Falls and car accidents are the leading causes of head injuries in America. These injuries account for millions of hospitalizations each year and can have severe lasting effects. Some symptoms of head injuries can take time to develop so it’s recommended you get medical attention as soon as possible after suffering a strong blow to the head.
If left untreated a head injury can drastically change your quality of life. AlaMed Injury Clinics is an ideal choice for head injury treatment in Birmingham. Our medical team will conduct a thorough examination of your injury and advise you on your best treatment options for a full recovery. Reach out to our Birmingham injury clinic, AlaMed Injury Clinics, today at (205) 963-0000 to outline your treatment plan.
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Types of Head Injuries
The most common types of head injuries people suffer from include:
Headaches are a common ailment that can be treated by AlaMed Injury Clinics. Headaches occur when you have pain in the face, head, or neck. If you suffered from severe headaches, you may be at increased risk of depression. At AlaMed Injury Clinics, we can treat the two most common forms of headaches. These are treated with pain mediation. The two common headaches that we treat are migraines and stress headaches.
Migraine headaches affect 848 million people each year. Migraine headaches are headache disorders. They occur in recurrent headaches. These headaches range from moderate to severe in terms of severity. Symptoms of migraines that you may have include nausea, sensitivities to light, sound, smell, and vomiting. Headaches in patients can affect one side of their head. They are pulsating in nature. Migraines have the tendency to last from a few hours to 3 days.
Stress headaches are types of headaches that cause pain from the lower back of the head. It can also affect the neck and other muscles. Stress headaches can cause pain on both sides of patients. Stress headaches can last from several minutes to 7 days. They can cause mild to moderate intensity. Another characteristic that we discovered about stress headaches at AlaMed Injury Clinics is that stress headaches are not aggravated by physical activity.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Here at AlaMed Injury Clinics, we have diagnosed over 2,000 patients with traumatic brain injuries. Our trained medical staff will carry out quick and effective traumatic brain injury diagnoses. It is one of the most common forms of head injuries that we see at our clinics. TBI stands for traumatic brain injury. Traumatic brain injuries are head injuries that cause interferences in the common function of your brain.
TBI can be caused by bumps, blows, or jolts to the head. TBI can also be caused by powerful head injuries as well. According to the Center for Disease Control, there were 288,000 TBI-related hospitalizations in the United States. Roughly half of these hospitalizations affected children. Traumatic brain injuries affect mostly children and older adults. TBIs are classified by severity.
They can range from a mild traumatic brain injury. This is known as an mTBI/concussion. They can also be classified as a severe traumatic brain injury. Lastly, TBI can occur in a specific location or in a widespread area. However, head injuries involve damages to your scalp and skull.
What is a Traumatic Brain Injury?
Traumatic brain injury occurs when sudden trauma to the head alters normal brain function, affecting the cognitive abilities of an individual, including thinking and learning skills. Objects like bullets that penetrate brain tissue can also result in TBI. TBI can also happen when an individual violently hits an object.
TBI symptoms are classified as mild, moderate, and severe. This depends on the extent of brain damage. A mild TBI can alter the consciousness or mental state of a person for a brief period. Severe TBI, on the other hand, can cause memory loss and unconsciousness for an extended period. Older adults and children are more susceptible to experience TBI.
Facts About Traumatic Brain Injuries
Concussions do not automatically result in unconsciousness. Only around 10% of concussions lead to unconsciousness. Most people who suffer concussions remain awake despite being less alert than usual.
- It is called a “Silent Epidemic,” since nearly 2.8 million Americans suffer from TBIs yearly. 75% of these incidents involve concussions or mild brain injuries. Nearly 90% are released from hospitals after treatment.
- 50,000 die annually from traumatic brain injuries. An estimated 153 people die daily from TBIs.
- One can suffer TBI without their head necessarily having hit an object. The brain can smash into the skull if there’s enough force to shake the brain.
- You can prevent a TBI by wearing a helmet or using a seatbelt.
- The frontal lobes are most often injured during a TBI. They control thinking and emotions.
- Men have a higher risk of sustaining TBI.
- It is a major cause of disability in the US and all over the world.
- Falls are the leading cause of TBI in the United States. They account for nearly half of all cases.
Annually, it is estimated that the cost of TBI in the USA is at $48.3 billion. Over $31 billion is channeled towards hospitalization expenses.
Common Causes of TBI
The causes of traumatic brain injuries are diverse. Falls and auto accidents are the leading causes of TBI. The force of the collision and the nature of the injury are some of the factors that determine the degree of brain damage. Prevention is the best approach when dealing with TBI. Here are some common events that can lead to traumatic brain injuries:
Vehicle-related collisions are a common TBI cause. Drivers, passengers, motorcycles, and pedestrians are all at risk of suffering TBI during auto accidents.
Slip & Fall
Falls are more common in older adults and young children. Falling downstairs, from ladders, beds, and in the shower can cause TBI.
Many people in the workplace suffer injuries every day. Workers, especially in the construction industry, risk being hit by objects while at work. They may also fall from ladders, roofs, and scaffolds.
Still, you may be at risk of suffering a TBI if you have been involved in gun accidents, domestic violence, sports injuries, and combat injuries. At AlaMed Injury Clinics, our doctors can determine whether you have a TBI. If you have been involved in any of the above incidents, contact us immediately to schedule an initial consultation.
Treatment for Traumatic Brain Injury
Reach out to AlaMed Injury Clinics immediately if you notice any signs of TBI including nausea, headache, sensitivity to noise, hearing loss, blurred vision, seizure, and balance problems. Remember, the consequences of TBI worsen without treatment. Our medical doctors can assess your situation quickly and prescribe a treatment plan that will help you make a full recovery.
The severity of traumatic brain injury is considered during treatment. Our doctors will ask questions to help determine the extent of your or your loved one’s TBI, including:
- What caused the injury?
- Did the victim lose consciousness and for how long?
- Did the injury affect the victim’s speech, coordination, and alertness?
- Did any object hit the head or any other body part?
- What object hit the victim’s head?
- Was the victim ejected from the vehicle?
Given our medical team’s experience, we will make an accurate prognosis of your condition once we have all relevant information about your case. Then, we will provide you with the best medical treatment program to help with pain management and recovery.
If you have a mild TBI, you may require no treatment since symptoms typically go away. OTC painkillers and rest can help you if you are dealing with a mild traumatic brain injury. Still, anyone experiencing mild TBI needs close monitoring to make sure symptoms don’t persist or worsen.
A follow-up with our physicians at AlaMed Injury Clinics is important to give you a clean bill of health. Our doctors can indicate if it is appropriate for you to return to work or school.
Hospitalization may be required for more severe TBI cases, with the possibility of admission into intensive care. This helps to prevent brain damage from worsening. Emergency care can stabilize the condition of a patient with moderate or severe TBI. Here, we focus on maintaining the patient’s blood pressure and providing enough blood supply and oxygen.
If you’ve sustained severe injuries, there may be other underlying complications that require immediate attention. At AlaMed Injury Clinics, our medical doctors will concentrate on reducing secondary brain damage owing to bleeding, inflammation, or reduced supply of oxygen.
Medications can help minimize secondary brain damage once you have suffered a TBI. They include:
You may experience seizures during the first week of a moderate or severe traumatic brain injury. These medications help to curb further brain damage brought about by seizures.
These medications minimize tissue fluids and boost urine output. They help to decrease the pressure within the brain.
A comatose brain doesn’t require much oxygen to function. At AlaMed Injury Clinics, our medical professionals will determine whether there is a need to place you in a temporary coma to help with recovery. This may come in handy when increased brain pressure limits the normal supply of oxygen and nutrients.
In some TBI cases, there may be a need for surgery. It may help to prevent additional damage to the brain. Here are some of the problems our doctors can address through surgery:
Brain bleeding can worsen the pressure within the brain. Emergency surgery can be performed to reduce pressure and minimize additional brain damage. It can remove clotted blood between the brain and the skull.
Our surgical team can remove pieces of the skull that made their way to the brain or repair a skull fracture.
Severe head trauma may cause bleeding in the brain. Surgery may be required to stop the bleeding.
Opening the Skull
Amassed cerebral spinal fluid can lead to increased pressure within the skull. Swollen tissue can also cause additional brain damage. Surgery may be critical to relieve pressure during such times.
You may require rehabilitation if you experience a severe traumatic brain injury. There may be a need to master how to talk, walk, and perform everyday activities after a severe TBI. This depends on the type of injury and its extent.
At AlaMed Injury Clinics, our medical therapists and nurse practitioners will help you every step of the way to attain full recovery. The aim of our rehabilitation program is to help you become better at performing day-to-day tasks.
Symptoms of a TBI
Patients who suffer a mild form of TBI can remain conscious or lose consciousness. It can last from either a few seconds to a few minutes. If you are unconscious with a traumatic brain injury on the left side of the brain, unconsciousness could last longer. If you have a traumatic brain injury on the right side of the brain, unconsciousness could last shorter.
Overall, it depends on the severity of the traumatic brain injury that you have suffered. When you have a mild form of a traumatic brain injury, you may experience headaches, vomiting, nausea, lack of motor coordination, and tired vision in your eyes, bad taste in the mouth, and dizziness. You may also experience fatigue, changes in sleep, and difficulty with balancing. In terms of psychological changes that can occur if you have a mild traumatic brain injury, you may experience mood changes.
An example of this is when you are feeling joyful for one day and on the following day you are experiencing sadness caused by a traumatic brain injury. Other psychological symptoms that you may experience with TBI are confusion, memory difficulties, difficulties with focusing, and trouble with forming cognitive thoughts.
If you have a moderate or grave traumatic brain injury, you may have recurring headaches. You may have nausea to the point of vomiting repeatedly. Other symptoms of a moderate or severe traumatic brain injury include inabilities to awake, dilation in the pupils, having numbness in the limbs, confusion, and convulsions.
It can also affect the way that you speak. This is due to the fact that it can cause you to speak with a slurred speech. Another symptom of TBI is agitation. Agitation symptoms can affect the way that you act in social situations. This can occur at school, home, or work. TBI can cause you to have an issue with identifying, understanding, processing, and describing emotions. This is known as alexithymia. It’s a personality trait disorder. Only 60.9% of people with a traumatic brain injury are also diagnosed with alexithymia.
Here at AlaMed Injury Clinics, our medical staff is trained to help with rehabilitating patients suffering from moderate or severe cases of traumatic brain and head injuries.
Skull fractures are another type of injury that we can treat at AlMed Injury Clinics. Skull fractures can be painful for a variety of reasons. One reason is that a break in the bone can cause the pain receptors in the body to become alert. When the pain receptors are alerted, they send signals to the nervous system. The nervous system sends signals to the part of the body that has a broken fracture.
When this occurs, you are alerted to the bone being fractured. Another reason that a fracture can be painful is that you can experience involuntary muscle spasms. These spasms occur in a bone fracture as they attempt to hold the broken bone fragments together. When you experience skull fractures, you may suffer from damage to nerves, muscle vessels, the spinal cord, and nerve roots. The nerve roots occur during spine fractures.
Types of Skull Fractures
Fractures come in different types. At the AlaMed Injury Clinics, our medical staff can categorize fractures on their features.
The first category that we use to categorize fractures is closed or open fractures. Closed or open fractures occur when the injury that you suffered does not open the skin; it is called a closed fracture. By contrast, an injury that does open the skin is called an open fracture.
The second types of fracture are complete fractures. Complete fractures occur when the bone breakage goes through the bone itself. As a result of this, the bone is separated into two.
The third type of fracture is displaced fractures. Displace fractures occur when a gap forms where there is a bone fracture in you. Our orthopedic surgeons at the AlaMed Injury Clinics have helped over 300 patients who have suffered from displaced fractures.
The final two types of skull fractures that can occur are partial and stress fractures. Partial fractures are bone fractures where the bone breakage fails to go all the way through the bone itself. Stress fractures occur when the bone gets a crack in it. Stress fractures can be difficult to find with MRI imaging.
Diagnosing Your Head Injury
Our doctors at AlaMed Injury Clinics start out with diagnosing your head injury through a physical examination. As you are being examined, our doctor will obtain a complete medical history of you. He or she will ask how the injury occurred. If you informed the doctor that you have suffered neurological problems caused by your head injury, we will do a follow-up at the earliest convenience.
Doctors at AlaMed Injury Clinics use cutting-edge medical technology to diagnose and treat head injuries. We use blood tests, X-rays, CAT scans, MRI, and lastly EEG. EEG is an electroencephalogram. It is a procedure that records the brain’s activity with electrodes attached to the patient’s head.
Contact AlaMed For Your Head Injury Treatment in Birmingham
When you have auto accidents, you can suffer head injuries due to the blunt force striking the head. Other common causes for head injuries include auto accidents, sports injuries, slip and fall accidents, and physical assaults. In order to treat head injuries, our doctors at AlaMed Injury Clinics can prescribe pain medication. We can also advise you to rest. If the injury is severe, we can have you sent to an outpatient hospital where surgery can be performed.
Our doctors are dedicated to assisting you with your recovery. For the best treatment for head injuries, contact AlaMed Injury Clinics or you can come into the clinic. Our front desk receptionist will be able to assist you with getting your head injury taken care of.