If you believe that you or a family member have suffered from a concussion, seek medical attention right away. The longer you wait to get treatment, the worse it can get. Don’t just assume that your symptoms will subside quickly. We have seen cases where it takes people weeks, sometimes months to fully recover from the aftermath of a concussion.
Important Steps After a Concussion
Below, our car accident lawyer has put together some steps you can take after a concussion that can help alleviate your symptoms. We want to be very clear, we are not medical professionals. And our first piece of advice is to seek medical attention right away. Furthermore, listen to what your doctors are telling you insofar as treatment is concerned. Not only because it is what will help you get better, but it will also help your claim.
- Identify any triggers that increase the intensity of your symptoms. It is very important during this time to recognize the things that aggravate your symptoms. This is because it can delay your recovery. For example, if loud noises and bright lights bother you more than they have in the past, try to avoid situations where you will be surrounded by a lot of noise. And if you need to, wear a hat and sunglasses.
- Sleep. Did you know that our brains recover while we are sleeping? Sleep is the most important recovery tool when you have a concussion. It gives your brain a chance to rest from any stimulation that may be aggravating. Minimize any distractions, such as TV, music or your phone when you are trying to sleep. This added stimulation keeps your brain from being able to recover adequately.
- Rest your body. Try not to exert yourself too much. While you are recovering from your concussion, try to avoid anything that will significantly increase your heart rate. This is until you have been cleared by your doctors. Some light activity may be helpful to your recovery. These may include walking, riding a stationary bike; this is only as long as these activities do not make symptoms worse.
Be smart about your recovery. Not just for the settlement but because it is important for your overall health. There have been studies that suggest that concussions have contributed to long-term brain dysfunction and damage.
Auto Accident Attorney | Things to Avoid
In order to make sure you make a complete recovery, do your best to try to avoid the following:
- Excessive physical activity
- As stated above, an increased heart rate can make your symptoms much worse;
- Strenuous mental activity
- These include but are not limited to: reading, working on the computer, playing video games, spending too much time on the phone. This is because these overstimulate your brain. And during this time, you don’t want to do anything that will overstimulate you;
- Driving too soon
- Make sure all of your mental faculties are intact. Sometimes concussions can affect reaction times which can actually increase the risk of an accident;
- Be careful if you decide to take over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication
- This is because they may actually increase your risk of bleeding.
- Also, these medications may mask symptoms, which can lead to worse symptoms when they wear off.
Most people who suffer from a concussion due to an accident are able to go back to normal life within a week or two. As long as you are taking care of yourself and taking the steps necessary to get better. However, others can have long-term problems either from the concussion itself or from an injury to the surrounding soft tissue due to the accident.
If you have been in an accident and are suffering from injuries due to a concussion, contact us to discuss your case. Our car accident attorneys have years of experience helping people who have been injured due to the negligent actions of another.