How Do Brain Injury and Personality Change Go Hand in Hand?


Firsthand reports from the families of concussion and other brain injury patient families have long noted that personality changes are common in the aftermath of an injury. For a long time, these were observational and subjective accounts from family members but now more effort is being made to quantify the kinds of changes.

Many families and patients are unaware until after injury that concussion and TBI cause a wide range of symptoms that are cognitive, physical, and sensory. The changes may be transient or permanent and can develop at various stages of recovery from injury.

Emotional changes and their impact on mood and personality are some of the most difficult to cope with both for the family and the patient.

What are the Most Common Symptoms Post Brain Injury?

Brian injuries from mild concussion to serious TBI can cause:

  • Headache
  • Vision problems
  • Sleep disorders
  • Sensitivity to light and sound
  • Cognitive issues like memory problems
  • Brian Fog
  • Decision-Making problems
  • Lack of attention and concentration
  • Self-awareness
  • Self-control of emotions and behaviour

Many symptoms work to make others worse. For example, long-term sleep disruption can exasperate mood and concentration issues making it extremely important to diagnose and treat symptoms as soon as possible.

Mood changes are often a result of the emotional reactions to the challenges of recovery from the injury. Pent-up frustration with slow progress or the inability to function as one did pre-injury can manifest in bouts of seemingly unexplained anger or apathy. The personality changes often become more obvious in the home setting where the patient attempts to resume normal activity and cannot.

What are Symptoms of Personality Changes?

Brain injury rehabilitation specialists note that it is important to remember brain injuries are extremely complex and rehabilitation varies widely from one person to the next. Common personality change symptoms include:

  • Quick to anger
  • Obsessive or obstinate behaviour
  • Aggressive behaviour
  • A general inability to regulate emotions p- crying or laughing at inappropriate times
  • A seeming apathy or ‘flat’ behaviour

What Treatments Work?

Generally, the mood changes are manageable with treatment. Many therapies focus on reducing the stressors or triggers that prompt the emotional behaviours – reducing external stimuli, reducing demands on the patient and making lifestyle changes can all be helpful.

What Should You Do If You or a Loved One Sustain a Brain Injury?

If you or a loved one suffer a brain injury due to a car accident, slip and fall or workplace injury caused by someone else’s negligence you should consult with one of our experienced personal injury lawyers today. The road to recovery can be long and expensive. Don’t face your situation alone. Contact our experienced personal injury lawyers today at 1.866.414.4878

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