February 10, 2015
Every year more than two million Americans suffer a traumatic brain injury (TBI) The majority of these injuries will be diagnosed as “mild TBI”. Between 10-15% of these so-called “mild” TBI injuries will result in some degree of permanent disability. Those who suffer from these permanent injuries will, on average, die sooner, earn less over a lifetime, and suffer more marital and family instability than the non-injured population. Their suicide rate will also be higher.
I would urge everyone concerned with TBI to read Michael Paul Mason’s excellent and powerful book, HEAD CASES. You will get a compelling picture of the personal devastation any moderate to severe brain injury can cause in a person’s life. However, even the so-called “mild” TBI can have catastrophic consequences. The loss of cognitive functioning, memory loss, disruption of personal relationships and the ensuing depression can tear families apart, result in job loss and can cut a person’s potential for achievement.
Our legal system provides compensation for people whose TBI is caused by the carelessness of another: the inattentive or fatigued truck driver, the store with a dangerous condition on its floor, or other careless actor. However it is important to be aware of the time limitations involved with respect to making a claim for legal copensation for a TBI. Here in Tennessee our Statute of Limitations is ONE YEAR from the event causing the injury.
I have written elsewhere that TBI is often a process, not an event. The full consequences of a brain injury may not become manifest for weeks or months after the injury event. Therefore you should be aware of the signs and symptoms that may accompany a TBI so that you can act promptly to protect your rights.These signs may include memory loss, confusion, dizziness, headaches, impulsivity, lability (uncontrolled tearfulness), inability to concentrate and depression.
Ignorance is the greatest enemy of the victim of a TBI. Not knowing the scope and seriousness of the problem inhibits action and can result in the loss of help that, once lost, is lost forever. Keep reading these blogs to stay informed, proactive and protected!