A traumatic brain injury is defined as an injury that is caused by some trauma to the head. Generally, the trauma is sudden and involves some type of impact to the head or body, and the damage caused by the injury can range from minor to life-threatening. The Mayo Clinic provides a list of common events that lead to traumatic brain injuries.

Falls are one of the most common events that lead to head trauma. People can fall while in the bath or shower, children can fall out of bed and workers can fall on a job site. There are obviously hundreds of other scenarios where someone can fall and experience a traumatic head injury. The extent of the injury depends on the force of the fall, how the head hits the ground or other surface and whether a person is wearing safety gear.

Another common cause of brain injury is motor vehicle accidents. Because of the force involved in some accidents, people can hit their heads within a vehicle or even be thrown from the vehicle. Motor vehicle accidents can result in very serious brain injuries.

Violence and sports injuries are also common causes for brain injuries. According to the Mayo Clinic, about a fifth of traumatic brain injuries are related to violent activity, including fighting, domestic abuse or even gunshots. Sports injuries are a big cause of minor to major brain injuries, especially in young athletes. Even playing sports outside of a competitive environment — such as playing ball in the backyard — can lead to such injuries.

Brain injuries are frightening experiences for the person injured as well as friends and family members. Following safety rules and taking common sense precautions can help reduce the chance of a brain injury. Because accidents do happen, though, you should always be aware of your rights. You have a right to seek compensation for losses when they are related to a brain injury that occurred because someone else was negligent or willfully dangerous.

Source: Mayo Clinic, “Traumatic brain injury,” accessed Dec. 05, 2015