The link between brain injuries and dementia

On Behalf of | Feb 25, 2022 | Brain Injury |

Every day in the state of Washington, people suffer unexpected injuries. There is no predicting when you might be involved in a car accident, slip on a wet surface or trip on uneven concrete. In the best scenario, you walk away with scrapes and bruises. However, anytime your head is involved in an accident, there is the risk of a traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Common TBI accidents

Brain injuries can occur anytime strong physical forces act on your head. If you slip and fall backward, you could hit your head on a hard floor or concrete sidewalk. Forward falls can also result in a direct blow to your skull.

A car collision can cause brain damage even if you do not hit your head. The forces of a crash may cause your brain to hit the inside of your skull, leading to inflammation and bruising.

Signs of a TBI

Your skull provides a hard layer of protection for simple injuries. Hitting your head against an open cabinet door is more embarrassing than damaging. However, you should always pay attention when you take a blow to the head. Signs of a TBI include:

  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Headaches
  • Confusion
  • Dilated pupils

If you or a loved one experiences these symptoms after a head injury, it is critical to seek medical attention immediately.

Dementia and TBIs

Brain injuries not only cause immediate damage to your nervous system, but they can also have lifelong effects. Recently, doctors have determined that any TBI brings an increased risk of dementia later in life. When they learn more about the mechanism that creates this relationship, they hope to develop preventative therapies that will reduce the risk.

You should never ignore a head injury. Although you may feel fine at first, symptoms can develop a few hours to a day later. Seeking medical attention as soon as possible can prevent some of the long-term damage of a TBI.