We’ve all heard the generalization that the left side of the brain is logical while the right side is creative. What you might not realize is how much the different functions of each side of the brain can impact the short and long term effects of a traumatic brain injury (TBI). Taking any kind of blow to the head can result in a range of language, behavioral, and even physical changes to your daily life. Exactly what kind of changes to expect is influenced by whether the injury occurred on the right side or left side of the brain.
Differences Between Left and Right Side Brain Injuries
Both hemispheres of the brain are directly involved in how you think, feel, and move. Injuries on either side can lead to physical difficulties like general weakness in the limbs or face, complete paralysis, or loss of physical senses, but the two sides otherwise work differently when it comes to cognitive impairment.
In general, these processes are typically impacted by an injury to the brain’s right side:
- Attention span and focusing on tasks for prolonged periods
- Eyesight, as well as comprehension of visual images
- Gathering thoughts together into an organized whole to express ideas
- Judging depth and distance
- Processing emotions in a mature and productive way
- Remembering facial features
- Understanding and interpreting non-verbal communication like facial expressions and various social cues
On the other end of the spectrum, these processes are most often negatively affected by an injury to the brain’s left side:
- Analyzing information to reach a logical conclusion
- Comprehending written communication
- Grasping linear or sequential concepts like time, numbers, and speed
- Purposeful muscle control for precise movements
- Regulating negative emotions like anxiety and depression
- Speech and language
While it is possible to draw some broad conclusions on what kind of changes to expect in your life depending on the side of the brain that was injured, it’s important to understand that the two sides work in tandem for your communication and reasoning skills. That means it isn’t always possible to say an injury on one specific side will always result in one specific medical condition. Striking either side of the brain in an accident could impair the victim’s ability to form words into understandable sentences, for instance, as well as inhibit the ability to recall information and understand concepts.
Injuries aren’t always restricted to just one hemisphere of the brain either—whether they occur through a slip and fall, a car crash, a work accident, or an act of intentional violence. In the case of coup-contrecoup injuries, the victim sustains an injury on both sides of the brain in the same incident. This type of injury occurs when the brain strikes one side of the skull violently and then is whipped in the opposite direction and hits the other side—typically due to a sudden change in motion.
What to Do After a Right or Left Side Traumatic Brain Injury
Regardless of which side of the brain is injured, there are several key steps to take to protect your legal rights after an accident with a head wound. Gathering the contact info of witnesses and documenting the scene is incredibly helpful, although that may not be viable in cases of severe injuries.
Always start a paper trail on the accident by seeing a doctor as soon as possible after the accident. From there, closely follow your doctor’s medical advice, and then contact a traumatic brain injury attorney. An experienced personal injury attorney is crucial in assisting with the financial side of your recovery while you focus on the physical aspect. The attorney’s role is to help prove your injury occurred through negligence. This could have been via a drunk driver, an employer who didn’t follow safety standards, or a property owner who didn’t fix a tripping hazard.
When negligence causes an accident, you can recover damages for either left or right side brain injuries. Through an insurance settlement or court case against the negligent party, a skilled TBI attorney may be able to help seek compensation for your:
- Loss of wages while recovering
- Loss of future earning potential
- Intangible injuries like pain and suffering, PTSD, and loss of quality of life
- Hospital stays after the initial injury
- Ongoing treatments and therapies
- Out-of-pocket costs while seeking treatment
Whether you or a loved suffered a TBI in an accident, we want to hear more. Provide us with the basic details through our contact portal so we can determine if The Mottley Law Firm is the right fit for your case.