A brain injury can have a huge impact no matter your age. But in children this can mean a life-long disability which also affects the whole family.
It is thought a child’s skull is only 1/8th as strong as an adult’s, therefore children are much more vulnerable to brain injury through deformation and fracture of the skull.
As a child, your brain is still developing and you are continually developing skills and understanding. If a brain injury occurs in the early stages of development, a child may not then go on to learn new skills as they normally would.
Due to the ongoing change and development within a child’s brain, some problems may not become apparent until many years later, when further development would normally be expected.
The effects of brain injuries in children
The effects of brain injuries in children can be far reaching and have a huge impact on their quality of life. These can be anything from short term memory loss to long term physical problems and learning difficulties.
These effects can include:
- Tiredness and weakness in the limbs.
- Problems with speech, difficulties in communicating and understanding speech.
- Changes in behaviour such as becoming more irritable, behaving impulsively or inappropriately.
- Learning difficulties.
- Memory problems and difficulty processing information.
- Problems with anxiety and depression.
- Difficulties with empathy and thinking how others feel.
All of these effects can mean that children experience difficulties in day to day life such as getting ready, going to school or keeping up with day to day conversation for example.
How are the rest of the family affected?
As with any serious illness or injury, a brain injury can be hard to come to terms with and it can result in a complete change to the lives of the whole family.
Parents can sometimes experience feelings of hopelessness in such times and may also feel a sense of loss for their child as they were before the accident. They can also be put under a lot of stress and strain caring for their child’s complex needs.
Siblings can often feel confused, especially if they are very young. They may not understand what has happened to their brother or sister, or understand any changes in day to day life.
Both family members and friends can provide a fantastic support network but it is important that the whole family takes care of themselves and each other. There are many organisations and charities that can also provide support not only to the injured child, but to the whole family. Do not be frightened to ask for help.
At CFG Law, we understand how confusing and frightening it can be if your child has sustained a brain injury. Our compassionate and understanding solicitors are here to help you gain access to the help and support you and your family need at this difficult time.
In our experience, the most crucial factor in making the greatest amount of physical and emotional progress is access to early assessment and treatment. In order for your child to make the best recovery possible, it is important they receive the best treatment available as soon as possible.
We also work with a network of charities that can help you and your loved ones after a brain injury. These include The Children’s Trust who provide care, education, therapy and rehabilitation to children with an acquired brain injury, Headway who are a national charity for people with an acquired brain injury, BASIC - the brain and spinal injury centre and the Brain Injury Rehabilitation Trust (BIRT) who offer specialised assessment and rehabilitation services for people suffering a disability as a result of a brain injury.