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How life changes after a brain injury

Robert F. Spohrer

If you suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI), it’s safe to assume that life is going to change. Brain injury recovery rates are different in every case, and brain injuries are fairly unique from one patient to the next. So, even if you recover physically, that doesn’t mean everything is going to go back to the way that it was before you suffered that injury.

These changes can be difficult for people to deal with because they have to learn how to adjust during daily life. This isn’t a short-term healing process. It could be something that never fully heals or that changes their life for years to come. Here are a few ways that this can happen.

Your mood and personality can change

Even if you have all of your physical and cognitive abilities, your personality itself could change. Mood swings are common, for example, and people often feel irritable or aggressive. This may be quite different than what you were like before the injury, and that can be hard for family members and close friends. It’s also difficult for you to deal with because you understand that you’re acting in a different way, but it feels natural and inherent, so it’s hard to simply change the way you feel or act.

You may have long-term limitations

Many of the issues that you face after a brain injury could turn into long-term issues. For instance, maybe your speech abilities are limited or you struggle to think of the right word. You could simply be limited in your communicative abilities going forward. At a certain point, you stop thinking about recovery and start thinking about how you can adjust to account for these limitations.

You may not be able to work

Depending on the type of injury and the symptoms you are experiencing, you may not be able to return to your career. If you have physical mobility issues, for instance, that may mean that a physically demanding career is essentially over. If you were an artist who relied on their creativity or a CEO who relied on their personal skills, changes to your cognitive or emotional state could also harm your career prospects.

What options do you have?

It’s important to realize that the ramifications of a brain injury can last for a long time after you get medical treatment. Make sure you are well aware of the legal options you have at this time with a personal injury lawyer.