While working on receiving compensation for your recent car accident, you must also remember to take care of yourself and recover from your sustained injuries. Keep in mind that some injuries, like a traumatic brain injury (TBI), can take several days before they start showing symptoms.

Knowing whether or not your need to be examined for a TBI is an important step in determining how much compensation you should seek after your accident.

Symptoms of a mild TBI

According to Mayo Clinic, some common physical and mental symptoms of a mild brain injury include the following:

  • Poor balance
  • Blacking out for seconds or minutes
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Sudden shifts in mood

A mild TBI can also result in sensory issues such as light or sound sensitivity and changes to your sense of smell.

Moderate-to-severe symptoms

With a moderate-to-severe brain injury, symptoms can include all those mentioned above in addition to the following:

  • Seizures
  • Chronic nausea
  • Slurred speech
  • Pupil dilation
  • Persistent disorientation
  • Difficulty waking up

These more serious symptoms can start to manifest hours or even days after your accident, so keep a close watch on your own health. It’s also a good idea to consider asking someone to monitor you for the development of any new symptoms.

Responding to a TBI

If you notice any of the above listed symptoms in the hours or days following your incident, have a friend or family member drive you to the emergency room as soon as possible. Because time is of the essence for brain injuries, you may not be able to afford to wait for a regular appointment with your primary care physician. Even mild TBI symptoms require prompt medical attention to minimize lasting repercussions.

Potential complications

Along with TBI symptoms, make sure to educate yourself on potential TBI complications following an accident. For instance, untreated symptoms can lead to a coma, vegetative state or even brain death. Fluid can fill the brain cavity, which may trigger brain swelling. A person with a TBI could also sustain serious infections.

Just because you might be free of broken bones or other visible injuries after your car accident does not necessarily mean you are in the clear yet. Make sure to monitor your health closely and alert your doctor to any new symptoms as soon as they develop.