Concussion Awareness: Don’t Ignore “Common” Symptoms After an Accident
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When a car accident happens, it is a whirlwind of commotion. One moment a driver is sitting at a red light on the way to run errands, and the next minute a car crashes into the back of them. Not only can this bend the metal frame of a car or crush the bumper, it can affect the body in so many dangerous ways. According to FLHSMV, there have already been over 680 car accidents in Kissimmee this year. It is important to know how an accident can affect the body including the neck, lower back, and even the brain. Many times, the effects on the brain after an accident can go overlooked.
One type of traumatic brain injury is called “non-penetrating”, when some outside force causes the brain inside of the skull to move. An example of this would be a car accident, causing a person’s head to go back and forth very quickly. This can damage the white matter of the brain.
White matter is a part of the brain made of bundles of nerve cells that carry electrical impulses. Think of them as wires that connect parts of the brain together and carry important information. When there is trauma to the brain, these bundles can get stretched or torn, interrupting communication between the cells and can cause post-concussive symptoms.
Severe traumatic brain injury such as bleeding, brain swelling, and prolonged loss of consciousness are all possibilities after a trauma. However, it was found that more than 75% of brain injuries are considered mild, many of which are caused by motor vehicle accidents. Although most people recover and improve within three months, about 20% of people suffer from continued symptoms. These symptoms include memory problems, depression and cognitive difficulties for six months or more. The term “mild” may be misleading that the injury is not something to worry about. Symptoms from concussions can affect the person, their relationships with family and friends, as well as their performance at work. One of the issues with concussion symptoms found in a study on mild traumatic brain injury, is the lack of follow up after the initial injury. After an accident with multiple injuries, the focus primarily goes to more apparent injuries such as cuts, fractures and organ damage. It was found that after the patient was discharged from the hospital, many people never followed up with a healthcare provider. By ignoring these symptoms, they never address the long-lasting symptoms of the concussion or brain injury. Symptoms like fatigue, headaches, confusion, and emotional distress can be overlooked and considered “normal” after an accident.
Although these symptoms may be common after an accident, they are not normal or necessary to suffer from. A neurological exam done by a chiropractor in Kissimmee. an assess motor and sensory skills, the function of cranial nerves, and evaluate how the damage could affect many other parts of the body. Based on the doctor’s findings, they may recommend different brain scans to be able to see how much damage has occurred in the brain tissue. Based upon the findings from the exam and scans, the patient may be referred to a neurological specialist for further testing and treatment. At Complete Care, we believe it is important to raise awareness of these symptoms and urge people to seek medical attention to help prevent long term damage. If you or a loved one has been in an accident and have seen the signs of post-concussive symptoms, make an appointment with a chiropractor in Kissimmee for an evaluation. Make sure to pay attention to any new signs and symptoms during the days and weeks after the accident. Prevent future injury or prolonged symptoms by getting checked out right away.
If you would like more information or want to make an appointment, call us.