Preventing Traumatic Brain Injury
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is an injury to your brain that changes the way your
works. A TBI can be mild, moderate, or severe. Most TBIs are mild. A TBI can change
you think, feel, act, and move.
can result from a blow or jolt to, or penetration of the head. Some causes are a fall,
car accident, a fight, or a sports injury. From 2006 to 2010, about 2 in 5 TBIs were
by falls. Blunt trauma caused 3 in 25 TBIs, and car accidents caused 7 in
50. Violence accounted for about 1 in 10 TBIs.
Preventing a second TBI
you had a TBI in the past, you should know that recovery may be slower if you have
another TBI. If you still have symptoms of a TBI, they can increase your risk for
second TBI. These symptoms include:
sure you are aware of these symptoms. Work closely with your healthcare team to manage
them. Don’t try to drive or take part in any dangerous activity if your symptoms put
at risk for an accident.
Preventing a first TBI
TBIs occur during car accidents. Falls, firearms, explosions, and assaults are other
major causes. Falls are a leading cause of TBIs for adults ages 45 and older and for
children. Car accidents and assaults are leading causes for teens and young
adults. Contact sports such as football also raise the risk for TBI.
Alcohol or drug abuse can lead to a first or even a second TBI. Risky behavior is
another danger that can lead to a TBI. Mental health issues like depression and
post-traumatic stress disorder can lead to poor decision-making and high-risk behavior.
This behavior includes drug and alcohol problems. All these factors can increase your
risk for a TBI.
Tips for preventing TBI
first tip is to recognize the dangers of a TBI and not take part in risky behavior.
are some other tips:
Take good care of yourself. Eat a healthy diet and exercise regularly. Get good quality
Make your home safe from falls. Remove throw rugs, use handrails on stairways,
install good lighting, and use nonslip mats in the shower.
Keep firearms unloaded and locked away.
Have your vision checked at least once a year. Poor vision can increase your risk
for falls and other types of accidents.
If you have diabetes and have numbness in your feet, don't walk in poorly lit
Spend time with your friends and family and be active in social activities.
People who become isolated and withdrawn from loved ones are more likely to take
part in risky behaviors.
Wear a seatbelt when you drive.
Wear a helmet when you ride a motorcycle or bicycle. Also wear one if you engage
in any high-risk activities such as skiing, contact sports, or snowmobiling.
you’ve been diagnosed with a TBI, work closely with your healthcare provider until
brain heals. Be aware that your symptoms could put you at risk for another TBI. If
you’ve never had a TBI, you can prevent one by not taking part in risky behaviors.