- The brain controls all body functions, and it is one of the essential organs.
- When the head gets injured, the brain might also get affected and can cause mild to severe damage.
- The injuries that cause severe damage and affects brain function are called traumatic brain injuries (TBIs).
The brain is involved in many bodily functions like processing sensory information, regulating blood pressure, releasing hormones, and other vital functions. The brain is a delicate and sensitive organ, and the skull protects it. Several activities and incidents like falls, sports injuries, and vehicular accidents can injure the brain. These injuries can cause mild concussions or severe brain damage.
The following are the different head and brain injuries and their effects.
Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs)
They are brain injuries caused by a violent blow to the head or objects penetrating inside the brain. TBIs are further classified as:
- Closed head injury – an injury that does not penetrate the skull
- Open brain injury – an injury that penetrates the tissues of the brain
Closed Head Injury
A concussion is a type of a closed head injury. It is the most common type of traumatic brain injury, and it is described as a blow to the head that could result in a brain’s cerebral malfunction. Most concussions cause mild or no apparent damage to the brain, but some concussions can cause permanent brain damage.
When you get a blow on the head, depending on its impact, it can make the brain go to the opposite side, leading to injuries. The signs that you had concussions include blurry vision, confusion, dizziness, temporary forgetfulness, headache, loss of consciousness, nausea, and vomiting.
Recovering from concussions will depend on the extent of the damage incurred. If the brain is not destroyed but only injured, the healing process will be faster and easier.
Open Brain Injury
The skull can also get cracked, dented, and damaged. When these sharp bone fragments press unto the brain, it can cause bleeding. The signs that you have a skull fracture are bloody or clear fluid discharge from the ears or nose.
A bleeding brain needs immediate medical attention. The blood in the brain has nowhere to drain and clump together to form hematoma, affecting the surrounding tissue and blood supply of other parts of the brain. You may be experiencing hematoma if you have headaches, loss of balance, and frequent vomiting.
Diagnosing traumatic brain injury includes knowing the patient’s medical history, doing a physical exam focusing on the brain function, and doing some tests like computed tomography scan and magnetic resonance imaging.
Effects of Brain Injuries
Brain injuries often damage patients’ memory. You might lose recent memories for a while, but it can also return quickly. Other times, severe brain injuries can cause permanent loss of memories.
Traumatic brain injuries can also affect the behavior and moods of people. Those who had brain injuries felt agitated, depressed, and not their usual self. These behavioral problems can resolve after some time, but sometimes it can go on for extended periods.
When you had a brain injury it can also cause dizziness, loss of balance, and loss of visual depth perception. These conditions can last for a short time, or it can last a lifetime.
Brain injuries can also increase your risk of developing brain disorders like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.