With Traumatic Brain Injuries, or TBI for short, as the number one cause of injury-related deaths and disability in Canada, it is vital to know that a huge portion of victims have reported fatigue as a symptom of their injury.
The Medical Side
Fatigue is a difficult symptom to diagnose since there are no accepted tests that can prove whether it is a side-effect of brain injury or not. What we do know is that it occurs because the neural connections in the patient’s brain are no longer able to send messages to the rest of the body which can impair physical, psychological and mental functions.
The Difference Between Primary and Secondary Fatigue
Primary fatigue refers to the fatigue directly resulting from the brain injury and it is correlated loss of function in certain regions of the brain. Whereas secondary fatigue refers to the aftermath of the brain injury, such as resulting stress, discomfort or trauma. In either case, the fatigue can have a physical, mental and emotional impact on the person.
Many victims of brain-injury still find themselves in a situation where they’re forced to go to work, no matter how physically tired they feel. In this case, hygiene, fitness and a healthy diet often take a backseat which results in even lower energy reserves and such the cycle continuous and the person’s quality of life further spirals.
A common side-effect of brain injury is mental fatigue. Even the smallest amount of mental activity can lead to a feeling of being drained and exhausted for these people. They find their attention span has shortened severely and pushing themselves to concentrate for a normally common period of time leads to headaches, over-stimulation and irritability which in turn leads to them needing to remove all outside stimulation for a prolonged time.For many, this severe change in cognitive ability forces them to give up their jobs and cut back time spent with their family and friends since previously enjoyable activities have become too much to handle.
Following the physical and mental fatigue comes a culmination of both: psychological fatigue. Anxiety, anger, self-doubt, frustration, guilt and a sudden lack of purpose are all huge factors in psychological fatigue. It leads to insomnia, constant stress, depression and frequent headaches.This is why it is vital to prove the victim’s chronic fatigue is real and a result of the car accident and not a pre-existing condition. A good personal injury lawyer in Sarnia will be able to help you with this.