Falls, automotive accidents and workplace accidents can all cause traumatic brain injuries.
Unfortunately, there are many outdated and incorrect beliefs surrounding these injuries, and some of them can do serious harm.
Myth: If you are still conscious, the injury is not that serious
While the loss of consciousness can indicate a serious head injury, it is possible to have a traumatic brain injury and never lose consciousness. You may even walk away from an accident feeling fine only to have symptoms appear hours or days later. The only way to truly determine the extent of your head injury is to seek medical attention.
Myth: Doctors can always find TBI on a CT scan or MRI
To diagnose a brain injury, doctors must evaluate many factors, including:
- How the injury occurred
- How much force was involved
- Whether you lost consciousness
- Your ability to move and speak
- Your ability to understand and follow directions
While your doctor may order a CT scan, MRI or x-ray to look for bleeding or skull fractures, these tools can not detect every possible brain injury.
Myth: A person with TBI should not go to sleep
Many people believe that a person with a concussion or other brain injury should stay awake or avoid sleeping for more than an hour at a time immediately following the injury. In reality, rest is important for any injured body part, including your brain. Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, you should get plenty of rest after a brain injury.
The effects of a traumatic brain injury can last a lifetime. If you have experienced an accident and suspect you might have a brain injury, prompt medical attention is essential.