Coping after work-related brain injuries in Georgia
The effects of traumatic brain injuries, which may result from work-related accidents, may impact a person’s ability to return to his or her job.
Traumatic brain injuries, including concussions, are common in Georgia, and throughout the U.S. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 1.7 million people across the U.S. sustain this type of injury each year. Traumatic brain injuries, or TBIs, are often associated with sports. However, people also commonly suffer head and brain injuries on the job. For workers, the symptoms and lasting effects of head trauma may make it difficult to return to work.
What are TBIs?
According to the Mayo Clinic, TBIs occur when a jolt, bump or blow to the head or body causes brain dysfunction. An object piercing the skull and entering the brain may also cause this type of injury. There is any number of factors, which may contribute to causing TBIs, including slips and falls, auto accidents, assaults and occupational struck by equipment accidents.
What are the effects of head trauma?
People may experience a range of symptoms and effects as a result of TBIs. Some of the most common effects of traumatic brain injuries include the following:
- Issues with cognitive processes, such as thinking, memory and reasoning
- Emotional or psychiatric issues, as well as behavioral or personality changes
- Physical problems, including headaches, vertigo, impaired motor skills and hearing loss
- Communication and language issues
- Development of other medical conditions, such as post-traumatic dementia, Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease
Some effects may subside over time, while others are lasting or develop later.
Returning to work after a TBI
As the effects of TBIs subside, it takes time for people to return to their daily activities, including their work. According to the Mayo Clinic, it is advisable that people take breaks as needed, stay focused on one task at a time, and alter their work tasks and expectations. Physicians typically recommend easing slowly back into activities and limiting overly strenuous tasks until the TBI symptoms have subsided.
Sometimes, the effects of TBIs are severe, long lasting or permanent. In these cases, workers are commonly unable to return to their former position, or to work at all. Those who sustain their injuries in the workplace may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. However, changes in employment status may still put a financial strain on injured workers, as well as their families.
Seeking legal guidance
Injured workers and their families may face numerous challenges as a result of the long-term effects of TBIs. In addition to immediate, and ongoing, medical treatment, people who have suffered these types of injuries may also need extensive therapy, such as occupational, physical or speech. Often, those who suffer these types of injuries need time off of work for recovery. As such, people may incur undue medical expenses and suffer lost wages as a result of TBIs.
For those who have suffered TBIs in Georgia, it may sometimes be difficult to prove that negligence or occupational hazards led to their injuries. Working with an attorney may help them to seek damages from the liable person or company, or to obtain workers’ compensation benefits.