Head Injuries

A head injury is any sort of injury to your brain, skull, or scalp. This can range from a mild bump or bruise to a traumatic brain injury. Common head injuries include concussions, skull fractures, and scalp wounds. The consequences and treatments vary greatly, depending on what caused your head injury and how severe it is.

Head injuries may be either closed or open. A closed head injury is any injury that doesn’t break your skull. An open (penetrating) head injury is one in which something breaks your scalp and skull and enters your brain.

It can be hard to assess how serious a head injury is just by looking. Some minor head injuries bleed a lot, while some major injuries don’t bleed at all. It’s important to treat all head injuries seriously and get them assessed by a doctor.

What causes a head injury?

In general, head injuries can be divided into two categories based on what causes them. They can either be head injuries due to blows to the head or head injuries due to shaking.

Head injuries caused by shaking are most common in infants and small children, but they can occur any time you experience violent shaking.

Head injuries caused by a blow to the head are usually associated with:

  • motor vehicle accidents
  • falls
  • physical assaults
  • sports-related accidents

In most cases, your skull will protect your brain from serious harm. However, injuries severe enough to cause head injury can also be associated with injuries to the spine.

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