It is not always obvious that a person has suffered a neurological injury. While a severe neurological injury can involve severe symptoms and signs, some people sustain mild injuries that only present as fever or a seemingly meaningless headache.
People who sustain minor traumatic neurological injuries may still suffer long-term signs affecting their career and family lives. At first, you may think that you will be fine after the injury, but then you may notice subtle personality changes and mood changes.
Read on to find out the five telltale signs of neurological injury.
Trouble Speaking Coherently
Slurred speech is a common sign of head injury. Slurred speech after a neurological injury is known as dysarthria. It occurs after the areas controlling muscles you use for speech become damaged, which leaves the speech muscles weak and paralyzed. Typically, you will know what to say but struggle to get the words out correctly.
Any damage to the motor cortex, cerebellum, basal ganglia, and brain stem can cause incoherent speech, and its severity will depend on how severe the neurological injury is. A person with neurological injury will have slow speech, quiet volume, mumble, breathiness, and lack of expressiveness. Working with a speech-language pathologist should help you regain your speech skills.
Personality changes after a neurological injury are some of the most challenging telltale signs to deal with for a patient. Neurological injury can make you suddenly angry and aggressive. It may also cause you to feel nothing at all. As a result, when a person changes their personality after a neurological injury, it may cause them to change how they relate with others.
A head injury will affect your mood and emotions, and you may seem more depressed and irritable than usual. This will cause other people to believe that you have changed your personality. The location of the neurological injury will especially change how you behave. For instance, the orbitofrontal cortex assists with controlling impulsive behavior and plays a significant role in your empathy. In case of damage to this area, you may struggle to empathize with other people and may engage a lot in reckless behavior.
The drastic changes can be jarring to the family members, and some may feel like the person they knew before does not exist anymore. Therefore, neurological injury patients need to stay open and work on coping with the new normal.
Some people who suffer from severe neurological injury end up having seizures or convulsions. Hospitalization after neurological injury may cause seizures, and it is essential to know what to do in case of an attack. Most seizures occur in the first few weeks after the injury, but others may occur months or years after an injury.
Medicine can reduce or stop seizures and help the patient return to most activities. In some rare cases, an attack may make it difficult for you to function due to the new difficulties when thinking and moving.
People with neurological injury commonly report experiencing problems with balance. Most of these people suffer from dizziness and disequilibrium during recovery. The severity of the balance problem will depend on how severe the neurological injury was and when the injury occurred. People with poor balance have a high risk of tripping and falling, leading to another neurological injury or broken bones. A patient needs to maintain balance when sitting or standing during their daily activities such as self-care and walking. The poor balance will prevent you from participating in various activities, including sports, driving, or working.
Balance problems may have diverse causes, and every one of them needs a different treatment. You can improve balance by enhancing your strength and flexibility. You can also practice standing or walking in various areas to help you deal with unsteady walking. Rehabilitation devices for people with neurological injuries can also help you recover.
A neurological injury arises from various causes and may affect every part of the body. Neurological injury may also be referred to as brain injury, and when it occurs, physical and psychotherapy are vital for recovery.
Neurological injuries occur when a person gets a blow to the head, which damages the nerves and causes some chemical alterations in the brain. For some time, the brain will not function properly. Some telltale signs include trouble speaking coherently, personality changes, convulsions, and unsteady walking.