Getting a driver’s license is a rite of passage for American teenagers. Though, it is one which often comes with conflicting feelings from parents. For as much as you might want to support your teen’s ability to drive, you also probably worry about their safety on the road.
As a parent, you probably cannot fathom getting a call about your teen’s involvement in a motor vehicle accident. While a teen driving incident can be both scary and financially difficult, many times, teens appear just fine following a crash. However, a significant jolt or blow to the head could cause a traumatic brain injury (TBI). And although you may not see any physical signs of this trauma, suffering such an injury could drastically change your teen’s life.
Your teen could suffer from a traumatic brain injury
If your teen is involved in a crash, have a medical professional examine them as soon as possible, even if they lack apparent external injuries. While your teen may not exhibit signs of a TBI immediately following a crash, a medical record can help you hold a negligent driver accountable if symptoms develop in the days and weeks following the accident.
The severity and symptoms which stem from a TBI may vary. However, common effects include:
- Persistent headache
- Ringing in the ears
- Trouble concentrating
- Slurred speech
A severe TBI can lead to life-long disability, but in many cases, with proper rehabilitation efforts and modifications, a teen could fully recover.
Since a brain injury can present changes in your teen’s physical, psychological and social functioning, you may want to request specific accommodations when you send them back to school. The medical professionals involved in your teen’s treatment can help you determine the best approach for their return to leaning, despite any trauma they may have suffered.
And depending on the situation surrounding the accident, you might want to explore your options in holding a negligent driver accountable for hurting your child.