A brain injury is often described as a hidden disability – to a stranger, there may be no physical signs of a disability, but for the injured person, a brain injury may negatively impact many parts of their life.
Recovery and rehabilitation
If someone suffers a brain injury as the result of a traumatic event, such as an assault or a road traffic collision, it is likely they will need an extended period of rehabilitation – the symptoms of a brain injury may continue long after the more obvious physical injuries, such as broken bones, have healed.
Brain injuries are classified as mild, moderate, or severe and the rehabilitation needed will depend on the severity of the injury, the part of the brain that is injured and the effect it has had on a person.
Rehabilitation programmes are tailored to an individual’s needs and will usually involve a multi-disciplinary team who will work together to achieve the best recovery outcome possible. Rehabilitation therapies that may be received include:
- Physiotherapy to help restore movement and function;
- Occupational therapy to provide practical support to enable people to undertake activities that are important to them and to reach their full potential – this may include leisure activities or a return to work.
- Speech and language therapy to assist with speech, language, and communication as well as eating, drinking, and swallowing.
- Psychology to help with a person’s thinking, cognitive skills, behaviour, and emotions.
Symptoms of brain injury
The effects of a brain injury can be long lasting or permanent, even with rehabilitation. Common symptoms include:
- Personality changes
- Behaviour changes
- Inability to understand and communicate
- Memory problems, poor concentration and slowed responses
- Slow or slurred speech, or being overly talkative
- Physical disabilities and a loss of physical sensations
- Poor planning and problem-solving skills
Effects on relationships
Relationships with friends and family can be put under immense strain following a brain injury. Some of the most difficult problems faced is coming to terms with personality changes, irritability, tiredness, depression, mood changes and possible threats of violence or other inappropriate behaviour. The role of family members may change too, a wife, husband or partner may by choice or circumstances become the main carer which is a significant commitment – this could implicate their own job, family finances and their mental health.
Is there help available for a brain injury?
If the brain injury was sustained as the result of an incident for which the injured person was not responsible, it may be possible to bring a claim for compensation. Brain injuries can leave people requiring long term rehabilitation, unable to return to former employment, or any kind of paid employment, adaptations may be required to the home, specialist aids and equipment purchased or carers to assist the family to care for the injured person. These all come at a cost and bringing a claim for compensation will ensure rehabilitation and future care needs are met and future or past losses caused by the incident are compensated for.
But personal injury claims can take time to complete, and finances may be affected in the immediate aftermath of the injury, so it is also important to conduct a welfare benefits check up to ensure you are receiving all the benefits to which you are entitled.
Major Trauma Group is a network of specialist lawyers and law firms who are experienced in dealing with major trauma claims including brain injuries. We can arrange a free welfare benefits check-up for you, and bring a claim for compensation on your behalf, with a focus on obtaining for you the right rehabilitation at the right time.
Contact Major Trauma Group via: