Understanding the Recovery Process for Traumatic Brain Injuries

May 13, 2022

Recovering from a traumatic brain injury is a long-term process. Even with a relatively mild TBI such as a concussion, the recovery process can still take as long as three months. For more severe forms of TBI, recovery can be a years-long—if not lifelong—process.

Diagnosis and Short-Term Treatment for Traumatic Brain Injuries 

An early diagnosis can be critical when dealing with a TBI. In many cases, prompt treatment can significantly reduce the long-term risks of these injuries. As a result, anyone who has concerns about a possible TBI should see a doctor right away.

Life-Sustaining Support

With severe forms of TBI, life-sustaining support may be necessary for days, weeks or months. If a TBI victim is in a coma, non-responsive or in a minimally conscious state, he or she will need continuous care until he or she is able to continue to subsequent stages of recovery.


With nearly all forms of TBI, rest is a key component of the recovery process. This includes both physical rest and mental rest. Concussion and other TBI patients should avoid activities that stress the brain for as long as their doctors recommend. In addition, they should promptly cease any activities that cause symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, confusion, or fatigue.

Gradual Return to Normal Activity

As the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) explain, “As symptoms improve, [TBI patients] may gradually return to regular activities.” However, this is also a process that patients should undertake with their doctors’ advice and supervision. Not only can rushing the recovery process for a TBI end up pushing out the recovery timeline even farther, but it can also increase the risk of complications as well as the risk of second impact syndrome in the event of another head injury.

Rehabilitation and Therapy for TBI Victims

TBI patients who go through long-term recoveries will often need rehabilitation and therapy. Depending on the severity of a brain injury’s effects, necessary forms of rehabilitation and therapy may include:

  • Home-based rehabilitation
  • Inpatient or outpatient rehabilitation at a hospital
  • Residence in an independent living center
  • Occupational therapy
  • Physical therapy
  • Speech and language therapy
  • Medications
  • Psychological or psychiatric care

Loved Ones Will Need to Continue to Monitor for Signs of Brain Trauma

It is important to continue monitoring for signs of brain trauma during and after the recovery process. If symptoms do not go away, or if they recur or get worse over time, this is most likely a sign that additional treatment is necessary. As we said above, recovery is a long-term process, and it is a process that patients and their loved ones must allow to run its course.

Regardless of the severity of an accident victim’s TBI, medical treatment can be incredibly expensive, and being unable to work or go to school can have significant financial consequences as well. In addition, many accident victims continue to struggle with the effects of their serious injuries long after they have physically recovered. Fortunately, accident victims and their families can file claims for just compensation in many cases, and, if you have a claim, an Allentown brain injury attorney at Drake, Hileman & Davis, PC will fight for the compensation you deserve.