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 (73)

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.

Hello, I’m 21 years old. I was hit by a car whilst riding my bike 10 years ago. I suffered multiple head injuries and broken bones. I was very lucky to survive. I was kept in the hospital for around 3-4 weeks following. I didn’t go back to school until around 3 months later for half days (to test how my brain injury was mending). I also had my 2 front teeth knocked out and had an awful time following the accident having my teeth sorted out- I have only just now 1 month ago had them sorted properly and looking nice. I don’t remember a time following tbe incident that I have not felt anxious. Around a year and a half ago I started getting feelings of depression. I also don’t remember having any type of support from hospital staff etc for my mental health at the time- I suppose it was back in 2009/2010 mental health wasn’t look into so much back then, especially not for children. I’m just hoping someone will be able to tell me they have had similar effects so long after the initial trauma ? And I have awful anxiety over the thought of visiting my doctor and telling him this, therefore I have been barely coping. Many thanks.

In November 2008 I was a first semester sophomore in college and I was in a horrific car accident. I was t- boned on the passenger side by a mini van and I was driving a sedan. Luckily it was only me in the car, but the car crashed in on me and nearly broke every bone in the right side of my body including ribs, shoulder, ear, collar bone, skull. I have absolutely no memories of the accident or of much of the weeks/ months right before. I was in a coma for ten weeks and my road to “back to normal” was not easy. I am extremely fortunate to be here 11 1/2 years later and to say that since that horrible day, I graduated with my Bachelors degree and just graduated with my masters degree in social work. In terms of the anxiety, I can relate to pretty much everyone who commented on here. My anxiety is constant and it seems as though I constantly have a fear of death for me, for my parents, for my friends. Technically I know how to diagnose this, but when it’s your own fear or anxiety it’s hard to understand.

The hardest thing about getting hit in the head is being told over and over "there is no evidence" to support your how you feel.

I believe there is a connection. I had tbi when I was 8 and 10 years old. Now I’m almost 50 and I’m suffering with debilitating anxiety and depression. I was able to function in society in between up until 2 yrs. ago. My drs. have me experiencing different meds. which I feel more of the side effects than relief. Had head scans done only to be told my brain looks like an old man.

I had a brain tumor when I was 9 years old attached to the motor skills part of the brain had surgery that day ir I would have died it made my face swell out so much that for a 9 year old kid I was worried. Surgery was successful and tumor was removed I had to learn to read and write again. I had terrible anger issues after my surgery in 1991 was seen by a multitude of neurosurgeons and doctors shirkis etc. Through out my life always had anger issues, depression, insomnia etc. I'm now 38 years old been in the IT field for over 14 years and now I cant find work for over 3 months now over 9 interviews no success everything is overwhelming my anxiety has become so bad I cant even focus anymore cant sleep. Passed out parking in my spot at the apartment complex I was staying at luckily no one else was hurt. My girlfriend and I went to ER has MRI, catscan, ekg, and every other test they could do they told me that am healthy as an Ox but cant explain the issue I'm experiencing its effecting my daily life, my family and the ones I love the most. I dont know what to do anymore thanks for listening it was nice to know that I'm not alone out here I hope that we all can find some peace from this someday.

In 2000 I was struck in the back of the head with a metal bar and knocked out cold for approximately 30 minutes. It was a completely random attack which occurred in the middle of a town high street with my attacker coming up behind me to strike me unaware.

Luckily I only suffered a broken nose and a heavy concussion but I was in and out of consciousness for the following 5-6 hours in hospital. I was 21 at the time so recovered fairly quickly but I definitely felt different afterwards. Its always been difficult to explain but I suffered terrible red mists in the weeks and months following the incident. One minute I would be sitting on the bus to work looking out of the window minding my own business and then I would come to in flushes of anger, with fists clenched and heart pounding. It was like having an explosively violent day dream which shocked me back into the room.

The mists faded after around 2 years becoming less and less frequent but my anxiety was on the rise and by 2005 I was having regular panic attacks and paranoid experiences which I had never had before. These have caused me a great deal of trauma and some depression in the years since and I always had the gut feeling that the attack was behind it all.

Has anyone else experienced the kind of red mists I described as a result of their head trauma? They were frightening at the time and although I haven't had a serious one for around 15 years, they have stayed with me as very unpleasant experiences.

Hi John,
Sorry to read of your situation but thank you for writing about your experience on here as it has helped me to understand my situation a little.
In December 2019 I fell backwards whilst ice skating and landed on the back of my head splitting it open quite badly. I don't think I was knocked out. The splits in my scalp were pulled together with steristrips at hospital and I was sent home with advice about head injuries.
Like you I carried on as normal then 2 months later 'bam' I had a severe panic attack as you did.
I wondered if you were ever told by your physician if there was a direct connection between your head injury and the subsequent severe panic attack.
Kind regards, Paul

Hi, was it a colloid cyst? I had surgery to remove a colloid cyst from the third ventricle of the brain in 2014 and I suffer from anxiety now and just am a different person overall. I don't know if it is the surgery or just growing older that changed me, but it seemed to happen right after surgery. Things felt very different. Is this how yours is too?

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?

Hey Curt. Item for item, our stories are a pretty good match, or a pretty bad match. I'm still dealing with all of this stuff. I was t-boned on my bike by an SUV, texting, not much protection for me. I also was unconscious, I don't know for how long, I think maybe a minute or so, as the woman was screaming over me, "I killed him! I killed him!" I was 56, ahead of the curve for my age, in shape, dating a beautiful younger woman and my life changed that day... and that beautiful woman is my best friend now and is helping me through this to the best of her ability. Anyways, the fact is, she's typing for me these words, I'm relaxing in bed. I got hit. I got up. I told the lady she didn't kill me. I tried to make her feel okay. I went home like I was superman and the next day, I couldn't wipe my a**. Lots of pain and like you said, the depression sets in... I'm a performer so I lost some serious gigs, in fact I lost a whole rehearsing band situation. I wanted to reach out because your letter, your post, really describes to a T what I'm feeling. I was hit in early October 2018. If you ever need to reach out or you want to talk, I would really appreciate that. Hit me up on facebook under Jeaux Archambeault.

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 everyday..my 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 was in car accident 13 months ago. Suffered three herniated discs in my neck and a concussion. First couple of months felt like I had a severe flu, then the depression began. This has continued with varying intensity since. My memory and cognitive abilities have suffered. I continue to search for help from the never ending headaches, but can not seem to be able to find a neurologists that will help. I continue to push through for my son and wife. I pray everyday that this nightmare will end.

I had a car accident on 10/22/18. Driver broad sided my pick up. Felt ok at the accident just a bit shaken up. Symptoms began approximately one week later. I just felt not well. This continued for 2 months and steadily progressed. I got an mri which revealed three herniated discs in my neck. I was dealing with constant pain and headaches which developed in to severe depression. I was able to get thru the depression but still struggle with daily anxiety. Anxiety has improved but am always comparing myself to pre injury. I continue to research to find hope for new treatment to help improve my condition. Worse part of all this is the inability to feel any sort of relaxation.

I feel your pain, I hit my head and now I have terrible anxiety which I never had before. It’s hard for me to even go out to dinner because all the noise irritates me. It’s a slow recovery process but it will get better. Also if you can get good sleep I think that will help your recovery process.

Go to a hormone dr...I went on T3 for my thyroid & made a world of difference.I paid out of pocket because it’s an all natural dr.

Are you still out there? I was just scrolling this forum and I saw your comment and you sounded like you needed someone to see you. Are you doing ok?

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.

So...post 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 procedures....talk 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.

Hi,
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 went...my 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...

Marina

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