You’ve likely had a headache at some point in your life. If you happen to be one of many Florida residents who suffer chronic stress or migraine headaches, you know how absolutely debilitating such conditions can be. Perhaps you’re one of the lucky ones, however, who can hardly recall a time when you’ve felt head discomfort. Maybe that’s why you got the feeling something was not right when a week or so passed after your car accident and your head was still hurting.
When you’re not a person who is used to head pain, any discomfort to that area of your body or injury that may affect your brain may be more easily noticed since you suddenly experience pain where there usually is none. Not all brain injury symptoms are immediately apparent, however. That’s why many emergency room doctors fail to diagnose this type of injury the first time around.
Three levels of brain injury and how to recognize the symptoms
If you were in a car accident, took a bad fall or suffered a sports injury, your brain may have borne the impact of blunt force trauma to your head. After reviewing the following information, you may be able to determine whether your current condition warrants another trip to the doctor’s office to see if your problem is more serious that you initially thought:
- If you are able to maintain consciousness and are mostly coherent, your condition may not fit the category of serious or catastrophic. However, even at this milder level of injury, you may experience head pain, memory loss or confusion.
- A moderate brain injury often presents symptoms that include extreme lethargy and fatigue, temporary loss of consciousness, and excessive sleepiness with the ability to respond by opening eyes if external stimulation takes place, such someone calling your name, shaking your arm to awaken you, etc.
- Any loss of consciousness lasting longer than six hours is a definite sign of serious and perhaps life-threatening brain trauma.
If your head banged against a car window in a collision, or you took a heavy hit in a football game, you may have a concussion and not realize it right away. Other symptoms in the list above often signify brain swelling or bleeding, both of which place your life at immediate risk.
If you are already at home and have been recuperating for a week or more after the accident that caused your injury, you likely do not have a life-threatening condition; however, you may still have a brain injury that requires immediate medical attention. Such care is quite expensive, which is why many Florida accident victims seek justice against those whose negligence caused their injuries.