Police officers need to be aware of brain injuries

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Police officers face risks with each shift they work. What some police officers might not realize is that not all of the hazards they face on the job come from people who are out to harm them. Brain injuries are one of the risks that many officers may suffer and not even realize it.

Law enforcement officers who work near explosives are at an increased risk of suffering from blast-related traumatic brain injuries. These injuries are caused by the shockwaves that occur with the blast.

There are a number of symptoms that someone with a blast TBI (known as a bTBI) might experience. Some of these include:

— Headache

— Seeing stars

— Vomiting

— Confusion

— Trouble answering questions

— Irritability

— Memory troubles

— Problems sleeping

There are many instances in which the BTBIS victim might chalk these symptoms up to other causes, such as fatigue or dehydration. That can mean that the BTBIS goes untreated, which can lead to more issues down the road.

When it comes to BTBIS, it is possible that a person can suffer from them even when they are subjected to repetitive low-level exposures. It is generally accepted that safe blasts have a per square inch of 4 or lower. However, even repeated exposures to “safe” blasts can have negative effects.

It is possible that BTBIS, which can also affect people who aren’t police officers, can lead to other more serious medical conditions, such as chronic traumatic encephalopathy. In some cases, early onset dementia and other similar conditions might occur.

In all of these cases, missing work and having to deal with the ensuring financial impacts might become a reality. Seeking compensation for the brain injury might be a way to reduce those financial impacts.

Source: Police One, “5 things cops need to know about traumatic brain injury,” Bob Sullivan, Aug. 01, 2016


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