In some cases, a slip-and-fall accident may cause an individual a minor injury, such as a sprained wrist or a bruise. However, falls may also cause serious injuries to an individual’s brain, and these traumatic brain injuries may have consequences for months or years after the accident.

The symptoms of mild TBI (also known as concussions) may be fairly minimal and often diminish a short time after the original injury. However, severe TBI may have many physical, cognitive and emotional symptoms that could last for a long time. Some people even experience negative consequences from severe TBI for the rest of their lives.

Falls are common causes of TBI

Data from the CDC indicates that falls are frequent causes of injuries, especially among older Americans. According to the CDC, about 20% of falls cause a serious head injury or broken bones, and falls are the most common cause of TBI. If an individual who falls is taking certain medications or is part of an older age group, the consequences of a head injury may be more severe. Additionally, falling also increases the chance of falling again.

Symptoms and complications of severe TBI

The Mayo Clinic provides information on the causes, symptoms and complications of moderate or severe TBI. Some of the physical symptoms of severe TBI include seizures, ongoing nausea, loss of coordination and sleep problems. There are also potential mental symptoms of TBI, such as extreme confusion, unusual behavior and mood swings.

The consequences of severe TBI from falling may last for years or even be permanent. In some cases, severe TBI may cause vertigo, brain infections, hearing loss and facial paralysis. Some studies indicate that severe TBI may increase an individual’s risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. The Mayo Clinic states that individuals should always seek medical care after a head injury.