Traumatic Brain Injuries in Children
Unfortunately, children suffer thousands of accidents every year that result in traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). These injuries are caused by myriad sources and can result in devastating consequences for families. Sometimes, these injuries are the result of a simple accident and no one is truly at fault. However, in many other instances, someone is at fault and can be held accountable at law for the injuries to the child.
Common Causes of Traumatic Brain Injuries
We all know that children are naturally inquisitive and incautious. Part of growing up is learning to be cautious and to make good decisions in potentially dangerous situations. As a result of the lack of experience and caution inherent in children, children suffer a disproportionate amount of traumatic injuries to their brains compared to adults. According to the CDC’s latest statistics, common sources for TBIs in children include:
- Falls, which account for about 55% of all TBIs in children aged 0-14;
- Blunt trauma, which accounts for about 24% of all TBIs in children less than 15 years old;
- Assaults, which account for only 3% for children under 15 but were the leading cause for children 4 and under; and
- Recreational injuries, which resulted in diagnosis of almost 250,000 cases of concussion or TBI in 2009 alone.
Impacts of TBIs
TBIs can have far reaching impacts of the life of the victim. Some TBIs cause mild temporary symptoms. Some, however, are much more severe and permanent in nature. Common deficits caused by TBIs include:
- Physical problems such as seizures, severe headaches, dizziness, paralysis and impairments in balance, movement and coordination;
- Sensory deficits, including altered sensations and diminished spatial awareness;
- Behavioral deficits including anxiety, difficulty expressing or controlling emotions, depression and misplaced aggression;
- Cognitive problems such as diminished reasoning capacity, diminished problem solving ability, memory deficits, reduced executive function (such as self-monitoring, self-editing, goal setting abilities and self-awareness); and
- Communication deficits, including difficulties in speaking, understanding speech and written communication.
These impacts are only a partial list of the terrible things TBIs can cause. Many of them, especially those that are deemed more serious, require years – if not a lifetime – of treatment to see any benefit. Medical and therapy bills can run into the millions of dollars. The stress and damage that can be visited upon the family of a young victim can be catastrophic, resulting in domestic problems in what was an otherwise harmonious family situation.
What Can You Do If Your Child Has Been Diagnosed With A TBI?
First, you need to ensure that your child receives all appropriate care. Then, once the situation is stable, you may need to consult an experienced personal injury attorney. Of course, each situation depends on the circumstances of the accident. If you feel that someone, either through negligence or through an intentional act, is to blame for the TBI, you need to act quickly. Florida law gives you some time to bring suit but you need support and the ability to gather evidence from the very beginning to increase your chances of success in receiving the compensation due to your family. In northern Florida, the firm of Fasig & Brooks has years of experience in dealing with TBIs. The science and medical evidence behind this type of injury is complex and requires specific expertise to fully analyze the case. Give us a call today at either (850) 222-3232 to set up your free consultation. The skilled professionals at our office have the experience and dedication to help guide you through a difficult situation and hold those to blame accountable.