Traumatic brain injury is one of the most common injuries after a car accident or a slip and fall. Any blow to the head or a jarring shake can cause TBI.
Cases of TBI can range from mild to severe. Its symptoms may be subtle, and signs pointing to TBI do not always appear away.
Mild traumatic brain injury
The National Institutes of Health notes that each case of traumatic brain injury will have differing symptoms. However, most people suffering from mild TBI report the following signs:
- Lightheadedness or dizziness
- Confusion, tiredness or sleepiness
- Memory loss, concentration and attention difficulties
- Sensitivity to light and sound
- Loss of consciousness for a few seconds or minutes
Physical signs also include ringing in the ears, a bad taste in the mouth and nausea or vomiting. Some patients report psychological shifts, as well, such as changes in sleep habits and behavioral or mood changes.
Moderate to severe TBI
In addition to suffering symptoms of mild TBI, those with a moderate or severe case may also experience:
- Worsening headache
- Slurred speech
- Repeated nausea and vomiting
- Numbness or tingling in the arms or legs
- Enlarged pupils
Sufferers of moderate to severe TBI also report longer periods of consciousness loss, convulsions or seizures and significant changes to behavior and sleep patterns.
TBI signs in children
The Mayo Clinic provides additional information about TBI symptoms in infants or children. Because very young children may not communicate pain or confusion, it is critical to watch for alterations in behavior. Children who suffer from TBI might be easily irritated, cry persistently or exhibit different sleeping and eating habits.