Head injuries are common, yet overlooked injuries that can have lasting effects. People who hit their heads in car accidents may report immediate symptoms that subside quickly, while others suffer through debilitating headaches, mood changes and other cognitive issues. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) nearly 1.7 million people suffer such injuries each year. Moreover, emergency rooms receive 1.35 million visitors each year for concussions, with 275,000 requiring hospitalization.
TBI Causes: Car Accidents
Head-on collisions and rollover automobile accidents are the crashes most likely to cause serious head injuries. In these instances, a person’s head suffers a violent collision with part of a vehicle. With head-on collisions, passengers are more likely to hit their heads on dashboards or headrests. In rollover (or roof crush) accidents, tremendous pressure is put on passengers’ heads. Invariably passengers will be ejected from the car (especially if no seatbelts are worn).
Despite the debilitating effects of traumatic brain injuries, they are preventable. First, and foremost, drivers can best protect themselves by wearing seatbelts. Lap and shoulder restraints can help prevent drivers from coming into contact with other parts of the vehicle during a crash, and they can prevent ejections. Vehicles equipped with “side head curtain airbags” also help to prevent head injuries, for they protect occupants in side impact collisions. Further, vehicles with reinforced roofs are safer because they reduce the likelihood of roof crush injuries in rollover accidents.
If you have suffered a traumatic brain injury due to someone else’s negligence, you can recover money damages to compensate for lost wages, pain and suffering, medical expenses, as well as rehabilitation expenses. An experienced personal injury attorney can advise you of the value of your case and the likelihood of receiving compensation.
Ultimately, safe driving practices are the best way to prevent head injuries. Driving at safe speeds for the conditions, putting cell phones away and limiting other distractions help in reducing the risk of accidents.