Common questions about traumatic brain injuries and depression

On behalf of Randall D. Moore at The Law Offices of Randall D. Moore, PLLC

After sustaining a brain injury, those living with a TBI often experience the signs and symptoms of depression.

After sustaining trauma to their head, traumatic brain injury victims may experience a wide range of different effects. For example, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, those who incur traumatic brain injuries may struggle with impairments that affect their coordination, emotions, memory and sensations. While TBI victims in Texas may experience many different effects, those who incur a brain injury also have a high risk of developing depression.

Why is depression likely among TBI victims?

According to the Department of Health and Human Services, for every 10 people who do not have a TBI, one person will have depression. In comparison, for every 10 people who have incurred a brain injury, approximately three will struggle with this mental illness. Although depression is common amongst TBI victims, researchers are still unable to determine whether factors like age, the part of the brain that was injured, gender or the type of injury make this mental illness more likely.

How soon after the trauma do depression symptoms present themselves?

Not only are researchers unable to conclude what makes depression more likely among brain injury sufferers, but they are also unable to determine when this mental illness will develop after the initial trauma, states the DHHS. While one TBI victim may start to experience the symptoms of depression immediately after the accident, another may not develop this mental illness until an entire year has passed.

What are the symptoms of this mental illness?

The DHHS states that brain injury victims may be able to determine if they have become depressed if they:

  • Experience feelings of sadness or despair throughout the majority of their day
  • Sleep more or less than usual
  • Lose interest in hobbies or activities that they used to enjoy
  • Experience changes in their eating habits

Additionally, those living with the effects of depression may increase their dependence on controlled substances and experience suicidal thoughts.

How is depression treated?

Depression is generally treated with psychotherapy, antidepressants or a combination of these methods. According to the DHHS, researchers are unsure of how these treatment methods can specifically benefit TBI victims. However, psychotherapy and antidepressants have proven to be helpful for people living with this mental illness.

After sustaining a brain injury, those living with a TBI in Texas may deal with the effects of the injury for days, weeks or even months once the initial trauma occurs. If you incurred a brain injury in an accident due to another person’s negligence, consult with an attorney in your area to find out what compensation may be available to you.

Keywords: TBI, brain, injury