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Brain injuries and young people

Most parents want to do everything they can to keep their children safe. Despite their efforts, all too often children still end up in the emergency room with head injuries. While injuries to the brain can negatively impact people of ages, when a young person whose brain is still growing suffers such an injury, his or her development could be delayed. In more serious cases it might even be halted. Because these injuries are commonly “invisible” they may not initially be obvious.

According to recent statistics, in Ontario, of the visits to ERs that involve young people, between 30 and 40 percent are due to head injuries. While readers may be surprised at how high that number is, a clinical psychologist reports that number would be even higher if every child who actually suffered a concussion sought medical attention immediately after being injured. Young men between the ages of 15 and 24 are at highest risk for suffering a head injury.

Parents should be aware of the symptoms of a concussion or brain injury and seek medical attention when they witness them. These symptoms include:

  • Dizziness and poor balance
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Headaches
  • Disorganized speech and behaviour

In the long-term, the outcome of a concussion could be devastating. Among other things, young people who have suffered a head injury could experience difficulty managing their emotions and have a hard time focusing. In addition, they could engage in impulsive behavior.

There are many ways in which children might suffer a head injury. While in some cases sports are to blame, other times, it is the negligent actions of others. When the latter is to blame, it may be possible to take legal action against the responsible party. A personal injury lawyer can help determine whether such action makes sense.

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