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How common is amnesia after a car accident?

On Behalf of | Jan 18, 2021 | Car Accidents

While there are no reliable statistics about memory loss after car accidents, concussions and other traumatic brain injuries are shockingly common. Put simply, if you hit your head during a crash, you may sustain a TBI. If your brain smashes into your skull during rapid vehicle deceleration, you may also be vulnerable to one. 

Unfortunately, the symptoms of both a TBI and memory loss may not show up immediately after a collision. Consequently, to determine if your brain has suffered potentially life-altering harm, you should always seek emergency medical treatment following a crash. 

3 types of accident-related memory loss

One type of accident-related memory loss is due to stress instead of brain injury. If you have post-traumatic amnesia, the stress of a motor vehicle accident may cause you to lose memories of the accident and the moments before and after it. 

Two types of TBI-related memory loss are more likely, though. Anterograde amnesia may interfere with your brain’s ability to form memories for some time after the crash. With retrograde amnesia, the TBI may make it impossible to recall the memories you formed before the accident. 

Your recovery journey

While going to the emergency room is the first step after any accident, an ER physician may lack the expertise to treat your memory loss. Therefore, to start your recovery journey on the right foot, you may need to see a neurologist, neurosurgeon or memory therapist for specialized care. 

Even though memory loss following a car accident can be terrifying and frustrating, you should not lose faith in your body’s ability to recover. Ultimately, if you receive the right medical treatment and focus on your recovery, you have a decent chance of remembering again.