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How long does a brain injury take to heal?

You suffer a brain injury in a car accident. You have your seat belt on, but another driver runs a red light and hits the side of your car on your way through the intersection. Your head hits the window and that's all you remember before waking up in the nearest medical center.

How long will it be until you recover? Other injuries have a rough time frame, such as the number of weeks it will take for a broken arm to mend itself. What about the brain?

If you are looking for that exact date, the unfortunate reality is that brain injuries do not all follow the same pattern. Some heal quickly. Others take months or years. Still others never heal. Those suffering from these injuries often note that they have a "lifetime of recovery" ahead of them.

In some cases, people take this as a positive. It means they can focus on small steps and consistent healing. They do not have to feel depressed that things are not happening faster. Any progress is good news.

Others see it strictly as a negative. Many other things in life, from school papers to projects at work, come with deadlines. People are used to having completion dates. Everyone wants to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

With a brain injury, that just may not be possible. It is hard to predict the amount of healing that will occur from one injury to the next or how long it will take.

If you are facing a daunting recovery process, it can also grow very expensive. Make sure you understand all of your rights to financial compensation.

Source: Brainline, "Traumatic Brain Injury: A Lifetime of Recovery," David A. Grant, accessed April 26, 2018

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