When you survive a car accident, you can feel lucky to be alive. While you may have injuries and damage to your car, you may still find yourself thankful that it can be in your past.
In the days after the accident, you may start to feel different. You may not even be the one to notice rather, a friend or family member mentions that you are not acting yourself.
The signs of a traumatic brain injury are often difficult to spot immediately after an accident and, if left untreated, could become fatal. Here are some of the symptoms of a TBI that you might overlook.
Changes in behavior
When you act and react in certain ways, you will find a way for it to make sense, even if it is out of the ordinary behavior. You may chalk moodiness up to being stressed about getting your vehicle fixed or waiting for an injury from the accident to heal.
However, your friends and family have seen you through stressful situations and know when your responses are unusual. After an accident, pay attention to loved ones expressing that something seems off about your reactions to stress. This can indicate that you suffered head trauma during the accident and need medical attention.
Changes in sleep patterns
Similar to changes in behavior, it can be easy to dismiss changes in sleep as the result of stress or pain from other injuries. When your sleep patterns change, it can be an important symptom of having a traumatic brain injury. You should watch for changes, such as:
- Sleep cycle reversal
- Inability to sleep or stay asleep
- Sleeping for long periods
- Difficulty waking up
You may want to keep a sleep journal or use a sleep tracker to learn more about your sleeping patterns in the days and weeks after your accident. If you suspect that your sleep patterns have changed, you should talk to a medical professional to learn more about your symptoms.