Did you know that every 9 seconds, someone in the United States sustains a brain injury? Or that at least 5.3 million Americans, including many children, live with a traumatic brain injury-related disability? The statistics are staggering, especially considering the impact not only on the injured person, but on the injured person’s loved ones, health care providers, insurance companies, government agencies, employers, attorneys, and more. Yet, many people do not realize the scope of the problem.
That is one of the reasons why advocates have helped designate March as Brain Injury Awareness Month. The annual campaign provides a platform for educating the general public about the incidence of brain injury and the needs of people with brain injuries and their families. This year, the theme is “Change Your Mind,” and the event has three main objectives:
- De-stigmatizing brain injury through outreach within the brain injury community
- Empowering those who have survived brain injury and their caregivers
- Promoting the many types of support that are available to people living with brain injury
Brain injuries can be classified as mild, concussions being the most common, moderate, or severe. No two brain injuries are the same, however, and treatment is different for each patient depending on the type and severity of the injury. Let us share a bit more insight into different types of brain injuries here on our blog.
Injury 1. An acquired brain injury (ABI). This is any injury to the brain that is not hereditary, congenital, degenerative or induced by birth trauma. More than 3.5 million children and adults sustain an ABI every year, although the total incidence is unknown. Typical causes include electric shock, infectious disease, lightning strike, oxygen deprivation, stroke, substance abuse and tumor.
Injury 2. A traumatic brain injury (TBI). This is a type of ABI that is caused by trauma to the brain from an external force, such as a fall, motor vehicle accident, falling object, assault or gunshot wound. The number of people who sustain TBIs and do not seek treatment is unknown, but it is estimated that one in every 60 people in the U.S. lives with a TBI-related disability. The annual impact of TBI is enormous:
- 2.5 million people sustain a TBI
- 2.2 million are treated for TBI in Emergency Departments
- 280,000 are hospitalized
- 50,000 die
Brain injuries also can result in devastating physical, mental, and emotional impairments that can prevent a person and their family from participating in regular daily activities. Fortunately, rehabilitation, education, and support can help those suffering from brain injuries put their lives back together.
We know this topic may raise more questions than it answers. If you, or someone you know, has suffered a brain injury that may be caused by the negligence of another, we encourage you to contact us. Our entire local, experienced team is here for you 24/7. Contact us to schedule a free case evaluation at any time.