Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a serious injury to the brain that can result in life-long consequences. Known as the “invisible injury,” TBI’s symptoms don’t always present right away, and can sometimes take weeks or months after an accident to appear. Individuals affected by TBI typically suffer from cognitive issues including inaccurate judgment, lack of communication, memory problems, and more. If you’ve experienced a traumatic brain injury, learn about your road to recovery, including whether TBI will heal on its own.
How Does Traumatic Brain Injury Happen?
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) occurs when the head is subjected to a direct external impact, such as where the head is struck by an object. Injury can also occur with rapid acceleration and deceleration. Depending on how the impact occurred, the head can start to move while the brain resists, leaving gaps in the skull. Along with the damage caused by the brain impacting against the skull, these gaps form a low-pressure area into which vapor bubbles form. When the brain moves back and the bubbles collapse, the brain can be injured.
Will a Traumatic Brain Injury Heal on Its Own?
Medical specialists and rehabilitation professionals have made a common prediction over the years that the brain has a limited ability to heal itself from a traumatic injury over roughly a two-year period.
When a brain is injured, millions of neural connections are damaged and cannot regenerate the way that skin can heal after a wound or cut. However, recent research indicates the brain can grow new cells and networks to bypass broken ones. Studies have shown that neuroplasticity and rehabilitation are ways that the brain can compensate for the damage by creating new neural pathways. Treatment such as rehab and therapeutic activities can stimulate the brain and train the existing cells to carry out its functions:
- Occupational therapy to re-learn day-to-day activities and skills
- Physical therapy to improve mobility, walking, and balance
- Psychotherapy for physical and mental wellness
- Speech therapy to practice communication skills
While this may be the case for some patients, it’s certainly not for all.
Seek Treatment Immediately After a Brain Injury
The time period immediately after a brain injury, including the amount of time that passes between the accident and when the patient receives treatment, plays a major role in determining the severity and duration of the injury. Unfortunately, since many TBI symptoms do not present themselves for a long time, it may be hard to identify exactly when your injury occurred.
If you suspect you received a traumatic brain injury in an accident, we’re here to fight for you. Contact Scarlett Law Group at (415) 688-2176 for a free case consultation today!