If you have an injury directly to your head, or if your body sustains a huge jolt, such as falling from a ladder or scaffold, you must get immediate attention at the hospital. This is not the time to be brave and say you are just “fine.”
If you are afraid to stop working because you think you might get fired, then think again. You are potentially setting yourself up for further injuries, such as a brain bleed, blot clot, a bruise on your brain, and more. These things can show up later after a day, a week, or a month. If something small fell on your head (you are wearing your safety helmet, yes?), you may not feel any initial head injury and pain.
You may be right about not having any trouble with your head. But what about your neck? Depending on what position your head was in when something fell on it, you could have compressed several spinal discs in your neck. Or they are out of alignment and that should be treated just as quickly as your head injury. We address below what types of head injuries you could sustain while on the job.
A concussion occurs when the brain is jostled in your head and bounces against the skull. If you fell down the stairs or off a scaffold, even while wearing a safety hard hat, the body’s impact against the ground is enough to jostle your brain. This can happen even when your head does not impact the ground.
Usually labeled as traumatic brain injuries (TBI), concussions are serious business. We often hear about these incidents because football players are susceptible to concussions. Problems occur when numerous concussions over time create brain problems later in life.
A bruise can occur on the brain and maybe the outcome of a concussion. The brain bounces against the inside of your skull, leaving one or more bruises on the brain. There will be swelling and possible bleeding even though you cannot feel pain, initially.
Bleeding in the brain can form a clot which is a very dangerous situation if the clot breaks loose. Depending on the magnitude of the injury, you may have several in one spot. If you have ever had a needle inserted into your arm to draw blood, or have received medical drugs, you might have experienced leaking blood under the skin, or swelling around the needle entry site. That is called a hematoma.
As your brain is encased within the skull, there is little room available if swelling occurs. You may not realize something is happening until it is too late and pain sets in.
Skull fractures are dangerous, especially if slivers of bone get into the brain. A sliver can be so small that it is undetected, except by having an x-ray, a computerized tomography (CT) scan, or a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) done on your head from all angles. Your doctor knows which one is better to use after considering the circumstances of your accident and injury.
No matter what accident you have on the job, you must immediately file a workers’ compensation claim to ensure you have medical benefits and living expenses available to you during the recovery period.
Arizona Injury Law Group offers experienced and Certified workers’ compensation lawyers and legal services for injured workers. Call for your free consultation! 480-300-7273.
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