Personality Changes After A Traumatic Brain Injury

doctor talking to patient about brain scans

The brain is a complicated organ, and few scenarios bring this fact to light more than a traumatic brain injury (TBI). Following a TBI, some people experience a change in personality, and differences in the way they think or feel. For both the loved ones and the victims of these injuries, it’s important to understand how these changes come about, and how they can impact day-to-day life.

How Injury Affects The Brain

According to Psychology Today, injuries to specific parts of the brain, such as the hippocampus, amygdala, and frontal/temporal lobes can alter how the brain works in a way that creates pronounced emotional responses. Those who suffer brain injuries may become agitated, exhibit volatile emotions, imapired memories, decreased impulse control, and even violent physical aggression.

Brain injuries can also bring about various psychiatric issues, which include anxiety, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and substance abuse. This obviously affects the injured party dramatically, but these issues can also boil over into their relationships with others.

Friends and family may find it difficult to communicate normally with someone who has suffered a TBI, and might notice that person becoming more confrontational, reserved, or emotionally distressed. In severe situations, the possibility of aggression presents an additional element of danger that is harrowing for all parties involved.

Handling this change is difficult, but not impossible. Friends and family should do their best to remain supportive, attempt to offer limit confrontation, and try to provide an environment where recovery can take place with limited distraction. It is also key to recognize the emotional changes an individual suffering from a TBI is experiencing, as well as identifying the triggers that lead to outbursts and mood swings while simultaneously employing strategies to help process their difficult emotional responses.

Navigating Life Post-Injury

If you’ve suffered a traumatic brain injury, it can be a devastating blow to your normal life, with various complications beyond those aforementioned personality changes. 

It’s important to get expert help to help navigate this unfamiliar scenario — from competent doctors to a lawyer for moderate to severe brain injuries (in the case your injury was the fault of another party).

Specialists can help you start down the road to recovery, in addition to holding negligent parties accountable so that the impacts to your life are more manageable. It’s also critical to lean on your support group — friends and family — who can provide the moral strength and compassion you’ll need to get your life back on track following a life-altering brain injury.