Traumatic Brain Injuries in Children

January 18, 2016

Does a Traumatic Brain Injury Have the Same Effect on a Child as it Does on an Adult?

A traumatic brain injury is a medical emergency, and it is an injury that can happen at any age. However, although the injuries and symptoms may be the same, a traumatic brain injury (TBI) in a child is actually different in many ways from a head or brain injury in an adult. If you are a parent or caregiver, here are some of the most important things you should understand about why brain injuries are a particular concern in children.

Communicating Symptoms of a Concussion or Other Brain Injury

A child might experience the same symptoms of a brain injury as an adult, including:

  • Dizziness
  • Blurred vision
  • Impaired vision
  • Headache
  • Disorientation
  • Emotional changes

However, these symptoms can be more difficult to detect because children often have an inability to express exactly how they are feeling and where the pain is. For example, a toddler doesn’t necessarily have the words to communicate a feeling like “disorientation,” and it can be extremely difficult for a parent to determine if a baby feels “dizzy.”

Young Brains Are Still Developing

A child’s brain is still developing. Therefore, a concussion or brain injury can have more devastating effects on a child than on an adult. When an adult sustains a concussion in an accident, the effects often show up within weeks of the injury. On the other hand, when a child suffers the same injury, it may take months or even years for all of the effects to show. And, even then, the effects of a brain injury on a child’s development can be unpredictable.

The Long-Term Effects and Care of a TBI in a Child

Children, because they are still developing and have their whole lives still ahead of them, can suffer from different or more severe long-term issues after a brain injury. Studies of the long-term effects of TBI in children show that:

  • Many children with brain injuries struggle with adapting to new, socially complex environments that require behavioral changes. This may include difficulty in adjusting to new situations, like moving on to the next grade in school, learning a new subject, or dealing with changes in family dynamics.
  • Children with brain injuries often suffer mental deficits, such as difficulty processing information, impaired judgment, and delayed reasoning.

Another long-term concern is that, over a lifetime, a child’s brain injury can also be much more expensive to treat. A child may need support and care into adulthood, including medical care, help with school and daily activities, and other ongoing therapies that help make an injured child’s life as full and comfortable as possible.

Getting Help When Negligence Causes a Child’s Brain Injury

Sometimes, traumatic brain injuries are caused by unavoidable accidents. However, many people are injured every year in accidents caused by the recklessness, carelessness, or negligence of others. If you or your child suffered a TBI or concussion injury due to the carelessness or negligence of another party, you should know that the law may allow you to seek financial compensation and hold the negligent person or company responsible for what happened.

If you have questions, contact our experienced lawyers today at Lane Brown today at 312-332-1400 to schedule your free case evaluation. Our personal injury attorneys will examine your case, answer your questions, explain your rights, and help you fight for the compensation you deserve.

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