Depression and Anxiety Common Even Years After TBI

Research Update: Depression and Anxiety Common Even Years After TBI

A brief summary of current research.

Psychiatric disorders following traumatic brain injury: Their nature and frequency

Whelan-Goodinson, R, Ponsford, J, Johnston, L and Grant, F (2009). Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation, Vol. 24(5), pp 324-332.

This research found that more than 60 percent of people with a brain injury had psychiatric disorders up to 5.5 years post-injury. Many of these were new cases of depression and anxiety and were not present prior to injury. The authors suggest that individuals with TBI should be screened for psychiatric disorders several times post-injury regardless of pre-injury psychiatric status, so that appropriate help can be offered.

Find out more.

Posted on BrainLine January 25, 2010.

Comments (59)

Please remember, we are not able to give medical or legal advice. If you have medical concerns, please consult your doctor. All posted comments are the views and opinions of the poster only.

Three years ago I was a passenger in a car that was hit broadside (on the rear driver’s side) by a car that ran a flashing red light. My husband lost control of the car on impact and we ran into a telephone pole, which smashed the front of the car. I lost consciousness between impacts 1 and 2. I don't remember Hitting the pole, the airbag deploying, the car stopping or anything else until I heard my husband yelling at me to get out of the car in case it caught fire. I was spaced out but ok and functional. Neither of us was injured (thank you, Subaru!) ostensibly. When the rescue squad arrived we denied transport to a hospital. That night I began having hearing loss on one side. Next morning I went to the hospital and had a ct scan that was normal except for age related changes. They told me the hearing loss would resolve in time, and it kind of did. But my anxiety while driving was awful. I got a larger car with lots of safety features but still feel panicky behind the wheel. Visual stimuli like orange barrels or fencing make it worse. I was managing all right until a month ago when I backed into the rear bumper of a parked unoccupied car in a crowded lot. Legs turned to jelly, and I keep having huge anxiety about how I could have killed someone. I am totally freaked by freeway driving and trying hard not to be avoidant. Everything came flooding back from BOTH accidents. It feels like the ground beneath my feet is moving, I keep thinking i’m Going to die, and I feel unstable walking. My vision gets worse with anxiety. How did you all get better? Thinking I may need medication. Who did you start with?

Curt..I completely understand how you feel..I am 5 years out on a traumatic brain injury..the balance will get better..the motivation gets better but you have to kick start it..the hardest part is getting started suggestion is find some work you feel comfortable with doing that you are good at..change professions but get back to work, that in itself will jump start recovery...the physchological is longer and harder..I still wake every morning in a full blown panic attack, I dont have any encouragement there other than just ride it out..put it behind you and go on with your day..I'll send Prayers your way and if you need a friend to talk to I'll send u my email..Blessings my friend..Recovery is in sight..keep pressing

My brain injury was not traumatic, it was very planned. I had a brain tumor surgically removed from the 3rd ventricle, right in the center of my brain. The injury is not any less though. Since my surgery, I have had extreme difficulty with anxiety and depression. I can't sleep anymore without pharmaceutical help, but I am tired all the time.

I had concussion after a fall of my horse, my helmet hit the ground on my right temple. I was in and out of knowing were I was for about an hour, I didn't attend hospital which I know I should have. Within weeks I started Panic Attacks and 6years later I am not getting any better.

Fainted and fell on the back of my head on hard floor and was knocked out nearly 2 years ago. The day after I went to work and worked regular shift work of 2 weeks days then 2 weeks nights and didn’t rest for about 2 months. Then bam I was hit with a severe panic attack. The next several months were so intense depression no sleep and panic attacks. I have learned to cope better by using the DARE audio book by Barry McDonough but some days are still really hard to deal with. Today was one of those days. I’m still here and have good days and it seems to be I get an equal amount of bad days. So it’s like 50/50 but you all know when your on the bad 50 it feels like it will never end. There are panic and depression support groups on Facebook that have helped me tremendously as well. My life is no where near what it used to be like but I am able to continue to live it despite the uncomfortable mental issues.

At the age of about 8, a rusted steel a frame of an old swing set gave way and the heavy pipe fell and cracked me on top of the head. At 23 I had a high speed motorcycle accident and hit my head on the road...I was in and out of conciousness for hours. The same year I put my head thr6 the windshield of a car. I started having anxiety and panic attacks not long after . As I aged they became worse. I'm now 56 and no medicine seems to completely alleviate all the panic, anxiety or depression. Can this be related to my head injures so long ago ?

I completely understand what you are going through.

In November 2018 (less than a year ago), I was hit broadside (t-boned) by a drunk driver. I was going 70 mph, and she was going faster. I lost control of my (7000 lb) truck and had 2 additional impacts after she hit me (both sides of the concrete freeway barriers). The freeway was crowded, and she barely missed a VW sedan with a family of 4, and hit me instead. This gives me a bit of relief, because it could have been much much worse. It was only her and I involved in the crash. I do not think I lost consciousness, but I do not remember some of the events of the crash itself, so I really don't know. If I did lose consciousness, it was only for a brief moment.

I managed to peal myself out of the truck with the airbags and severely damaged door. I declined going to the hospital, which I regret. I went home super sore, and woke up the next morning feeling beat up. At the time of the crash, I was a 38 year old, in shape guy, so I knew my body, and it felt like I had been shaken up real bad and had the most intense "workout" of my life. After a few days, I knew something was really wrong. My back was hurting, knees, hip, shoulder, and headaches.

Fast forward a month, MRI'S showed a bulging and herniated disc, and a shoulder injury. I had also started experiencing some strange psychological problems a few weeks after. I noticed I would get absolutely enraged at the drop of a hat, panic attacks, and severe anxiety. I have always been known as the "peacemaker" amongst friends, so this really shocked me. The severe depression hadn't hit at this point. By late January I had been diagnosed with a mild traumatic brain injury with post concussion syndrome.

By January, the full effects of depression had set in, but because I live alone and had isolated myself, it was just me and my mind. I continued physical therapy, and the neurologist prescribed the first antidepressant, and referred me to a psychiatrist. At this point, I was barely sleeping, and felt I was loosing my mind.

Roughly six months after the crash I had disc replacement surgery (by the same doctors that worked on Tiger Woods). The surgery has worked, and reduced my back pain significantly to a somewhat manageable level, but the psychological issues seemed to have increased. I find myself at home with uncontrollable anxiety, severe depression, borderline suicidal at times, and not wanting to leave the house. I want to be better, and I find hope in the fact that my back is better, but "happiness" feels like a distant mirage. Yes, my back was hurt, but I should be able to "manage" through this.

Now, 9 months in, I have lost my job at a global financial firm (after two separate medical leaves), and feel completely hopeless (at times). I'm still in physical therapy for the back, and I need shoulder surgery, but I shouldn't feel the way I do. I have accepted that life sucks sometimes, but this is different. For the first time in my life, I can't "think" my way out of this. I wake up every day telling myself that I will be happy, but it has little effect. I have short-term memory problems, and problems with executive functioning, per the speech therapist (I agree with this conclusion), balance problems, and some severe anxiety/depression issues. My family thinks it's "all in my head," but they can't wait to get the old Curt back. This, in of itself, depresses me. I want to get better. I know I've changed...I can look at the massive "to do" list I have for myself and see this. Before, I was a "go getter," and now I feel virtually worthless.

Volunteer at a hospital or church,Salvation army that the best medicine and it works. HELP OTHERS BBECAUSE IT WILL HELP YOU

I’m 51 years old I was ran over by a car when I was 12 years old I had a tbi broken back broken neck paralysed down the right hand side. I’ve only realised in the last 12 years that I suffered from depression anxiety and panic attacks. I take tablets for depression and anxiety but they only keep a lid on things I still feel depressed and have panic attacks that last for days, I feel down most of the time and don’t see my mates anymore preferring to stay home and be alone which I don’t want to do really. I miss my friends but can’t make myself go and see them. I’ve had a guts full of what my life has become. I still work and loved being at work,but I’m always asking the boss if I’m doing ok, because I continually question my worth. I put myself down to myself, I’m really struggling at present and I know how hard it is, but it’s worn me out.

It is so validating and helpful to read the posts.
I had a concussion and then 2 subdural hematomas.
I’ve gone back to work a few times and I keep ending up off because of anxiety and panic attacks and bad headaches .
Doctors are trying different medications and keep wanting me to go back to work and I feel like it’s so frustrating and scary to be at this point my life where I just don’t feel capable and in so much pain .
Hard to advocate for myself .

I had a car wreck in which i was hit in the drivers door and being knocked out for 20 mins. Can that cause my anxiety and depression 6 years later? Mine seems to be getting worse, 4 straight days of not being functional.

Hi - When I read what you wrote, I felt I could have written it myself- just 6 months later. I have not been able to work for the past month and not sure if I will be able to return, mostly due to a multitude of cognitive issues. I’ve been teaching for over 20 years, so this realization has been heartbreaking for me. I wondered what ended up happening with your situation. Sending hopeful thoughts & prayers. TBI (1999). I've adjusted. I know my limits and I pay attention to them. I have issues and the people that are close to me know them and understand (and love me for them). Remember: you will not be great at functioning if you are sick, tired or stressed.

This month is the 25 anniversary of my TBI. I understand your pain,
After all these years of Panic and
Anxiety, I can't handle it any longer either. I'm only 45 yrs old and I need to figure out how to retire early. My Brain can't handle Stress or conflict anymore. And
Workplace Drama is unbearable.

have to attend work soon ....just looking for help

a lifetime of tbi.....i cant handle it any longer.....cant find the right kind of help....tired of going through the doctorial dosnt help.

Are you still on here? We are all here because of what we have in common. Didn't look like as many in 2019.

As I stated above, I was you at one time. Worked at a bank for 23 years and was a boss. I did get meningitis but was told no laying side affects. NOT TRUE! I did suffer the loss of my mother in law who was like my mother whom I lost at 11. I had a dyafunctional childhood but I can empathise very well. Sometimes too well lol but as I said earlier, once you accept things and move on slowly. Key word is SLOWLY. Make a positive list and put on your mirror. I am still useful! List what your good at. Don't say nothing! That's the negative self talk. Write F.E.A.R. The letters stand for F-alse E-evidence A-ppearing R-eal. That's the truth. Take small steps. Go to your mailbox and back. Next, force yourself to go into a store. Maybe just get a pk of gum but it's uncomfortable because you don't want to because your afraid. Afraid of what? It's in our heads. That's exactly where it is. To us it's real. If you don't, it will be harder and harder. I was at the point I drive down my road and shook so bad I had to come back to call off work and climb in bed. Clothes, shoes, coat on and all. I was at my worst. I do take a medication that after 7 trials, finally worked. I've been in your shoes. I actually found myself having a panic attack at work. I went into my bosses office and had to sit against the wall holding my knees to my chest. Talk about embarrassing. I was a professional but we are NOT born professionals, were born as a human being. No matter what face we put on, we feel and our minds are so fragile. I'm glad to be in a generation where finally the minds health is just as if not more important than the physical. Again, it isn't easy but try. You know hard work. You worked hard to become a teacher. You don't lose that. It's who you are! You try to not accept giving up and becoming a hermit. You have things aka gifts to give to a child. There are reading to a child programs. You are still needed and wanted. You just have to go see who's calling you and LISTEN!
Praying for you!

My husband also sustained a TBI after a car pulled out into the highway in front of him without stopping in the median in October of 2017. Depression and anxiety seem to be worsening as days pass with no relief of dizziness, vertigo, imbalance, migraines, insomnia, low energy etc. He has also tried antidepressants but cannot get passed the side effects before having to stop. He is very sensitive to medications. Things seem to get better or go away, only to return. He is so tired of fighting this. He is under the best care at OSU with a well known neurologist who sits on the neurology board. His psychologist also sits on the psychology board. Reading your post caught my attention big time as our situations sound similar. This very day is the second day on an antidepressant. Day one was amazing, but day two is not going so well. He seems more depressed today than ever. I will bring this up to his neurologist that an anti-psychotic drug may be needed. Thank you for sharing!!!!
May I connect with you on Facebook or through a private message? Amy

After my head injury my anxiety and depression are extreme and my hearing is worse

I was knocked over by a speeding motorist five Months ago and suffered two bleeds on the brain,lost sense of smell and taste and haven't had a good nights sleep since,I went back to work after eight weeks but due to short term memory problems and emotional outbursts have now off work with stress .
I have never felt so helpless.

I know this was written a long time ago, but I wanted to reply anyway for others out there. You are describing what happened to my husband. I know TBI is different for everyone due to the type and severity of the injury as well as individual response.
However, what you described above is exactly what happened to my husband, who was a well respected PhD in academia. He ran several departments and had a business that took in @ $1M a year. Constantly busy with so many hats and articles written about him by various magazines. The sky was the limit. He had meningitis, and depression from it as well as memory issues he worked through and was deemed "all better". Five years after he was "well" depression worsened, cognitive issues became so bad he couldn't remember family members. Went on antidepressant after antidepressant. None worked but he tried to hide how bad it really was. Started closet drinking to get away from what was anguish. No one knew (he never drank his first 48 years of life, so no one even suspected). Finally, he couldn't hide the anguish and torment. Psychiatrists honestly didn't seem to know what to do. That was when the suicide attempts started. For about a year he was constantly thinking and eventually acting upon suicidal ideation (just to get it to stop). It was constant and I honestly wasn't sure that I wasn't torturing him by stopping him. I just had faith and knew he did and believed that suicide couldn't be an option. Went to a different state and the pyschiatrist there was shocked that no one had realized that he needed anti-psychotic med to make the antidepressant work. Within three days he was better than he had been in 3 years! The massive relief he felt was obvious. Fast forward 4 years and he is going to a wonderful TBI rehab facility called Brooks in Florida, seeing neurologists at Mayo Clinic and on medication to regrow brain cells. That said, the depression has never totally gone away so that he feels happy. He is working on that now and they are trying different combos to see what will work for him but it is not anything like before. His experience is that the symptoms seem to change over time.
For instance, he went through terrible paranoia, when on a med that they said had the potential to take it away in 36% of the patients and he was lucky. Hasn't come back. My point is, he felt so abnormal and alone and ashamed that he lost years of his life. If this is your experience, know that a normal person when they experience a TBI normally has trouble with a host of things and that it can get worse years after the injury. DON'T GIVE UP!!!! You need to find a really good neurologist, a psychiatrist that specialized in brain injury, and the right medication. There are so many out there it can feel hopeless but it only takes one good doctor prescribing one medication that helps to change your life.

Thank you for your comment. I'm struggling with the same symptoms (they come and go every week or two). I know God has a plan for my life and I'm trusting Him but some of the nights feel like they'll never end. Your comment made my night a little easier.

In June I fell down my wooden stairs and was unconscious. I had bleeding in my temporal and occipital lobes. I am a teacher. It's been about 3 months since my fall and I am improving with my vision and my balance. I'm still struggling with anxiety and processing issues. But since I went back to work I've started getting panic attacks. I'm almost scared to go to work. I'm afraid that I'm going to end up never wanting to leave my house. I've always been a strong independent person and it scares me that I'm not that anymore. I recognize who I was and what I used to do and I want that back. I don't know what to do. I see a therapist and a doctor and they just keep telling me that I might have a new "normal" but I want to go back to me. I'm terrified.

I've never read other's accounts of brain injury until now.

I suffered head trauma years ago. Within a few weeks, I stopped socializing became depressed followed by severe anxiety and suicidal....
I didn't even feel like a person anymore.

I then made the mistake of trying to rebuild to the person I was before the accident but that was impossible. I'm doing well now after taking meds to get my life together and then getting off the meds.

I honestly can't believe I never killed myself. It's a miracle. The sad part is all the relationships and life-long friends I had to abandon in order to become functional again. It was as if everything prior to the accident had to be eliminated in order to become healthy again.

My only advice is to get on meds for a year or more to rebuild and taper off once you've found stability. Good luck!

I was in MVA end of June. No bleed, but sever concussion, totaled vehicle (not my fault). I was driving 50mph in the right lane hauling my horses, someone pulled out in front of us and i couldnt stop, it sent us into a ravine and turned my trailer over. Everyine survived, but i have not been the same since. Improving, but my job (which i was out for for 6 weeks) is very demanding and stressful (RN manager in emergency dept). I amnon limited duty right now but it is such a struggle to not have anxiety, anger, and headaches making me nauseous by noon everyday. Still not sleeping well even with meds. Cant exercise due to neck injuries. My team was very supportive, but not my leaders. I feel like they think its all in my head bc i walked away. But im not the same, i have short term memory issues now, anger, insecurity, and comprehension/processing issues. I know my performance is suffering. Not sure what to do. It feels like no one believes me that im not the same cognitively.

Did your symptoms start immediately or did they get worse over time? I am asking because my boyfriend is suffering from what he thinks is depression but based off of what he tells me I feel it has to be something more. He was in a car accident and had a head injury. Thank you in advance for your response

Just want everyone to know that you are not alone with this struggle. There appears to be a good amount of us on here. I know exactly how scary the feeling are when they come because I get all of them (anxiety, panic, depression, fear, feel like im going crazy, paranoia sometimes). Just remember that there will be better days. My symptoms usually come 1 - 2 weeks at a time, then about the same time where I'm better (but not normal). I have been to TBI support groups but have yet to find anyone around who understands these symptoms of TBI. I feel like we need to talk to each other. I'm willing to so reply to me if you would like to also. My story is as follows.

9 months ago I fell head first on the back of my head on a hardwood floor. I was knocked out for approx. 30 sec to 1 minute (according to witnesses) Went to ER and they stapled my head then said I did not have a concussion. I had memory loss up to next day. Since ER said I was ok I went back to work 8 hours later (law enforcement) and went back to my normal way of living (little sleep, a lot of physical activity, a lot of stress, etc.) About 2 months later had my first intense anxiety and panic attack. Then 2 weeks of severe depression. I had no idea what was going on with me and I was so scared. I wanted to end my life but did not because of my faith in God and because I love my wife and children so much. So I have come to terms that I will probably never be the same again. With all that said, I know God will use this tragic life changing experience for good. He has always used the bad in my life for good. Just remember, God is always listening, so when your struggling just pray and try to go for a walk. Another good coping mechanism is small crafts such as pony beads and the similar. God bless all of you and I really hope to hear from somebody so we can have regular support conversations.

I can relate to all of the post I see on this page. October 2017 I fainted and fell head first on the back of my head on a hardwood floor. I was unconscious for about a minute and lost memory up to the next day. When I went to the ER to get staples in my head they told me I did not have a concussion and that I was ok. I went back to work the next morning (law enforcement) and continued my rigorous way of life (work, exercise, spending time with family, little sleep, etc.) In December of 2017 (about 2 months later) I had my first noticeable and debilitating anxiety/panic attack while working. Then weeks of major depression (crying like a baby for no reason and wanting to die). I spent thousands of dollars and several months with medical professionals saying it was probably some subconscious problem causing this. All the time my wife knew it was from my head injury. I finally saw a neurologist and he said it was probably from the head injury.

So it's 10 months after the head injury and I am on generic Wellbutrin and I am definitely doing better than the beginning but no where near normal. I feel compelled to write on this page and let everyone who reads this know that I am a real human and I am experiencing the same things that you are (anxiety, panic attacks, depression, feel like im going crazy sometimes, paranoia).

The MOST IMPORTANT thing about all this is that God has used this injury and complete alteration of my life to get me on the right path and mold me into what He wants. He wants me to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ and salvation from our sins. So to all the people experiencing these serious symptoms. Call upon the name of Jesus, read John 3:16, Romans 3:23, Romans 6:26, and Romans 10: 9 - 10 in the bible. Go to a bible believing church. The enemy wants you to end your life without knowing the saving grace of Jesus, but God can give you purpose in life again. I promise you this. I hope this helps everybody. I'm willing to share email for personal conversations because we need to be able to talk to others experiencing these same serious problems.

Hello there to all of you that struggle to get back to normal. I was hit by a car in 2002. Besides broken bones I had a fractured skull with 3 brain bleeds. The worst was in the frontal lobe. It changed my life forever but is manageable with meds. I lost all sense of taste and smell due to the nerves being torn in the frontal lobe. I take Lamictal. It’s the best without the side effects of many others and I’ve tried a bunch. That keeps my mood even and not so up and down. I also take klonopin when needed for anxiety and in social situations. I never had any mental issues until a Ford Explorer decided to run me over on an open road while I was getting some exercise on a bicycle in 2002 but with the meds “life goes on” just a little differently. If your not working with a professional, do so and get on some medication. There’s no shame in taking meds. I fought it , on and off for years thinking I could kick these feelings but honestly you need help from a little pill sometimes. My doctor suggests trying marijuana to replace the klonopin since New Jersey just legalized it and klonopin is addictive. I’m in favor of it not because I enjoyed it in the 60’s but because it has helpful benefits. So here I am a retired 67 year old guy with a brain injury that’s living a dream and I don’t mean living in a dream like state Get some professional help and a little meds and life is good. Stay healthy!!!!

Aug 2013, was bending down to put a 100lb box onto a push dolly, box slipped out of my hands and the crosshairs of the dolly hit me on top of my head. I literally saw stars but didn’t fall down or pass out. I thought I would be fine after a few weeks, because the doctor said I would. Flash forward to June 2018. Still not fine. Better, but not fine. Headaches, at least weekly, sometimes more. Social anxiety disorder. One doc says it’s in remission. It’s not. Meds help me get through the day, and I can socialize for a bit, but that can lead to 3 days of hermit behaviour and long 3hr naps. Brain injuries are serious. Whether you black out or not. My brain was dribbled like a basketball. I feel things will never be the same.

Rest, time, lots of time! I’m 60 years PTBIS and still struggle. Stay well hydrated and never give up. Good luck and God bless!

I don't know how long ago you wrote this post but I wanted to let you know it DOES get better. I sustained a bilateral frontal lobe injury in 2011 and had crazy suicidal ideation for months afterwards. It is soooo normal for concussion and tbi sufferers. It has been a long journey for me, and I did end up taking meds which kept me alive (I thought about slashing my wrists hundreds of times each day)... Keep fighting....your symptoms will decrease and you WILL feel better!!!

I am just reading this and I really hope that you have found some help?
I too went through gen years of debilitating depression and massive anxiety and panic attacks....and the worst was the "anticipatory panic" ...which is a 24 fear of mmmaybe having a panic attack. Was brutal!
And I resisted medication for ten years....finally I tried three different melds...first two did not work and it was a hard road. Last one was a life saver. "Prozac" ...or the generic "Fluoxitine". ...took 5 weeks to take affect. (Sometimes it only takes 3 weeks for some people.). So that was a really hard road too! Waiting! ...but when it works there is no "hmmm, I feel a little bit better" ...its like a VEIL has been lifted! ....I felt "normal" and clear and it saved my life.
So I suggest you do due diligence in trying Prozac....first on a baby dose of 20 mg. First week is 10 mg....then going to 20 .
Anyway, you may already have found help and I hope you have! But if you haven't,....then do the right thing....take care of yourself.....go to a free clinic if you have no health insurance and tell them your symptoms and ask to try Prozac on a small dose at first. It will be worth the wait! And there are no terrible side effects. If any side effects are there they dissipate after 6 months and they are not painful ones or anything you can't deal with. And Prozac is so safe they allow pregnant women to continue taking it during pregnancy.
I wish you health and happiness xo

I have had three bouts of anxiety and depression.
What has helped me every time is generic Paxil
Trazodone for sleep, and generic Xanax for nerves/ anxiety.

I was in a car accident in 1969. My head went through the windshield. There was
brain damage. The Dr.s told my parents I would probably never be the same again.

Seven years agp I had a 4 cm abcess on my left frontal lobe...had no idea it was there until it ruptured, it honestly felt as if I had been shot in the head! The incredible burst of pain in my head was unbelievable!!  My husband was at work and all I remember doing was going to bed (at 11 in th morning).  I didn't wake up until the following morning and it was then that my husband noticed that my left eye was drooped.  He immediately took me to the nearest Emergency Room where they did a CT Scan WITHOUT contrast, diagnosed me witn 3rd nerve palsy of the left eye. The doc (I use that term lightly) gave me 20 Vicodin and sent me home.  In less than 24 hours I had taken all 20...I was eating them like candy and they weren't even touching my headache. Its at this time, day 3, that I start to lose my memory of the events of the next four days.  I know that on day 3 my husband took me to the local walk in clinic who referred me to an opthamologist (????). We are  now at day 7...I go to the Opth. and he very lackadaisically states that I should PROBABLY see a neurologist.  Following this appt I went to pick up surgical records from neck surgery I had 3 months prior.  Thank God I orthopedist took one look at me, fast tracked me into the ER as a stroke patient.  It turns out that when the abcess ruptured it spilled bacteria into my CSF leading to a very bad case of bacterial meningitis.  I should, by all accounts, be dead but I am not.  But my life as I know it before is...I used to be a social butterfly!  When my husband and I first got married he would get upset because he said that when I walked into a room I "took up all the space"!  I loved people!  So much that I was attending University to become an Anthropologist.  After my brain injury I became a literal hermit!  I didn't want to be around anyone except my husband.  I acted inappaproiately toward my adult children and that caused a rift between my eldest son and myself that lasted a year.  I finally found a doctor that understood and was put on an anti-depressant and a medication for anxiety.  It worked wonders!  I felt like myself, well not totally, but kind of.  Then I moved...the next doctor I went to said that I shouldn't be on med's for anxiety long term and wanted me off them. I tried to explain that this anxiety was not situatiional but biological/chemical.  He insisted that I come off so I did.  It was horrible!! I became a hermit again, just laying in the chair staring at the stupid tv all day.  Last year after Christmas I ended up in a Mental Health Facility because my depression and anxiety were so bad that my husband became very concermed. The psychiatrist there understood that my type of brain injury could indeed manifest in the symptoms I was descirbing. He put me back on anti depressants and anti anxiety meds.  Felt great. Moved again...same deal!  I have an appointment tomorrow with a new doc and I am really hoping he understands that this is REAL.  I kinda hate doctors...


Replying to kickboxer: So sad for what happened to you. It will take a lot of time for you to get past this. Normal to go through anger & blame, it's all part of the privilege of brain injury. But you will get through it, be patient as you can & listen to your body

9 months post mTBI, knocked unconscious in kickboxing by overhand punch to left temporal lobe, second concussion in same spot within a week (first no loss of consciousness in sparring), third in less than 6 weeks. Angry at myself for being uneducated about the risks of repeat concussions and even more angry at my coach for letting me fight in spite of the risk. Laying blame won't help however. For the past 9 months, dream like state of derealisation, chronic debilitating anxiety, burning extremities, chest pain, palpitations, nausea, chronic fatigue, major depression, chronic insomnia (I literally cannot fall asleep unless it's at bedtime and then have early awakenings with inability to return to sleep = extreme torture). No meds or therapy have helped thus far. Suicidal thoughts non stop, I've even researched the shit out of carotid artery compression and exit hoods as supposed peaceful methods but cannot bring myself to do it. I have the will to live and have a loving supporting fiance but I don't feel human anymore, cannot work, cannot socialise and symptoms so crippling that I feel there's no hope for me and I'm trapped in a never ending nightmare. Most days I feel like in going insane. I just want the torment and suffering to end...

Over 30 years ago I had a Motorcycle accident.  Resulting in severe head injury and a badly broken leg!  I nearly bled to death but was saved by NHS!  With trauma to my brain, the original prognosis was that if I survived the first 24 hours, I was going to a 'vegetable!'  I had originally, for the first 20 years tried unsuccessfully to find work, but over and over again, I was denied the opportunity.  This has led to on several occasions, suicide attempts!  30 years after this life changing event I only found out yesterday, a name to which I can finally state happened to me!  Only by entering the name of my condition into Google, did I find this sight!  

Now I can feel that it wasn't only myself that's recovering from this...

25 years after mva severe depression and anxiety. No medication of help. Where now?

23 yers old, severe TBI in a MVC resulting in a 3 day coma about 2 years ago. Major insomnia issues, never experienced aggression or had seizures. My fine motor and gross motor are now acceptable but still improving. I've worked my speech back to normal, I'm back at the gym, and will be finishing my degree this year. The worst part of it are 'episodes' of negativity. They're becoming less frequent and I'm realizing they're usually far-fetched. Still have mild-moderate memory issues but I'm still working on it. I have one life to live, I'm not going to waste tome waiting to see what's going to get better on its own. It's still the same as before the accident, wanna be stronger? Work out. Wanna be smarter? Study. Good luck to everybody, this sh*t sucked!

My traumatic brain injuries are the result of 21 ECT. Why is a procedure that injures the brain CAUSING anxiety and depression used by so- called doctors to "treat" depression?I have severe cognitive dysfunction and short and long term memory problems and feel apathetic and hopeless as a result of the ECT. The depression and anxiety are unbearable. They destroyed the person I used to be.

I got injured 30 yr.s ago and it is still hard for me to tell any boss I have how to accommodate me to help my inability to track, w/ memory. Debbie

After reading these comments I thank u for sharing u r talking straight to me Knowing I am not alone is so supportive I am 63 post closed head injury from MVA 15 mos ago and other internal contusions but I am not the same I had to retire early as A RN and Professor and I am much better but the depression and anxiety and apathy r new to me to handle Zoloft and Atarax help a lot but I have definite nemort loss fear to go places I don't know or travel far I pack backed alone in Europe yearly I want that person back I am thankful to b alive and what helps me is fighting family friends and part time work schedule to keep a Low Energy State it's all I can take Go Forward and adapt U R ALIVE

Brain injury after car accident (4 years ago, now 30). Struggling to be positive- moves you on emotionally and physically, after 5 weeks of a positive period of time. The contrast is tantalizing- you know how you can be when you're in a useful state of mind, got to find something to get you back there!

I was hit in the face by a line drive baseball in a men's ball game at 12... hit by a car driving a bike and went thru a windshield at 15... and hit as a pedestrian at 16 and kept in the hospital for 2 weeks following a severe concussion.  Today I'm 50 and am somewhat functional as long as I'm on 150mg of Zoloft, but still stuck with what seems to be lifelong depression, social anxiety and self harming issues.  I see a psychiatrist and I get the feeling even he doesn't understand.  I feel very alone in this battle with myself.  Thank God I have a wife who understands.

I completely understand, just trying to fit in a normal life. IT this isn't your normal. Life has wasted as years gone by. For me I need my life back. How is the question .

16 years post.  Terrible depression and anxiety.  I just can't seem to get fixed - I am broken.

It has been 11 months since my TBI, I'm from Dublin Ireland, I fell 20 feet and went into a coma for 10 days, had 5 bleeds to the brain and cracked my skull in 3 places, I was doing so well, up until last month, my ex had passed away and that's when the brain zaps started, I kept thinking oh it's a seizure but the seizures never came, so I started having panic attacks, I'm still afraid it's a possibility of seizures, I guess I'm too afraid to admit that yes it is Anxiety! I wish I had my old me back 

My TBI occured on Dec 6th 2014.  I was told it was mild post accident.  A drunk driver t-boned me at 50 mph and totaled my Honda accord.  He was driving a Ford Expedition.  As the months passed, I thought I was feeling better and better.  I was just feeling less "foggy".  Over one year later, work is awful, and I am afraid I may be put off active duty.  I am in the Army, but my command does not seem to care that I had a TBI.  They just act as if I am a bad Soldier. I am still having cognitive issues that affect my memory, my reasoning, and my ability to get my job done.  I can't concentrate, I can't read anymore, I can't have any kind of relationship currently.  If it was mild, thank goodness it was not moderate or severe.