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Many people suffer a wide range of brain impairments after they suffer head trauma, chemical exposure or birth defects. Those who exhibit serious effects after an automobile accident, a fall or another kind of accident may have suffered irreversible damage, requiring significant long-term care and the inability to maintain an income or support themselves. Memory and concentration problems are two of a wide range of issues experienced by TBI sufferers.

John Cooper and the team at Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers represent clients in accidents who have suffered serious brain injuries and need compensation for comprehensive and extensive care in Virginia, North Carolina and elsewhere. If a loved one shows cognitive deficits such as memory or concentration problems or has been diagnosed with some form of brain trauma, we can explain your legal options in a claim against the insurance company for the person or company who caused the traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Common Effects

A brain injury can lead to an impairment in a person’s intellectual ability. It can cause a wide array of symptoms and conditions, ranging from common learning disabilities to profound behavioral impairments associated with severe head injuries. Typically, a wide range of problems are indicative of reduced brain function.

The Main Types of Memory and Concentration Problems Suffered After a Brain Injury

The brain is very complicated. The issues you may suffer after a TBI often depend on which area of the brain sustains damage. Some common problems after a brain injury include:

Language and Communications Problems

People who suffered a traumatic brain injury may experience a wide range of communication issues such as:

  • Difficulty finding the right words in a conversation.
  • Rambling speech that gets off topic.
  • Trouble beginning or following conversations or understanding what people are saying.
  • Difficulty mastering more complicated language skills and organizing their thoughts.
  • Problems reading the emotions of others and responding inappropriately to situations.
  • Difficulties communicating their feeings and thoughts using facial expressions. These may include tone, voice and body language.
  • Misunderstanding irreverence, jokes and sarcasm.
  • Becoming easily distracted.

Issues With Judgment and Problem Solving

  • Failure to recognize the existence of a problem, which is the initial step in problem solving.
  • Issues analyzing information or changing the way they are thinking.
  • Making rash decisions without considering the consequences.
  • Being unable to find the best solution to a problem and getting hung up on one solution.
  • Problems Remembering, Learning and Retaining New Information
  • Difficulty learning and remembering new information, appointments and events.
  • An inability to recall events that occurred several weeks or months before a TBI.
  • An inability to remember or recall conversations or entire events. On occasions, the mind will attempt to fill gaps with events that did not happen. Often TBI suffers will remember events from years ago but be unable to recall recent ones.
  • Problems Planning Ahead
  • Difficulty planning a day and scheduling multiple appointments.
  • Problems organizing tasks requiring multiple steps like shopping, laundry and cooking.

Slower Reaction Times

  • Taking longer to do basic tasks like dressing and getting ready in the morning.
  • Failing to react quickly to traffic hazards, lights and signals when driving. People who suffer from TBIs should not drive until their visual skills and reaction times have been tested.
  • A Lack of Self-Awareness Leading to Inappropriate Behavior
  • Lacking boundaries and awareness of others’ space and feeling. TBI sufferers may have a cognitive deficit which makes them unaware of social boundaries.
  • Denying they have problems, even when these issues are obvious to other people
  • Saying insensitive things or hurtful things, acting out of place, and failing to consider the wishes and feelings of others. A TBI can wreck family relationships.

Signs of Memory and Concentration Problems

There are a number of ways that experts diagnose memory and concentration problems. A few indications of impaired brain function include:

  • Impaired short-term memory
  • Reduced reading and mathematical comprehension
  • Reduced motor skills
  • Difficulty with auditory learning
  • Difficulty with verbal communication
  • DepressionAnxiety

The severity of these conditions corresponds to the nature of the brain injury suffered or the source of the issue. Some signs can be minor or subtle, while others are much more obvious and profound.

Further information about problems after a brain injury and how family members can help is provided by the Brain Injury Association of Virginia.

Given the complexity of a brain injury, you should always get a detailed medical examination if you have suffered a blow to the head after a car, truck or motorcycle accident, a slip and fall, or an injury on the sports field. You should not accept a settlement before the full extent of your injuries are known. Some memory and concentration problems will only become apparent later on and may impact your job, your education or your family life.

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