3 types of head injuries PTs frequently see from motorcycle accidents

A motorcycle accident can be a life-changing event. Motorcycle riders are four times as likely as other motorists to get injured in a collision. This can be due to motorcycle riders being much more exposed and less protected than motorists in other vehicles. Not wearing a helmet can be one of the biggest risk factors for motorcycle riders. Helmets can help protect against head injuries, which can be common and also have a high fatality rate. Taking care to wear a helmet when riding a motorcycle is important. The likelihood of a fatality is reduced when wearing a Department of Transportation-compliant helmet. If you do find yourself in a motorcycle accident with a head injury, physical therapy can help. Your recovery can be a complex journey, but with early intervention and a personalized rehabilitation program, you may be able to make significant progress over time

Types of head injuries from motorcycle accidents

Even with the protection of a helmet, head injuries can still happen in a motorcycle accident, and they can range in severity from mild to severe. This can be because the force of impact can vary. Common head trauma injuries from motorcycle accidents seen for rehabilitation and recovery in physical therapy can include:

Once you are stabilized and on the road to recovery, you may be referred to physical therapy. Physical therapy can be beneficial for head injury recovery, especially a TBI, after a motorcycle accident. 

Symptoms of head injuries after a motorcycle accidents

The symptoms of a head injury after a motorcycle accident can be subtle or pronounced. They can also present immediately, or they may be delayed in showing up. Some red flag symptoms to watch for are:

  • Loss of consciousness, even for a moment.
  • Headache, dizziness or confusion. 
  • Seizures.
  • Nausea or vomiting.
  • Vision or hearing problems.
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering or speaking.
  • Balance problems or difficulty walking.
  • Drainage of clear fluid from the nose or ears.
  • Personality changes or mood swings. 

If you notice any of the symptoms, it’s crucial that you seek immediate medical attention. Head injuries after a motorcycle accident can be a major concern

What can cause brain swelling after a motorcycle accident?

Brain swelling and bleeding within the brain or the skull cavity can be serious complications from a head injury:

  • Bleeding can also cause intracranial hemorrhages that can cause blood clots to form. These clots can deprive the brain tissue of oxygen. This can lead to a stroke or worse. Intracranial hemorrhages often occur in moderate to severe head injuries after a motorcycle accident. 
  • Brain swelling can be caused by bleeding, inflammation or fluid buildup. It can lead to a number of severe complications that need immediate medical attention to help reduce the impact it can have. 

Physical therapy for motorcycle head injury recovery

Physical therapy (PT) can play a crucial role in helping you recover from a head injury after a motorcycle accident. Physical therapy can help with:

  • Pain management — Techniques like manual therapy, electrical stimulation or therapeutic exercise can help manage pain and stiffness associated with the injury.
  • Balance and coordination — Head injuries can affect your balance and coordination. PT can help improve these functions, allowing you to get back to navigating your daily activities safely and confidently.
  • Gait training — Difficulty walking can be a common consequence of a head injury. PT gives you a safe and controlled environment to help you regain your normal walking pattern.
  • Scar tissue management — PT can include a variety of techniques to help improve the quality of your scar tissue and reduce its restrictive effect on movement. Manual therapy can help soften and stretch scar tissue. This can help improve flexibility and range of motion. 

The road to recovery after a motorcycle head injury can be daunting. Lattimore PT is here to help you navigate it more easily

Here at Lattimore Physical Therapy, we understand the unique challenges you may be facing in the aftermath of your motorcycle accident. Our licensed physical therapists can help guide you through every step of your rehabilitation process. We will work closely with you to create a personalized treatment plan that will help address your specific needs. With our expertise and dedication, we can help you achieve a maximized recovery and return to living life to the fullest.

Contact our team today for more information or to schedule an initial appointment.

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