We think of traumatic brain injury only becoming apparent after high-speed, high-impact collisions. The more we learn about brain injuries, however, the better we understand the harm done to the brain even in low-speed, low-impact events.
Low-speed crashes can cause different injuries, from concussion to mTBI (mild traumatic brain injury). So-called mild TBIs can occur at speeds as low as 15 to 20 mph.
A misleading word
The word mild can be deceiving, as even mTBI can lead to permanent brain damage, affecting your ability to sense, think, move, and even to be yourself, to retain your regular personality.
About 80 percent of TBIs are classified as mild (mTBI). Most cases show improvement within three months, but the remaining and unfortunate 20 percent experience ongoing symptoms such as memory issues, depression, and cognitive difficulty.
Some injuries are not obvious
The problem is, there is usually little about mTBI that is obvious. Insurance companies have a tendency to note the lack of obvious physical damage or loss of consciousness or the lack of damage to the vehicle and decide the accident could not have been serious, so your payout should be minimal.
Insurers are not doctors – yet they make medical judgments nonetheless – about your consciousness.
What doctors see
Actual specialists in neurology look for subtler evidence of damage: seizures, headache, amnesia, insomnia, confusion, forgetfulness, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, disorientation, forgetfulness, irritability, mood swings from depression to elation, and loss of libido.
Don’t underestimate the value of your brain injury claim. Talk to lawyers who know about the subtle dimensions of MBTI before you settle for too little.