Each year, approximately 17 million people suffer from traumatic brain injuries (TBI). Around 80 percent of sufferers will be treated and eventually released, but they often continue to experience long-term symptoms. Brain injuries that involve emotion, thinking abilities, language, and sensation are well-recognized. However, researchers now believe that they may have uncovered yet another residual symptom—one that could actually exasperate the other, more known symptoms.
TBI and Excessive Daytime Sleepiness
In a study that followed 31 TBI sufferers over the course of 18 months, researchers from the University Hospital Zurich in Switzerland revealed a higher propensity for excessive daytime sleepiness. Yet, interestingly enough, the TBI sufferers did not seem to take note of their sleepiness. This suggests that, not only are TBI sufferers having trouble sleeping, they may be unable to accurately access their sleep problems, putting them at an increased risk for a number of issues.
A Silent Epidemic
Daytime sleepiness has become a bit of an epidemic in the United States. In fact, around 20 percent of all serious motor vehicle accidents are thought to be caused by daytime sleepiness. Of course, not all of those are caused by TBI-related sleepiness. Others may suffer from a sleep disorder or may simply be too thinly spread between home and work and their social lives. However, the risk of being in yet another accident for TBI sufferers is still present. As such, these victims should be compensated accordingly.
Driving Restrictions Should Be Taken into Account
Auto insurance companies are infamous for trying to pay as little out as they can to auto accident victims. However, in the case of those who suffer from TBI, the potential for driving and work restrictions should be factored into the settlement. To ensure this happens, auto accident victims diagnosed with TBI should seek assistance from a skilled and experienced attorney that is willing to stand up to the insurance companies and fight for fair compensation.
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