Everyone knows that you can hurt your head and, therefore, your brain in a car crash. The steering wheel or the windows in the vehicle, as well as the dashboard, could cause blunt-force trauma if someone’s head strikes these parts of the vehicle during a crash.
However, you don’t have to hit your head on anything to suffer a brain injury in a motor vehicle collision. There are three other ways that a car crash could cause a noteworthy traumatic brain injury (TBI) even if you don’t physically hit your head on anything.
One of the ways people suffer traumatic brain injuries is when an object penetrates the skull. Glass or shrapnel from a car crash can cut through the head and cause damage to the brain.
Any bleeding or lacerations on the face or head could be a warning sign of a worse injury under the surface. Penetrating injuries often require surgery to remove the foreign object, adding the secondary risk of surgery to the existing traumatic wound.
Violent motions during the wreck
If someone’s car spins, rolls over or completely flips, they will experience physical trauma from the violent force involved. In addition to soft tissue damage, violent vehicle motions can also cause TBIs.
The force of spinning or the violent motion of flipping over can cause the brain to move rapidly inside of the skull, leading to bleeding or bruising that could get progressively worse if left untreated. As the pressure in the skull builds, the symptoms someone experiences will worsen. If the car crash shook you up physically, it could have caused damage to your brain.
Percussive force from an explosion
Although it is rare, sometimes collisions result in an explosion. You don’t need to be inside the vehicle for an explosion to be dangerous. Being nearby could mean that the percussive force of the explosion causes internal damage, such as a TBI.
Losing consciousness during a crash or experiencing very violent vehicle motions could be a good reason to ask a doctor to evaluate you for a brain injury. Identifying a possible traumatic brain injury early after a crash can help you get better medical care and make it easier to seek compensation.